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Friday, July 12, 2013
FUN FACTS ABOUT AVOCADOS
Avocados are one of my favorite foods. Although I don’t have an avocado tree at home, my house is always filled with avocados. I compiled 11 interesting things to know about my favorite food to inspire you to add more avocado to your day and to aid you in your journey to a healthier and natural life.
1. They're baby friendly.
Avocados are the size of a baby in its mother’s womb at 16 weeks. They're also a good snack to feed to babies young and old!
2. They're fiber rich.
There are 10 grams of fiber in one medium-sized avocado. There are two grams of fiber in one serving, which is one-fifth of a medium avocado. It contains both insoluble and soluble fiber. Insoluble fiber (which speeds up the passage of foods) accounts for 75%, with the remaining 25% as soluble fiber (the fiber that makes you feel full).
3. They have natural packaging.
Their thick skin protects them; it’s natural packaging! You can’t eat the skin, but it shields the green goodness inside, making avocados perfect for travel.
4. They lower bad cholesterol.
Avocados are one of the only fruits that contain heart-healthy monounsaturated fat (the good-for-you fat) that helps boost good (HDL) cholesterol and lowers bad (LDL) cholesterol.
5. They upgrade your dips and spreads.
An avocado serving size is 50 calories, which works out to be 3 thin slices or 2 tablespoons mashed. There are fewer calories than the same amount of butter, mayonnaise, sour cream, peanut butter, almond butter, olive oil, and coconut oil — PLUS avocado has over 20 vitamins and minerals to upgrade your natural diet! Use avocado as a substitute today!
6. They're gluten free, dairy free, vegan, vegetarian and cholesterol-free.
Avocados are naturally FULL of nutrition, so there's no need for special labels. They're full of flavor; think of all of the meals you can healthify with avocado!
7. You know when they're ripe and ready.
Avocados are ripe when they feel heavy for their size, yield to light pressure and are dark in color. But don’t squeeze these delicate babies too hard. Not ripe? Put in a brown paper bag for 2-4 days, or you can speed up this process by putting a banana or apple in the bag.
8. They're an anti-aging powerhouse.
Supercado is what we should call avocados, because they're one of the most inexpensive anti-aging tools for your skin! Don’t let its rough outer covering fool you — the inner smoothness and creaminess are what we need for youthful skin. With all of the nutrients, healthy fat and vitamins, an avocado tree could be the next fountain (tree) of youth!
9. They have a fun etymology.
The word “avocado” comes from the Spanish word aguacate, which is from the the Nahuatl word ahuacatl. When I lived in Chile, we called it palta, which is its Quechua name. It's also sometimes called the alligator pear due to the shape and rough green skin (cut it open and it looks like an alligator eye, too). I prefer to call it palta; my strong love for avocados started in Chile.
10. They're a climacteric fruit.
Yes, avocado is a fruit and is climacteric, meaning it matures on the tree but ripens off of the tree. The “paltas” we get in non-avocado bearing climates are picked hard and green and kept in coolers until they reach their final destination. Avocados must be mature to ripen properly. In a perfect world they would fall off the tree and ripen on the ground naturally.
11. Avocados need love, too.
Avocado trees do not self-pollinate; they need another avocado tree close by to bear fruit. The avocado is an Aztec symbol of love and fertility, and they also grow in pairs on trees. My love and I eat them every day, and we create natural loving meals with love filled food!
When will you be picking up some avocados? Do it today! There are over 500 varieties of avocados in the world, with the most popular in the United States being the Hass varieties. Pick a few up and share some green avocado love!
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