More than a third of Americans suffer from metabolic syndrome. The deadly condition increases your risk of heart disease fourfold. And it makes you 30 times more likely to develop diabetes.1
Metabolic syndrome is characterized by five risk factors: high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high levels of triglycerides, low levels of HDL (“good”) cholesterol, and belly fat. If you have three or more of these symptoms, you likely have metabolic syndrome.
Now, a large review of medical studies reveals there is “satisfactory clinical evidence” that adding avocados to your daily diet can prevent—and even reverse—metabolic syndrome.2
For years, mainstream doctors warned that you should avoid avocados. They were thought to be fattening. The new research shows those doctors were absolutely wrong.
The Super Fruit for Optimal Heart Health
Researchers did a 20-year review of studies on the health effects of avocados. They found that avocados boost almost every area of your health. And they are an especially powerful weapon against metabolic syndrome.
Avocados are rich in bioactive components. They include carotenoids, fatty acids, minerals such as calcium, iron, and zinc, and vitamins A, B, C, and E.
Researchers found eating avocados:3 4
- Lowers systolic blood pressure (the upper number) by up to 10% and diastolic readings (the lower number) by up to 5%.
- Reduces hardening of the arteries from bad cholesterol and plaque buildup.
- Increase levels of HDL—“good” cholesterol—and lowers LDL—“bad” cholesterol—by 5-10%. It also has a beneficial impact on triglycerides.
And as for the conventional “wisdom” that avocados are fattening… Obese adults who ate one avocado a day for six weeks—and changed nothing else in their diet—actually lost weight. And they reduced their body fat by as much as 10%.
The study was published in the journal Phytotherapy Research. The study authors concluded: “The lipid-lowering, antihypertensive, antidiabetic, anti-obesity, antithrombotic, antiatherosclerotic, and cardioprotective effects of avocado have been demonstrated in several studies.”
The researchers endorsed avocados as a natural treatment for metabolic syndrome. “Satisfactory clinical evidence suggested that avocado can be used . . . for treatment of different components of MetS (metabolic syndrome),” they wrote.
Avocados: Should You Buy Organic?
While you might worry about chemicals and pesticides in other fruits, avocados are just about risk-free. In fact, they are one of the rare fruits or vegetables where it doesn’t make sense to pay extra for organic. The thick outer skin keeps pesticides and nasty chemicals from contaminating the meat of the fruit. Bugs generally can’t pierce the skin…so farmers use few chemicals when growing avocados.
Another way to get the benefits of avocados is to use avocado oil for cooking. It has a mild flavor and very high smoking point, about 500 degrees.5 This means its healthful fatty acids and nutrients remain intact at higher temperatures. And it makes a great base for homemade salad dressings.
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