You hear a lot these days about eating heart healthy and taking care of your cardiovascular system, and for good reason. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S., and nearly half of all Americans have at least one of the three major risk factors that can lead to heart disease: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or a history of smoking.
The obvious question is, “What can I do for my heart health?” More importantly, what can you do to benefit your physical health without depriving yourself and your family of foods that you love… like avocados?
It may surprise you to learn that fresh avocados are a heart-healthy fruit. After all, haven’t you heard that avocados are high in calories and fat? You may have been taught that low-fat diets are important for heart health, and that’s not entirely inaccurate. But low-fat is not the same as no-fat.
When health experts talk about “good fats” and “bad fats” they aren’t judging your snack habits. Good fats, which are monounsaturated or polyunsaturated, help nourish your body and can help people meet the Dietary Guidelines for for Americans’ recommendations to shift from eating saturated fat to good fats. One-third of a medium avocado offers 5 grams of monounsaturated fat and 1 gram of polyunsaturated fat in every 50 gram serving.
The “bad fats” are saturated fat and trans fat, which can cause trouble for your heart if they dominate your diet. More than 75% of the fats in avocados are the “good” kind, plus they have absolutely zero cholesterol, but the benefits don’t stop there! Avocados are low in sugar and are a good source of fiber contributing 3 grams of fiber per 50 g serving.
Best of all, it’s now easier than ever to add avocados into your diet. Avocados are extremely versatile and go fantastically with a number of traditional meals, the latest trends in cuisine, or even plain by themselves. You can search to your heart’s content thousands of avocado and guacamole recipes on Avocados From Mexico’s recipe page. Visit the “how-to” page to learn terrific tips like how to pick a ripe avocado by holding in the palm of your hand and giving it a gentle squeeze to see if it’s ripe. Or how about the best way to slice and dice it for ultimate enjoyment? It’s easier than you think: Just cut it in half, twist, remove the seed, and cut into long slices or dice into cubes, and you’re all set.
DISCLAIMER: While many factors affect heart disease, eating avocados as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk.