The Mighty Avocado

By Luisa Heenan
November 26, 2013
Food & Drink, Health & Beauty

It has been dubbed the world’s most perfect food. Rich, creamy, delicious and green, the humble avocado is a renowned super food that is as nutritious as it is delicious.

Avocado on white

Avocados are a daily staple in our household, especially because—despite the fact that the ones we get in Japan usually come from Mexico—they are readily available and at almost every supermarket, vegetable store and even many convenience stores, all ripe and ready to eat.

Avocados are nutrient-dense powerhouses, full of minerals including fiber, potassium, folic acid, and vitamins B, C, E and K. Plus, they are packed with essential healthy fats.

These are just some of the many benefits of this yummy little super food:

  • Supports heart, brain and cardiovascular health
  • Assists with the absorption of nutrients from other foods, so is perfect to add to salad to optimize health benefits of other vegetables
  • Low in sugar, high in fiber and low in carbohydrates for stabilization of blood sugars—especially important for diabetics but also for anyone to avoid those blood sugar spikes throughout the day
  • Being high in fiber, it keeps you feeling fuller for longer and promotes bowel function, being a good choice for those trying to lose weight
  • A member of the “Clean 15,” a list of fruits and vegetables with the lowest pesticides detected, making it safe to buy non-organic varieties

The easiest ways to add avocado to your daily eating are to chop it up and add it to salads, spread it on toast as a substitute for butter (it goes great with poached eggs), and use it in tacos or homemade sushi. It is also so versatile that it can crush most sweet, savory or creamy cravings without the guilt. Check out the recipes below for some ideas!

avocados cropped

Easy Clean Guacamole

Gluten/dairy/nut/sugar free

Serves 1-2. Great as an afternoon snack or as a healthy appetizer dip when entertaining.

Ingredients:

1 ripe avocado

1 tablespoon lime or lemon juice

1 garlic clove, crushed

Salt and pepper to taste

Optional extras:

Cilantro, green onions, diced red onion, chopped tomatoes, chillies

Method:

Add all ingredients to a bowl and mash with a fork or add to a food processor for a creamier consistency.

Serve with fresh chopped vegetable sticks such as carrot, celery and bell pepper.

 

Green Vanilla Shake

Gluten/dairy/refined sugar free

Serves 1. Perfect for kicking that ice cream or thick shake craving.

Ingredients:

1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or other milk alternative)

½ avocado

½ tablespoon vanilla extract

dash of cinnamon

1 cup ice

honey, maple syrup or stevia to taste (if necessary)

Method:

Pop all ingredients into blender and whiz up to a smooth consistency. Pour into a glass and serve immediately.

 

You can also check out my blog for a delicious and guilt-free chocolate mousse made with avocado. Trust me, it tastes great (and even better when you know it’s good for you)!