What Do Avocado's Do For You?
Avocados could just be one of the most overlooked and underrated superfoods on the planet.
Even though they are often considered a vegetable or superfood, avocado is actually categorized as a fruit. This little wrinkly and unappealing food, is loaded with health benefits that you simply can’t afford to miss out on. And the taste?
While you may not prefer a plain avocado, when you catch a glimpse of the delicious recipes we have in store for you, you’ll definitely want to start adding this amazing fruit to your diet on a weekly basis. Heck, even a little hot sauce, Himalayan sea salt, and pepper can bring out its true flavors.
Before we dive into the health benefits of avocados and just how they may help you shed unwanted body fat, let’s look at their history and give you some fun facts.
HISTORY OF AVOCADOS
The avocado originally came from South Central Mexico and is the only fruit to have an unusually high amount of friendly fat content.
And it’s virtually sugar free, so it has a much different nutrient profile than all the other fruits. There is evidence of avocado’s dating back as far as 10,000 years in Mexico.
Slowly its use began to spread moving to Europe and then later on, into the United States and North America. 4 A typical serving size of 1/3 of a medium avocado has 80 calories, 8 grams of healthy fats, and only 4 grams of carbohydrates, of which 3 of those grams are fiber, 1 gram of protein, and virtually zero sugars.
FUN & INTERESTING UNKNOWN FACTS
Let’s look at some fun and interesting facts about the avocado. Bet you didn’t know most of these!
• Avocados almost went extinct at one point, but fortunately, giant ground sloths started eating them and saved them from dying off.
• Chipotle uses about 97,000 pounds of avocados per day amongst its many restaurants.
• Avocados used to be called ‘alligator pears’.
• There are certain species that should not eat avocados as they are incredibly poisonous to their body. This includes birds, cats, dogs, and rabbits.
• Americans collectively consume around 69 million pounds of avocados on Super Bowl Sunday. Holy smokes, that is a lot of guacamole!
• Wondering where it got its name? This is kind of strange; the word avocado is actually the Aztec word for testicle named for its oval shape and reputation as an aphrodisiac.
• Avocado trees do not self-pollinate, meaning they need to have another avocado tree close by to bear fruit. Now that you’re up on your avocado trivia, let’s get into the long list of their amazing health benefits.
4 ANTI-AGING HEALTH BENEFITS OF EATING MORE AVOCADOS
Just about everyone can benefit from eating avocados. Young or old, male or female, fit or unfit, avocados should be at the top of your weekly grocery list.
Anti-Aging Benefit #1: Rich In Dietary Fiber First, avocados are loaded with dietary fiber, making them great for stabilizing blood glucose levels and warding off diabetes. Since fluctuating blood sugar level is the hallmark trait of diabetes, the better you can keep your levels under control, the less risk you’ll have of this condition. They are also a perfect way to help manage your symptoms if you’re currently suffering from diabetes already. In addition to blood sugar benefits, their high fiber content is also great for helping lower your risk for heart disease.
The fiber found in avocados will help to reduce levels of bad cholesterol in the body and raise the level of good cholesterol, keeping your ticker working optimally. One study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association1 noted that one avocado per day as part of a moderate-fat, cholesterol-lowering diet lowers bad cholesterol levels, particularly small, dense LDL.
Anti-Aging Benefit #2: Healthy Skin, Hair, and Nails Another added benefit of avocados is that they can actually help you look younger. In addition to helping you lose unwanted body fat, which we’ll get to in a second, avocados are loaded with vitamin E, which is a fat soluble vitamin that is critical for keeping your skin, hair, and nails looking their best. If you find that your skin and hair looks dull and lackluster you may be lacking this fat soluble vitamin and avocados can help you fill in the missing gap.
You can even use them topically by preparing a hair or face mask as well. The vitamin E will help to promote better circulation to the scalp, which will then help to increase hair follicle health.
Anti-Aging Benefit #3: Antioxidant Benefits Vitamin E serves as a powerful antioxidant in the body, combating free radical damage and helping you side-step today’s most deadly diseases. The more free radical damage your body encounters on a day to day basis from stress, poor dietary habits, and environmental factors, the faster your body begins to break down.
Oxidation, which is the end result of free radicals is like rust on a car. It slowly eats away at your cells internally until things start to malfunction. Research2 has suggested that vitamin E may help to reduce the risk of coronary artery disease, illustrating another one of its key health benefits.
Anti-Aging Benefit #4: Reduced Risk Of High Blood Pressure And Stroke Finally, avocados may also help keep your blood pressure in check. Most people today consume a diet that is loaded with table salt and other unhealthy versions of sodium and not high enough in potassium.
Avocados can help you reverse this trend. This fruit offers a generous dose of potassium and is very low in sodium, which is the key combination for lowering blood pressure.
