When it comes to fats, we always think the worst, but it shouldn’t be this way. While there are a number of fats in the world that can work against your health goals, there are a few good ones. In fact, there are some fats you should be eating every day.
Avocados are a fruit full of essential vitamins and minerals and high in the healthy fats your body needs. By including it as part of your daily diet, you can benefit in a number of ways. And you have fat to thank for it.
Ingredients For Roasted Potatoes:
2 russet potatoes
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (or avocado oil)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
generous sprinkle of garlic powder, sea salt, and black pepper
pinch of chili powder (optional)
Ingredients For the Bowls (per bowl):
1/2 an avocado
2 cups chopped lettuce (or greens of choice)
1 cup chopped cucumber
1 peeled and roughly grated carrot
1 small peeled and roughly grated beet
1 tablespoon tahini
a squeeze of fresh lemon juice
sea salt and black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 425 F°. Cut the potatoes in half and cut them into a criss-cross pattern with a knife. Mix the oil with the cornstarch in a small dish and then rub all over the potatoes.
2. Sprinkle the cut side of each potato with a generous amount of garlic powder, salt, and pepper, and, if desired, a pinch of chili powder. Spray a baking tray with a non-stick cooking spray or use a silicone baking mat, then place the potato halves face down on the tray.
3. Roast the potato halves for between 30 and 40 minutes until you can pierce all the way through them with a fork or knife. To assemble the bowls, start with the lettuce, then top each with half a roasted potato and desired amount of chopped cucumber, grated beet and carrot, avocado, and tahini.
4. Finish with some fresh lemon juice, salt, and pepper, and enjoy.
The Health Benefits of Avocado
1. Healthy Fats
Avocados are made almost entirely from fat. While this may seem like a bad thing, it is important to note that these fats are oleic acid, which is a very healthy fat. Oleic acid is especially important for supporting heart health, and because it is resistant to heat-induced oxidation (as avocado oil), it’s a healthful alternative for cooking.
2. More Potassium Than Bananas
Potassium is an essential nutrient, and we always turn to bananas when we need our fill. It turns out that avocados contain more potassium than bananas, so they should be the new go-to food for this. Potassium helps maintain healthy electrical gradients in your cells for healthy circulation and blood pressure.
3. Nutrients Galore
Not only are avocados rich in nutrients like iron, zinc, potassium, and several essential vitamins, but they can help your body absorb additional plant nutrients. Some nutrients are fat-soluble (vitamins A, D, E, and K), which means they must be combined with fat in order for your body to utilize them. Eating avocados helps to increase the absorption of other plant antioxidants and nutrients, which can give you much more than you bargained for.
4. Full of Fiber
Avocados are full of fat and fiber, which can help support healthy blood sugar levels and weight management. Fiber helps to slow the digestive process, which leaves you feeling full longer, helping you avoid the temptations of processed snacks.
5. Cholesterol Support
In keeping with the heart-healthy theme, avocados also help support healthy cholesterol and triglyceride levels. The oleic acid and other nutrients in this fruit actively work to maintain cholesterol and triglycerides within healthy ranges.
6. Weight Management Support
The fiber in avocados helps keep you full, so you don’t feel the need to snack. This can help support a healthy weight management program. In addition to this, it is a fruit that is low in carbohydrates, which can support your weight goals as part of a balanced weight-maintenance diet.
7. Joint Health
The healthy fats and antioxidant nutrients in avocado help reduce occasional oxidative damage, supporting joint health and maintaining healthy mobility and flexibility.
8. Vision Support
The ability to help your body absorb antioxidants such as lutein and zeaxanthin is the process that helps support your eye health. These two antioxidants help reduce typical cellular oxidative damage to promote healthy eye function and reduce the risk of developing age-related eye symptoms.
Not all fats are bad. The healthy fats that make up most of the avocado fruit combined with its other essential nutrients make this fruit a must for every season. Easily added to any meal of the day and perfect for snacks and side dishes, the avocado is the next big step in going green.
Popeye may have had spinach but if he had thrown in avocados too, he would have been strong as well as healthy, and so can you.