Yoga & Wellness

Avocado is the name of the game!

The avocado is a unique type of fruit. Yes, it is not a veggie although we love to eat it as a spread, on sandwiches, and in salads. Avocado is high in healthy fats and has powerful beneficial effects on health. It is also important to know that eating avocado or avocado oil with veggies can dramatically increase the number of antioxidants you take in. So let’s see all of the wonders that avocado can do to our health:

Improves cardiovascular Health

Many experts now believe that high consumption of pro-inflammatory processed vegetable oil is a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease. They advise lowering polyunsaturated fat intake and increasing the amount of healthy monounsaturated fatty acids in your diet. Avocado is an excellent source of monounsaturated oleic acid. Research has shown this beneficial form of fat reduces dangerous LDL cholesterol in the blood at the same time as increasing the more beneficial HDL cholesterol. Eating avocado can also decrease high blood triglyceride levels, another common predictor of cardiovascular problems.Avocado oil is an excellent cooking oil, much healthier than polyunsaturated vegetable oil and even better than olive oil, particularly for high-temperature frying.

Excellent cancer prevention

Avocados are a good source of antioxidant carotenoids like alpha-carotene, beta-car- otene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lutein, and zea- xanthin. These antioxidants protect your body’s cells against cancerous changes due to free radical damage and are considered your front line of defense against numerous diseases. Alpha-carotene appears to be espe- cially important for cancer prevention.

Against wrinkles

The monounsaturated fats in avocado are amazing for improving your skin tone and appearance. They are vital for maintaining good moisture levels in the epidermal layer of your skin that make it look and feel soft and healthy. Avocado protects your skin from wrinkles and other visible signs of aging with its antioxidant carotenoids; vitamin E which helps guard against photo-aging from sun exposure; and vitamin C which is involved in the creation of elastin and collagen for main- taining your skin’s elasticity and firmness.

Good for diabetes

The oleic acid in avocado is especially recommended for its ability to lower ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol while raising the ‘good’ HDL cholesterol. Keeping cholesterol levels in check is vital for diabetics as they have a much higher risk of cardiovascular disease.

Partner for fertility and in pregnancy Avocado is a particularly important food for women who are pregnant, and those trying to be, due to its high concentrations of folic acid. This B vitamin is needed to prevent birth defects like spina bifida and doctors advise women to get high amounts of folate both before and during pregnancy. Avocados contain around 45 mcg of folate per half a cup, which is more than any other fruit, mak- ing them a great food source for moms to be.

Promotes Hair Growth

Though most of us would like our hair to grow faster, few of us actually know what causes slow hair growth. Nutritional defi- ciency is one of the most common reasons for slow hair growth. If you are not eating enough or not eating the right food, soon you will start to notice that your hair looks dull and lifeless and doesn’t grow as fast as it used to. Avocados are high in vitamins B and E, which work at the cellular level to protect and strengthen hair. Vitamin E helps repair damage on the scalp, which may slow or prevent hair growing. Vitamin B is essential for hair growth. Avocado locks moisture into hair cells, nourishes hair cells, and strength- ens hair roots, shaft, and strands. When com- bined with egg yolk – which also promotes hair growth because of its protein and lecithin that strengthens hair follicles and roots – avocado makes a growth-enhancing hair mask that will leave your hair silky and soft to touch!

• Avocado and Egg Yolk Hair Mask
1/2 ripe avocado
1 egg yolk

Crack the egg and separate the egg yolk. Whisk it until it turns into a frothy liquid. In a separate bowl, blend an overripe avocado. Combine the egg yolk and mix well. Apply the hair mask mixture to wet hair, starting from your scalp to your hair ends. Massage the mixture gently onto your scalp for 5 minutes. Rinse hair thoroughly with lukewarm or cold water. Warning! Do not rinse with hot water or you will cook the egg in your hair. Shampoo and condition as normal.■

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