Research published in the BMJ journal3 noted that those who have the highest intake of unhealthy sodium in their diet plan are at the greatest risk for stroke, so by replacing some of your high sodium diet foods, such as processed cheese for example, with a healthier lower sodium source of fat like avocado, you can reduce your risk.
Ok, now that you are up to speed on the biggest health benefits of the avocado, let’s now talk about the fat burning benefits they have to offer.
4 DIFFERENT WAYS AVOCADOS CAN HELP YOU BURN UNWANTED FAT
If you’re reading this report, you obviously know by now that you’ll never get a flat, attractive belly without having a solid nutrition plan in place, and the avocado should be one of your go-to fat burning foods.
They have several metabolic benefits that can help you burn unwanted fat, but make sure you monitor your portion control carefully. Due to the friendly fat content, which yields 9 calories per gram vs. 4 calories per gram for carbs and protein, eating a third to a half an avocado as part of your meal is plenty to get your fat burning engine revved up.
Here’s how they work their metabolic magic on your body’s stubborn fat…
Fat Burning Pathway #1: Insulin Control Earlier we spoke about how avocados help to control your blood glucose levels. They are low in sugar, high in fiber, and offer a good source of healthy fats, which is pretty much a home-run hit for preventing a spike in blood glucose levels. The more stabilized your blood glucose levels are, the less insulin the body needs to release accordingly.
The less insulin released, the lower the risk there is of storing unwanted body fat.
And get this: when insulin is high and blood sugar is high, your body is basically in ‘nutrient storage’ mode. Insulin takes up the excess glucose from the blood and shuttles it away to the body fat stores—causing your fat cells to expand.
Keeping insulin levels under control is one of the quickest ways to preven fat storage and keep the body in a fat burning environment. Win-win for fat burning!
Fat Burning Pathway #2: Improved Satiety Another great fat fighting benefit that avocados deliver is that they’re great for helping you control hunger and cravings.
Simply adding 5-10 grams of dietary fat (found in a quarter of an avocado) to your meals will help that meal ‘stick to your ribs’ so to speak. Most people find that meals that are completely devoid of fat and only contain carbohydrates and protein leave you wanting more in half an hour’s time. A little friendly fat added into the mix helps put the brakes on your hunger. People who follow the Standard American Diet (SAD) that’s recommended all over the world (a low-fat diet) get hungry from lack of friendly fat intake so they cave and eat more than they should.
On top of this, research suggests that a lower carb diet in general can help to promote calorie reduction and weight loss results. A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine4 had subjects follow a reduced carbohydrate diet for a period of 14 days. The subjects consumed more calories when following their usual uncontrolled diet for seven days.
Fat Burning Pathway #3: Long Lasting Energy Everybody wants more energy—right? I know I do!
Another way avocados can help you achieve your weight loss goals is by providing you with a stable source of energy. Because avocados are rich in dietary fats and fiber they break down slowly, causing a steady stream of sustained energy.
Furthermore, one whole avocado actually contains more potassium than a banana does. This mineral helps to play a part in regulating muscle contractions. So, if you’re on a lower carb diet and about to hit the gym, avocados may just be the perfect preworkout meal companion to your protein source.
Fat Burning Pathway #4: Protein Power Avocados are also a decent source of protein—especially when compared to other fruits. Even though you only get four grams per fruit, when you contrast this to other fruits that are virtually protein-free, it’s definitely favorable.
Protein is essential for keeping your metabolism up, preserving lean muscle mass, and keeping hunger low. I consider it mandatory to eat some sort of healthy fat while on a reduced calorie plan, and many people will find they feel less restricted eating a source of fat that contains a bit more volume such as avocados or nuts compared to oils.
This isn’t to say you should avoid healthy oils altogether, as many oils do offer great health benefits… just keep in mind that friendly fat sources that provide more bulk (like avocados and small servings of raw nuts) will help keep you feeling full longer.
PROS OF AVOCADOS
• Are an easy to prepare food
• High in fiber
• Low in sugar content
• Great for stabilizing blood glucose levels
• Can help lower cholesterol levels5 and improve heart health6
• Provide a stable source of energy
• Are highly versatile and can be used in a number of different recipes
• Are relatively cost effective
• Can be purchased year-round in most areas
CONS OF AVOCADOS
• Are higher in calories so portion control is key
• Don’t have a very long shelf life
• Many people don’t like the taste of them plain on their own
So there you have it – a complete crash course on this amazing fruit called the avocado. Don’t let the high fat content scare you off. You need friendly fats if you want to burn body fat, avoid diseases, and live longer.
|Posted on July 19, 2018 at 3:30 PM|
What is the perfect healthy poop? “An ideal stool looks like a torpedo – it should be large, soft, fluffy and easy to pass,” says Dr. Foxx-Orenstein, the president of the American College of Gastroenterology.
