The Avocado Food Trend: 9 reasons you SHOULD snack on this superfood
Just like men’s fashion, men’s haircuts and men’s style, food can also be the subject of an emerging trend or movement. Growing up, my Mother indulged us in every possible food trend, popular enough to pass by Martha Stewart or Mary Berry from Prawn Cocktail to Meatloaf, Trifle to Eton Mess, which in time, discouraged me from ever jumping on the culinary bandwagon…
In recent times, food trends have become less about creativity and experimental pairings (so long cheese & pineapple sticks) and more about health, fitness and muscle building. Online food & fitness bloggers and Youtube gurus like Joe Wickes (The Body Coach), Steve Shaw (Muscle & Brawn) and Steve Kambs (Nerd Fitness) are all renowned for their popular ‘get-fit’ websites, which pitch a different take on a recommended diet and exercise regime.
Whoever you follow on Facebook and Twitter, we’re sure of one thing – you have been subjected to photo after photo, of the biggest food trend of 2017 – THE AVOCADO. The avocado has been literally everywhere for the last year. If you’ve managed to dodge the social media images of ‘scrambled egg & avocado’, then you will have witnessed the t-shirts and home-wear on the high-street laced with Avocado imagery and puns (Let’s avo-cuddle! Let’s not.)
If you’re like me and the rest of the gang at ‘Man Wants’, you’ll be questioning: When did the avocado start to dominate our Instagram feed? Has Asda always sold Avocados? What do you even do with an Avocado? Was there a time before the Avocado? Is this a new religion? And you’re right to question this overbearing food trend.
However, I as resident foodie decided to take it up on myself to invest a little research into the Avocado and chatted with our fitness guy, Tom (an advocate of the Avocado) to find out what it’s all about – unleashing the potential health benefits of this little green intruder. I’m reluctant, but let’s get to it…
What is an Avocado?
So if you don’t already know, an Avocado is classed as a fruit (despite it’s less than fruity taste). The fact that the Avocado has one large seed and a fleshy pulp actually means that the avocado is classed specifically as a berry! So let’s think of it as the fitter, modern relative of the gooseberry.
Avocados are high in protein
Surprisingly, the Avocado didn’t make our list of ‘30 Post-Workout High Protein Food to Help You Get Fit’ but as far as protein foods go, it certainly shouldn’t be forgotten. The avocado is recognised as a ‘complete protein’, this means that it provides all essential amino acids required for the body.
Tom tells us if you’re hoping to build muscle or get abs, then Avocados make the perfect post-gym food. They are rich in fibre, ensuring that the high-protein count is easily absorbed by the body and at 2gs of protein per 100 grams, you’re onto a winner if you’re aiming for abs!
Avocados pack a lot of Potassium
Potassium is an essential mineral, which naturally occurs in some fruit and vegetables. Potassium is essential for our nervous system, bones and muscles. It also enables the body to regulate blood pressure and supports healthy organs.
The humble Banana has always been known to have a high-potassium count but Avocado whoops it with 708.1mg of potassium per serving, around double the potassium of a Banana.
Get your good Fats from Avocados
We’re forever reminded of the dangers of eating fatty foods but despite what the media tells us, not all fats are the same. There is such thing as good fats in food. Good fats in food? We’ve been living a lie! ‘Bad Fats’ are usually Trans Fats and Saturated Fats, where the ‘Good Fats’ are known as Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated.
Avocados typically contain Monounsaturated fats in the form of an oil, commonly found in ‘plant food’. This type of fat also helps lower cholesterol!
The best thing about the avocado is that it can replace popular fats, like butter, in baking. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for an interesting Low-Calorie Chocolate Mousse made with an avocado instead of cream & butter.
Detox with Avocado Antioxidants
You’ve probably heard the word ‘antioxidant’ thrown around but I found that they’re actually, quite important. Tom told me that antioxidants are naturally occurring in fruit and vegetables and other plant based foods.
There are tons of different antioxidants, referred to by long and elaborate names but they all aim to prevent and stop cell damage caused by free radicals you find in environment (oxidants). Avocados are packed with antioxidants to reduce cell damage and the green flesh of the Avocado has the highest count, so pop it in a smoothie for a quick, clean detox.
Fill up on Fibre with an Avocado
It is fundamental to make sure that you are getting enough fibre in your diet to ensure that you body is working at optimum efficiency. Fibre slows down the rate that sugar is absorbed into the blood, ensuring that you aren’t burning out your energy too fast.
Fibre is also essential for healthy digestion. The Avocado is a great source of protein with 2 grams of fibre for ever 10 grams – making it a great snack to harbour energy throughout the day.
Now recognised as one of the World’s healthiest foods, Avocados are rich in a wealth of vitamins to make you feel and look healthy. With every bite of an Avocado your treating your body to Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, Vitamin E and Vitamin C.
All these vitamins have different health benefits which supports the bodies healing process and immune system and enables the body to store energy from carbs and protein. (I’m starting to buy into this Avocado lark…)
Like many other plant based foods and natural herbs, the Avocado has been traditionally used for lots of medicinal uses. The leaves, fruit and oils can all be used as remedies for specific health conditions.
Avocado has typically been used as a remedy to lower cholesterol, support digestion, balance blood sugar and prevent heart-related diseases like Angina. The Avocado has also been linked to the prevention of Alzheimer.
Hair & Skin
The oil of an Avocado has commonly been used in many holistic therapies like massage and Reiki but the fruit and stone of the Avocado can also be used to support healthy hair growth and promote clear and radiant skin.
The nutritional value of the avocado with its wealth in vitamins, mineral, potassium and magnesium promotes healthy cell renewal, preventing damage from sun and pollution, which effectively leads to wrinkles. The stone of the Avocado is also used in popular skin cleansers and scrubs (in place of microbeads) to exfoliate dead skin cells.
Those fats we were discussing earlier are not just great for our insides but are also brilliant when used on the hair (Alison swears by it). The monosaturated fats and oils, nourish dry hair and strengthen the strands to prevent breakage and dryness.
So, we’ve weighed up the potential health benefits of the avocado and I’m starting to see why the avocado is so popular with fitness gurus and health conscious people.
I’m not sure that I’m going to be posting photos of my Avocado breakfast on Instagram any time in the near future but I think I might start working an avocado into my diet. As a superfood and a complete protein, the Avocado is an all-round fix which supports healthy development of bones, muscles and organs and keeps us looking and feeling fit from the inside out.
Tom is now smug that he’s convinced me to get involved in this Avocado food trend but one thing is for sure, I think this is a food trend that’s here to stay. What do you think?
For more information on foods which promote a healthy diet, please visit our fitness and food pages and remember to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for daily updates from our Food and Fitness experts.