Avocados are large berries that enclose a single seed. This fruit is also known as an alligator pear because of its shape and coarse appearance. Avocados are a nutrient dense food with high amounts of vitamins A,B, E, and K. Avocados a good source of potassium. One half of an avocado actually has 65 mg more potassium than a banana! It also contains a good amount of fiber. As for antioxidants, avocados are rich in glutathione. The National Cancer Institute exclaims that about 30 grams of glutathione are in avocados. Glutathione has been found to block a variety of different carcinogens.
Healthy Fats in a Fruit!
Avocados are one of the few fat containing fruits. The fat composition of avocado oil is 20% saturated, 65% monounsaturated, and 15% polyunsaturated fats. (1). Avocado oil is revealed to be nutritionally beneficial because it contains a high amount of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) such as oleic acid. Studies have shown that a diet high in MUFAs boost heart health by vasodilating the blood vessels (2). Additionally, research shows that avocado oil has the potential to lower the cholesterol levels. (3). Consumers are interested in avocado oil because the fat composition brings potential health benefits.
ASSISTS IN ABSORPTION
Avocados are nutritionally beneficial because they are a healthful, fatty fruit that has carotenoids. Carotenoids are fat soluble pigments that give color to plants. They are found in fruits and vegetables such as carrots and dark leafy greens. Typically fruits and vegetables that are high in carotenoids are also low in fat. Carotenoids are fat soluble, this means that they are better absorbed into the body with fat. Since avocado oil is a healthy fat, it has the potential to enhance the absorption of carotenoids. The combination of avocado oil with foods that are high in carotenoids such as spinach and kale can increase the carotenoids absorption in the body.
5 WAYS TO BRING AVOCADO OIL INTO YOUR DIET
- Mayonnaise: Make your own mayonnaise and replace the refined oil with avocado oiL
- Dressing: Sprinkle avocado oil over a spinach salad.
- Baked Items: Avocado oil can be a butter substitute in bakery products such as brownies.
- Popcorn Oil: Drizzle avocado oil over popcorn to give a butter, rich, flavor
- Toast: Spread avocado oil instead of butter or jams on toast.
SPRAY DRYING WITH AVOCADO OIL
Similar to all other edible oils, there is a potential for oxidation of avocado oil when exposed to light, moisture, temperature, and oxygen. Oxidation causes a loss in the nutritional quality with the addition of the development of rancid flavors. Thus, the oxidation can lead to a shorter shelf life and a decrease in acceptable sensory characteristics. Spray drying with microencapsulation can prepare a stable emulsion. This process removes the liquid from the system and gives better storage and transportation qualities. Overall, the microencapsulation with spray drying process gives a higher stability of the avocado oil(4).
1, Avocado Oil. (2005). In C. Sinclair, Dictionary of food: international food and cooking terms from A to Z (2nd ed.). London, UK: A&C Black.
2. Salazar, M. J.; El Hafidi, M.; Pastelin, G.; Ramírez-Ortega, M. C.; Sánchez-Mendoza, M. A. Effect of an Avocado Oil-Rich Diet over an Angiotensin II-Induced Blood Pressure Response. J Ethnopharmacol 2005, 98 (3), 335–338.
3. Kritchevsky, D., Tepper, S. A., Wright, S., Czarnecki, S. K., Wilson, T. A., & Nicolosi, R. J. (2003). Cholesterol vehicle in experimental atherosclerosis 24: avocado oil. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 22(1), 52–55.
4. Bae EK,Lee SJ.2008. Microencapsulation of avocado oil by spray drying using whey protein and maltodextrin. J Microencapsul25:549–60.