Please check out the chart at the bottom of this blog to see what your poop says about you :)
Let’s face it: bowel movements aren’t the most popular topic and chances are you aren’t chatting about your bathroom habits with friends and neighbors. And yet there are an increasing number of researchers who have chosen to study poop and its importance to overall health. Why?
Science is discovering that when it comes to not just your digestive system, but pretty much your whole body, the characteristics of your stool and your daily elimination habits can be MAJOR INDICATORS for disease risk – both now and down the road.
Knowing what to look for in your bowel movements can put YOU in the “driver’s seat” about what you may need to change – including adding vital probiotics to your diet – to turn your pooped-out, stressed-out, and burnt-out body into one that is energized and “in the flow”… in more ways than one!
The Scary Statistics: Young People Feeling the Strain
Here’s a reality: Americans aren’t healthy when it comes to their colons. How can we say this? Because of the sad new statistics concerning colorectal cancer amongst young people.
A February 2017 study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found that although rates for colon and rectal cancer have been dropping in recent years overall, this mostly reflects the situation for older people. When the study looked at adults ages 20 to 49, they found that those born in 1990 have double the colon cancer risk and quadruple the risk for rectal cancer compared with people born in or around 1950.
In 2017, an estimated 135,500 people will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer and about 50,200 individuals will die from the disease. Most of these cancer deaths will be people under the age of 50.
“Trends in young people are a sign for the future disease burden,” says Rebecca Siegel, MPH, Strategic Director of Surveillance Information Services in the Intramural Research Department at the American Cancer Society. “Our finding that colorectal cancer risk for millennials has escalated back to the level of those born in the late 1800s is very sobering.”
When It Comes to Health, It Really IS a “Gut Feeling”
Of course, young people aren’t the only ones who have to worry about keeping channels of elimination clean and clear. We all do.
This is because gut health (including how healthy your stool is) is directly related to immune system health. As you may already know, the immune system is the first line of defense against pathogens and about 70% of the immune system is located in the gut area. Gut-Associated Lymphoid Tissue or GALT (part of another system called MALT, Mucosal-Associated Lympoid Tissue) is where most of your immune system cells come from.
According to a 2008 Italian investigation that focused on the connection between the gastrointestinal system and allergies, upwards of 80% of the plasma cells that wind up in your bloodstream and lymphatic pathways are produced in the GALT. Plasma cells are immune system cells whose main job is to hunt out antigens (i.e. foreign pathogenic substances) and destroy them.
Constipation: An American Epidemic
So, how can you tell if your own elimination habits are working for you or against you?
For an increasing number of individuals, trouble with poop comes when none comes at all. That is, in the very direct and often painful form of constipation. If you would like to read more on Constipation please download my book "Constipation Causes & Remedies" .
A 2004 systematic review published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology found that about 63 million people in North America suffer from constipation. Over three million doctor visits occur each year by individuals whose main complaint is constipation, and many of these individuals (close to 89% according to the above review) have not received lasting relief over a year later.
Ideally, food should pass through the body in less than 24 hours. Today’s processed foods, including many restaurant foods, are lacking in probiotics, enzymes, and natural fibers. These are all substances which assist in allowing food to not only be assimilated nutritionally but also in allowing food to pass with ease.
What’s more, processed food is often high in sugars, simple carbs, and gluten. These factors combined with low water intake and a sedentary lifestyle means that it is not uncommon for the digestive system to take 70 hours or more for “transit” to occur. And this is just not acceptable if you are trying to achieve optimal health.
And for some individuals, food does not pass at all. Many experts believe that a person leading a lifestyle such as the one described above may have up to 20 pounds of accumulated waste in their colon. Accumulated waste could mean fermentation in the gut, which can create gaseous substances that become toxic to the body and the brain.
Constipation can also lead to Leaky Gut, which has been connected to autoimmune disease, autism, and cancer. A quick search on the National Institute of Health database yields over a thousand studies that make the connect between imbalances in the colon and various forms of autoimmune disease, such as multiple sclerosis (MS).
Take the Test: Stool Analyzer Can Help You Determine if You Have Healthy Poop
If you have constipation or other digestive discomfort, you can take expensive and sometimes invasive tests that can help you determine the state of your stool, and thus the state of your health. Professional testing is certainly recommended if you have severe symptoms such as constipation that lasts more than a week or blood in your stool. Also, if you have been exposed to harmful pathogens like E. coli or Salmonella while traveling or by some other means.
If you have mild or occasional constipation or moderate digestive discomfort, however, there are other ways that are fast, easy, and some are even free!
In the age of the internet, Doctor’s Data is one site that is filled with helpful information. To learn more about the Stool Analysis test by Doctor’s Data Click here.
