Avocados are a food that seems to embody our constantly evolving understanding of what’s good for us. Once shunned for being too high in calories, they’re now being widely embraced and even referred to as a “superfood” in some health food circles. This is because, while they’re without a doubt a fatty food, the fat they contain is “good” fat – monounsaturated fat, which is high in oleic acid and plays an important role in promoting heart health(1).
In fact, studies have shown that avocados can help mitigate the inflammatory response your body can have to high-fat meals like cheeseburgers, making them a perfect addition to your meal(2).
With that in mind, it seems like there’s no reason not to indulge in an extra scoop of guacamole on your burrito. In fact, here’s a great recipe for classic guacamole that’s been made popular by the American chain restaurant Chipotle(3).
- 2 ripe Hass avocados
- 2 tsp lime juice
- 2 tbsp chopped cilantro
- 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
- 1/2 finely chopped jalapeno pepper, seeds included
- 1/4 tsp salt
Optional: You can add chopped tomatoes.
- Carefully cut the avocados in half and remove the pits. Scoop the flesh out of the avocado skins and place it in a medium sized bowl. Add the lime juice to coat the avocado.
- Add the salt and, using a potato masher or a fork, mash the avocado until it becomes smooth. Fold the remaining ingredients into the mashed avocado and mix well.
- You can taste the guacamole throughout this process and adjust the ingredient amounts to taste.
The Health Benefits Of Avocado
We’ve talked a bit about the health benefits of avocado, but it’s time to get a little bit more in-depth. One review explains that Hass avocados, the most common commercially available avocados in the world, contain many nutrients which “[help] to promote healthy blood lipid profiles and enhance the bioavailability of fat soluble vitamins and phytochemicals from the avocado or other fruits and vegetables,” adding that “There are eight preliminary studies showing that avocado consumption helps support cardiovascular health,” and that “Exploratory evidence suggest that avocados may support weight management and healthy aging.”(4)
As if that wasn’t incentive enough, further studies have shown that people who regularly consume avocados are just healthier than people who don’t; they tend to eat better overall, and have significantly lower body weight, BMI and waist circumference than non-avocado eaters do.
“Avocado consumption is associated with improved overall diet quality, nutrient intake, and reduced risk of metabolic syndrome,” one study concluded(5).
Whether the reason for the difference is that people who eat avocados regularly just tend to be more health-conscious than people who don’t, or that avocados are just that great for you, the evidence in favor of making avocados part of your regular diet is compelling.