Image Credit: Courtesy of Irene Kredenets for Unsplash
Avocados are the perfect combination of tastiness and health.
According to Eat Fresh, avocados are “good for your skin, digestion, heart and joint health.” Vitamin E in avocados help protect from cell damage and keep the immune system healthy. Vitamin K helps in the body’s healing process. Both fiber and potassium improve heart health.
Erika Waterhouse said, “I eat them for both taste and nutrition!”
Although Waterhouse doesn’t partake in a particular diet, the senior marketing major is dedicated to her health and fitness. Waterhouse is diligent about what she eats, and makes sure to eat as many whole foods as possible.
Avocados contain “good fats,” said Paula Karamihas, assistant director of sports nutrition at the University of Maryland. The monounsaturated fats in avocados help to lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, especially if used instead of saturated and trans fats.
“Keeping your LDL level low reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke… Monounsaturated fats also help decrease inflammation which can be beneficial for recovery for athletes,” said Karamihas.
The University of Maryland Dining Services put up Stall Seat Journals that inform the student body about foods served in dining halls and their nutritional value.
Image Credit: Courtesy of UMD Dining Services
According to Sister Maureen Shrimpe - nutritionist at UMD Dining Services - the Stall Seat Journals are very effective, as they are easily visible in bathroom stalls.
According to the journal, “A full avocado contains more potassium than a banana, and half an avocado packs 4.6 grams of fiber, the most of any fruit.”
The dining halls serve a variety of avocado sandwiches, including the Avocado Chipotle Ranch Chicken Sandwich, the Avocado Chipotle Ranch Cheddar Toast and the Avocado Pico de Gallo Egg Provolone Breakfast Sandwich.
Waterhouse adds avocados to toast, sushi and rice bowls, serving as “the perfect addition to a lot of my favorite foods.”
Waterhouse shops at Target and Giant for her avocados, emphasizing the importance of a ripe avocado. A ripe avocado is darker in color and soft to touch, according to Waterhouse.
“I usually need them the next day.” Waterhouse eats avocados every other day, so she runs out of them quickly.
Avocado toast began her fascination with the fruit about a year ago.
Like Waterhouse, Americans are in love with avocados.
According to Avocados from Mexico, Hass avocados constitute 95% of all avocados consumed in the United States. The sales of Hass avocados continue to grow; the world’s largest producer of Hass avocados in Mexico exported over 1.7 billion pounds of avocados to the United States in 2017.
Avocado toast - a social media trend - is a popular menu item across the country. It takes about 10 minutes to make avocado toast.
With one avocado, four slices of bread, salt, pepper and olive oil, you can yield 4 servings.
More Americans are adopting plant-based and low carb diets, such as the keto diet and the Paleo diet. These particular diets encourage Americans to consume more avocados.
Guacamole is another principal reason for the increased popularity of avocados. The Mexican fast food chain Chipotle advertises using fresh and real avocados in their guacamole.
The Chipotle website wrote, “Being real means … making food fresh every day.”
You can make Guacamole in 15 minutes; the ingredients include: grape tomatoes, avocados, sweet onion, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper.
Mix the ingredients together and serve with tortilla chips for a delicious snack.