Nutritional advisory: Here’s what’s in a 145 gram serving of avocado

Like the egg versus chicken debate, avocados have always vexed people with their existence. Is it a fruit or a vegetable? According to Readers Digest, it’s both. Well, technically it’s a big berry with a single seed. Regardless of its origins, avocados are a great addition to healthy diet.

Rich in healthy monounsaturated fats, avocado may help support heart health and reduce cholesterol levels. They’re also a good source of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and promotes a feeling of fullness, according to Dr. Rajkumar, Senior Consultant, Internal Medicine, Indian Spinal Injuries Centre, New Delhi.

Enlaces Patrocinados:

Calories: 234
Total fat: 21 grams
Saturated fat: 3.1 grams
Monounsaturated fat: 14.7 grams
Polyunsaturated fat: 2.7 grams
Cholesterol: 0 grams
Sodium: 10 milligrams
Total Carbs: 12 grams
Dietary fiber: 10 grams
Sugars: 1 gram
Protein: 2.9 grams
Vitamin K: 26% of the Daily Value (DV)
Folate: 20% of the DV
Vitamin C: 17% of the DV
Potassium: 14% of DV
Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid): 14% of the DV
Vitamin B6: 13% of the DV
Vitamin E: 10% of the DV

Avocados are a great source of dietary fiber, both soluble and insoluble. (Source: Unsplash)

Health benefits of avocado

Avocados offer a myriad of health benefits due to their rich nutrient profile, according to Dr. Rajkumar.

Source of heart-healthy fats: First, they’re a great source of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, especially oleic acid. This type of fat has been associated with reducing LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and promoting HDL (good) cholesterol, which is beneficial cardiovascular health.

Provides dietary fiber: Additionally, avocados are an excellent source of dietary fiber, both soluble and insoluble. Fiber aids in digestion, promotes feelings of fullness and helps regulate blood sugar levels.

Helps manage chronic conditions like diabetes: It also helps maintain a healthy weight and reduce the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Rich in essential minerals: They’re especially high in potassium, which supports healthy blood pressure levels and helps prevent high blood pressure. Additionally, avocados contain vitamins K, E, C, and various B vitamins that play vital roles in immune function, bone health, skin health, and cognitive function.

Loaded With Antioxidants: This fruit also boasts powerful antioxidants, including carotenoids (such as lutein and zeaxanthin) and tocopherols, which help fight oxidative stress, inflammation and reduce the risk of chronic diseaseslike cancer.

Can Diabetics Consume Avocados?

Despite being relatively high in calories, avocados have a low glycemic index, meaning they have little impact on blood sugar levels, according to Dr. Rajkumar.

The high fiber content in avocados slows the absorption of carbohydrates, helping regulate blood sugar levels and improve glycemic control. Additionally, the monounsaturated fats in avocados may promote insulin sensitivity, which is beneficial for people with type 2 diabetes.

However, portion control is still important due to their calorie content.

Are avocados useful for pregnant women?

Avocados can be extremely beneficial for pregnant women due to their nutrient-rich composition, says Dr. Rajkumar.

They are an excellent source of healthy fats, including monounsaturated fats, which are crucial for fetal development and the mother’s overall health. Avocado they also provide essential vitamins like folate, which helps prevent neural tube defects in your developing baby.

The fruit is high in fiber, which aids in digestion and prevents constipation, a common problem during pregnancy.

Avocados also contain important minerals like potassium and magnesium, which support proper muscle function and blood pressure regulation. Their versatility makes them a convenient and nutritious addition to a pregnant woman’s diet, providing valuable nutrients for both the mother and the developing baby, explains Dr. Rajkumar.

Excessive consumption of avocados can disrupt the food balance. (Source: Getty Images)

Things to keep in mind while eating avocados

While avocados are generally safe and nutritious, there are some important considerations, says Dr. Rajkumar.

  1. Individuals with latex allergies may experience cross-reactivity with avocados, resulting in oral itching or swelling. It is essential to be aware of this potential allergenicity and to consult a doctor if necessary.
  2. Although avocados are low in content sugar, are relatively high in calories due to their fat content. Excessive consumption can lead to weight gain, if not taken into account a balanced diet.
  3. As with any food, overconsumption can disrupt dietary balance and potentially contribute to an increased risk of nutritional imbalances or gastrointestinal distress. Therefore, avocados are recommended to be enjoyed as part of a controlled and varied diet.

Myths and facts about avocados

According to Dr. Rajkumar, avocados are often thought of as fattening, but most of their calories come from healthy monounsaturated fats that are beneficial for heart health. They can be included in a balanced diet without causing weight gain, he says.

Second, some people believe avocados are high in carbs, but they’re actually low in carbs compared to other fruits, she adds.

Also, while avocados are packed with nutrients, they shouldn’t be considered a sole source of nutrition, explains Dr. Rajkumar. They are best consumed as part of a varied diet to ensure a wide range of nutrients.

Finally, contrary to a common misconception, the pit of an avocado is inedible and should not be eaten due to potential choking hazards. You can cut avocado lengthwise, rotating the knife around the stone, to eat it. Separate the halves and remove the pit using a spoon or by gently tapping it with a knife and twisting to release. Scoop out the flesh with a spoon or slice it while it’s still in the skin and carefully peel it off.

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