not-so-secret-ingredient spotlight: avocado

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Finally getting around to a brand new not-so-secret ingredient: avocados! 

When I was new to this whole smoothie business, avocados became one of my favourite discoveries (next to the seeds, of course). Rich, filling and beautiful, bright green, avocados are high in the good kind of fat, vitamins and minerals. During the 1990s and its crazy war on fats, avocados fell out of favour. But their smooth and creamy texture, which makes them especially perfect for smoothies, means that (for me at least) they're here to stay! And even if you are watching your figure, your diet needs to be rich in healthy fats (avocados, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, raw nuts) to help absorb the other nutrients you take in.

- High in monounsaturated fats: lower LDL, bad, cholesterol and increase HDL, good, cholesterol.*
- Healthy fat good for balancing blood sugar (making avocados a good match for desserts).
- Loaded with fibre (approximately 13 grams each).
- Boast more potassium per gram than bananas.
- Contain vitamins E and B, and fibre.
- Contain boron, which may help the body better absorb calcium.
- They're alkalizing, which means they're great for your skin!

* Since they're high in fat, I recommend using just 1/4 to 1/2 of the avocado in your smoothie. Use the rest in a salad or homemade guacamole!

What to look for in the supermarket:
- Heavy in size
- Blemish-free skin
- Yields to gentle pressure (not too firm)

How to ripen:
- You can ripen avocados quicker by storing them in a brown paper bag with a ripe banana (the banana produces ethylene, which hastens ripening). Once ripe, you can store in the fridge for a few days to keep it from getting too soft.

Tip:
- Add lemon or lime juice to cut avocado pieces to keep them from turning brown.

Try:
a glass of raspberry & avocado
a glass of green (take two)

Enjoy!

a.


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