In the meantime, do you want to know what makes a healthy bowel movement in general? According to nutritionist Brenda Watson, author of eight books on the subject and the person that actually taught me colon hydrotherapy, a good, healthy poop can be determined by four factors:
Healthy elimination is when your poop “barely makes a sound when it hits the water,” is long and easy to pass, is “fashionably golden brown,” is soft and slowly sinks to the bottom of the toilet. “If it sinks like a rock,” warns Watson, “it’s a sign that something is not quite right.”
The Power of Probiotics for Healthy Poop
Constipation, Diarrhea, Bloating, Cramping, Gas and Acid Reflux - - These annoying and sometimes downright painful conditions could be caused by a whole host of factors. But for most individuals, the underlying reasons for them all has to do with gut imbalance in one way or another. Actually, this is very good news, because it means that you can DO something about it!
Gut imbalance is when a person has more bad bacteria (think Candida albicans or pathogenic forms of E. coli) than good bacteria (Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium are two examples) in their gut overall.
A good quality Probiotic Supplement is probably the best thing you can do to help balance your “gut microbiome,” restore the correct balance of both bad and good bacteria in the digestive system and help to ensure that all the mechanisms which depend on a healthy gut (including immune system function), are back on-line.
Researchers at King’s College in London conducted a meta-analysis of 14 other clinical studies and found that probiotic use increased the number of weekly bowel movements (i.e. helped with constipation) and slowing the “gut transit time” by roughly 12 hours (i.e. balanced out diarrhea). They also found that probiotic use helped to soften stools, making them easier to pass.
Many foods have probiotics as well as powerful enzymes and other substances in them that help the digestive system break down and assimilate nutrients. Fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, fermented veggies, and raw pickles, as well as organic raw or lightly-steamed non-starchy vegetables are just a few examples. For many individuals, however, simply consuming foods that contain probiotics is not enough. Many need extra help, and that is where a high-quality probiotic supplement can be essential, and I believe that Advanced Naturals line of Probiotics are by far the best (click here to learn more)
5 Ways to Have Perfect, Healthy Poop!
Of course, the main thing you can do to improve how food moves out of you is to change what goes in. This includes dietary changes such as taking in more fiber, drinking more filtered water, cutting back on gluten and, most importantly, adding healthy, organic probiotic-rich foods or probiotic blends to your daily routine.
There are also other ways you can significantly improve your elimination pathways in addition to probiotics and diet. Here are 5 that can help:
#1. Squatting and/or using a bidet when you go. The body is designed to eliminate waste while in a “squat” position. Sitting on a modern toilet unfortunately does not allow for complete elimination because it puts the body in a squished, unnatural position. Having a small stool under your feet while sitting on the toilet allows you to put yourself in a more natural position so that total elimination can occur.
#2. Getting more exercise. If inactivity encourages constipation, then getting yourself moving will encourage your bowels to move as well. Makes sense, right? According to a study published in the journal Gut, aerobic activity such as jogging can significantly help constipation, cutting “whole gut transit time” by a third to one-half. We can help you with this too, just click here to grab a 3 FREE Visits to our Group Training Sessions.
#3. Staying away from laxatives and stool softeners. According to Harvard Medical School, nearly half of the individuals who use these products are not satisfied with the results. This is either because they do not work or because of the short term or long-term side effects. In addition, some experts suggest that taking these products on a regular basis will cause the gut’s natural muscle movement to weaken over time.
However, there are some products on the market that are mild with specific combinations of food substances that you can incorporate into your daily supplement regiment. Colon Max by Advanced Naturals is one of the best.
#4. Taking probiotics with and after antibiotics. If you have already added a high-quality source of probiotics to your daily routine, then gut imbalance may not be a problem if you ever need to take antibiotics. If you aren’t, then make sure you at least do so during your antibiotic treatment. A 2012 meta-analysis by the RAND corporation found that taking probiotics during a course of antibiotic treatment reduced the incidence of Antibiotic Associated Diarrhea (AAD) by 42%. My pick for the best probiotic is Advanced Naturals (click here).
#5. Taking other pro-active measures such as colon-cleansing colonics, castor oil packs, as well as avoiding opioids, artificial sweeteners, and taking steps to lower stress are also great measures to ensure optimal digestive health.
So that’s the “scoop on healthy poop.” Not so bad after all, right? The important thing to remember is that the condition of your stool is an indication of the condition of your health in general – so take a minute the next time you go and check it out!
But seriously, keeping track of the condition of your bowel movements (or lack thereof) and making corresponding changes to your diet and lifestyle can help you and your processes of elimination stay in the “flow” and, more importantly, significantly decrease your risk for disease. If you would like to learn more about Constipation and Natural Remedies, please feel free to download my book (click right here). You can pass it along to friends or family that may suffer from constipation.