Avocados are high in beneficial plant chemicals aka phytochemicals with antioxidant powers and ‘good’ fats (monounsaturated) plus they’re packed with fibre, with a whopping 10g of fibre in one avocado! Your gut bacteria’s favourite nutrient.
And now a study has suggested they can lower oxidised LDL cholesterol (the ‘bad’ type) too.
Whether it’s #avotoast, good old guac or straight out of the shell… it turns out avos aren’t just good for the ‘gram’
45 adults who were classed as overweight or obese, with high LDL cholesterol levels, followed 3 different diets for 5-weeks each (in a random order):
1. Lower-fat diet.
2. Moderate-fat diet with one Hass avocado daily (approx 140g).
3. Moderate-fat diet with high oleic oils that matched the fatty acid profile of an avocado.
Oxidised LDL cholesterol levels (that’s the potentially harmful type caused by damage to cholesterol) were measured before and after going on each diet.
Only the diet with an avocado a day decreased oxidised LDL cholesterol. It also increased a phytochemical called lutein, linked with anti-inflammatory effects and protecting eye health (Wang et. al.)
The benefits of avocados aren’t just down to the healthy fats – they’re also likely due to the vitamins and array of phytochemicals.
So is eating one avocado a day a good idea?
I’d still never suggest focusing on any one ‘superfood’ – it’s all about the variety of plant goodness! But including avocados (amount really depends on your energy needs, but on average I’d say 1/2 an avocado (70g) per portion) regularly as part of a balanced, heart-healthy diet could be a good idea for #cholesterol levels – a key risk factor in heart disease.