How to live longer: This is how many avocados you should eat per week
Avocados have risen with popularity over the last few years, becoming a fashionable food that can boost health.
But are they really that healthy? According to dietician Juliette Kellow and Dr Sarah Brewer in their book ‘Eat Better Live Longer: Understand What Your Body Needs to Stay Healthy’, avocados have a range of health benefits from helping to lower cholesterol to protecting the eyes.
“Creamy and delicious, avocados are loaded with good fats that lower cholesterol and protect against wrinkles.”
“They are also packed with a variety of vitamins and minerals that help with everything from keeping eyes healthy to regulating blood pressure.”
Here’s how avocados can help maintain optimum health.
Avocados are rich in the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, which have been linked to a lower risk of cataracts and macular degeneration.
The monounsaturated fats in avocados also benefit the eyes by helping improve the absorption of eye-friendly carotenoids.
Avocados have been shown to reduce bad cholesterol in the body while boosting good cholesterol, thanks to their high monounsaturated fat content.
They also contain plant sterols which help to lower the level of cholesterol in the blood.
The lutein found in avocados can help protect against prostate cancer, according to Brewer and Kellow.
In lab-based tests, lutein reduced the growth of prostate cancer cells by 25 per cent.
One study of people over the age of 70 found a “good intake” of monounsaturated fats were linked to fewer wrinkles.
In addition, avocados contain vitamin E, an antioxidant that helps protect against cell damage to the skin.
On top of this, avocados contain good amounts of fibre, potassium, copper, vitamin B6 and vitamin K.
Potassium is essential to the maintenance of muscle contraction and nerve function, while copper benefits the nervous and immune systems.
Vitamin B6 is required for metabolism and a healthy brain, while vitamin K benefits bone health.
So how many should you eat per week? Kellow and Brewer recommend eating half an avocado three to four times a week.