This fruit is native to South and Central America, the English living in Jamaica named the avocado an alligator pear. However today in Jamaica they call the avocado a butter pear. The original name for the avocado tree and the fruit comes from the Aztec word abuactal, meaning “testicle,” it is not only referring to the shape of the fruit but in how it hangs from the tree in pairs. The amount of names and meanings to this fruit vary greatly from culture to culture and country to country.
Avocados are an amazing source of many vitamins and minerals such:
- Panththenic acid
- Iron (when not from meat in order to get the benefit you need to eat vitamin C along with it fortunately avocado’ s contain vitamin C so no worries)
Avocado’s also contain the antioxidants Cartenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, as well as healthy fatty acids, including alpha-linolenic acid and oleic acid.
- Research Supports the health benefits of avocado’s
So what are the direct health benefits to eating avocados besides the enormous body of research demonstrating the health benefits of the antioxidant, fatty acids, and fats that are in avocados?
A study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, avocado extract was shown to inhibit the development of prostate cancer cells. They believe that the combination of cartenoids and vitamin E, and perhaps other nutrients, is believed to be the reason to the anticancer benefits. The healthy fatty acids are extremely successful in ensuring the fat soluble compounds are readily absorbed . Other studies have shown the synergistic effect that takes place in the avocado through the high levels of folate, potassium, magnesium, vitamin E, beta-sitosterol lowers blood cholesterol levels and inhibits excessive cell divisions in
Avocados are high in monounsaturated fat. Do not fear fat!!!! Fat is extremely important and is essential for living a healthy life. You need to attain approximately 30% of your diet from fats with equal amounts from monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and saturated fats.
- Its monounsaturated fat speeds up the basal metabolic rate
- Its high fat content gives a quicker feeling of satiation (“fullness”), thus helping to reduce overeating.
- Its high fat content slows down the rate in which your entire meal is digested thus reducing the spike in your blood sugar, therefore reducing the storage of fat and risk of diabetes and high cholesterol.