Including avocado in your diet can be very beneficial in many ways. Avocados are renowned for their effectiveness in cholesterol reduction and prevention of coronary heart disease. Eating avocados is also great for your brain, skin and bones. They are loaded with proteins and antioxidants that provide nourishment for your brain, nerve and skin cells, and maintain your bone mass. However, avocados do have lots of calories and fat which may scare you if you are on a weight loss diet. Contrary to what you may think, moderate intake of avocados can actually assist in your weight management. So don’t let the calories and fat hold you back from enjoying this vegetable.
Good Fat Prevents Bad Fat Absorption
Unlike the artery clogging fat and cholesterol from animal products like meat and dairy, avocado fat is mostly unsaturated and is good for you. A major proportion of avocado fat is a monounsaturated fat called palmitoleic acid (PA). This essential fatty acid is not only good for cholesterol reduction, it can also inhibit fat absorption in your intestines. In essence, PA helps to eliminate part of the fat content in your food so that your actual exposure to dietary fat is reduced.
High Fiber for Appetite Control and Food Movement
Avocado is one of best sources for dietary fiber. One cup of avocado has 10 grams of fiber which meets 40% of your daily fiber requirement. Foods that are rich in dietary fiber are more filling, and your body needs to work harder to digest these foods. Inclusion of avocado in your meals can automatically reduce your portion size and keep you from feeling hungry for longer periods of time.
Furthermore, 7.5 out of the 10 grams of fiber in avocado are insoluble fiber. This type of fiber continuously draws water into your bowels, easing its transport through your digestive tract. Faster food transit keeps your bowel movements regular and is extremely conducive to weight loss.
B-Vitamins to Boost Metabolism
You can get a tremendous boost in B vitamins from eating an avocado. All B vitamins are integral to cell metabolism. Increasing your intake of these vitamins promotes faster conversion of carbohydrates, fats and proteins into energy so that you burn calories more efficiently.
Stress Reduction to Prevent Overeating
Studies have found that high stress can lead to overeating and weight gain. Controlling your stress level is a key element of a successful diet. Avocado is a natural remedy for stress. It supplies you with valuable omega-6 fatty acid, folate and pantothenic acid, which balances your hormones and dulls your body’s response to stress factors, eliminating your risk of stress eating.
Diet-Friendly Ways to Have Avocados
With all its added advantages, you still need to control your avocado intake to avoid overloading on calories. The best way to have avocados and not gain weight is by substituting the meats and dairy in your regular diet with this vegetable.
- Avocado spreads: mashed avocado has a nutty and buttery taste which make it a deliciously healthy alternative to butter and margarine.
- Avocado salads: trade bacon pieces for avocado chunks in your salad. This way, you can cut both calories and saturated fat from your salad.