by Cheryl Mayor
People can be really lukewarm about avocados. If you don’t know when they are at peak ripeness, they can be kind of weird both in taste and texture; that is, no taste and waxy in texture.Until recently, people didn’t choose avocados partly because they thought they had no flavor, but mostly because they thought they were high in fat and cholesterol.
We all needed more information to make a healthy choice about this fruit.
If you eat a ripe avocado… that is, not too green and not overripe, it is a delicacy! The flavor is amazing and the texture is so creamy!
If that isn’t enough to make you love to eat them, do you know how healthy avocados are for you? They have great benefits, especially for vegetarians.
One of the greatest challenges if you eat a vegetarian or mostly vegetarian diet, is to get enough good quality protein. Avocados provide a complete protein! While the avocado ripens on the tree, the sun breaks down the proteins in the avocado into easily digested amino acids. Your body needs all 18 essential amino acids to create complete proteins, and you can get this complete protein from eating avocados!
Avocados also are a wonderful source of healthy fat, and we now know healthy fats are essential for good health, and especially for good brain health. Studies have shown that eating avocados have beneficial effects on cardio-metabolic risk factors and have produced lower levels of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) or the “bad” cholesterol.
All this makes eating avocados a win-win! But how do you eat them? They are easy to add to your meals, so use your imagination. Slice them on a salad; mash them and use them as a spread in a sandwich; top your scrambled eggs with them; you can even make an amazing chocolate mousse pudding with avocados, and then there’s always guacamole.
If you’re on a budget and trying to eat as much organic produce as you can, it’s good to know that so far, avocados are on the Environmental Working Group’s “clean 15” foods list. That is, they are among the foods that are the least sprayed with pesticides. For the present, you can grab conventionally grown avocados at lower prices than the organic ones.
One final bit of advice: eating an avocado at the right time can really make you love them. Buy several at a time, keep a couple in the fridge and put them out a day or two before you need to have them at the proper ripeness. That way you will always have a beautiful, creamy avocado ready when you need it!
Cheryl Major is a Certified Nutrition & Wellness Consultant. She blogs about health, clean eating to lose weight and feel better and deal with depression, and about how to use food as your medicine. Get a FREE copy of her Sugar Detox 411 at http://www.ThinStrongHealthy.com
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