The Hidden Benefits of The Avocado

Written on 5/07/2008 by Garrett Whelan who writes about cooking for men or anyone trying to kick the fast food habit at

Everyone says avocados are great. That’s all well and good but with California wildfires destoying large portions of the crops, costs have soared to $2 each. For $2, are these little fruits really worth it?

Actually, yes.

Delicious, healthy and versatile, avocados are one of those foods that we let slip under our radar as we walk through the produce section; but we shouldn’t. So next time you see the alligator pair next to a bushel of apples and are opting for the latter, consider these 5 reasons you should be eating avocados:

  1. They travel well. You probably think this doesn’t matter since you weren’t planning on hauling them with you on vacation. But I’ve written before about the shenanigans produce shippers go through that makes food tough enough to truck. Unfortunately these processes make the food taste that way too.

    Luckily avocados need no enhancement. They don’t start to ripen until they are picked, so the grower doesn’t have to do anything weird to spread his season out. They are also hard as a rock for a good 5 days after being picked so they can be shipped from California to anywhere in America without being harmed.

  2. They’re a good fat. I can’t believe people are still confused by this, yet they are. They hear that avocados are full of fat and they assume that must be bad. Avocados do have fat, but they have no cholesterol and the majority of the fat is polyunsaturated. That’s good for you, similar to olive oil.

    Think of it like Kim Kardashian, fat in the right places is awesome.

  3. They’re nutritionally dense. Even with the calories that come with fat, avocados have a high calorie/nutrient ratio. They are very high in fiber, they have more potassium than a banana and avocados are rich in vitamins B, E and K.
  4. They’re a green fruit (not just literally). Avocados are one of the most environmentally friendly bits of produce you can buy. The California avocado growers practice IPM which makes avocados some of the lowest pesticide fruits out there. One avocado tree sucks up the CO2 caused by a car driving over 2,600 miles over the course of a year.
  5. Avocados are a great replacement food. They can be substituted for a whole host of other, less healthy alternatives. You can use them like a cheese spread on crackers (particularly if you make guacamole), you can spread them like butter on a bagel and you can use a few slices to replace mayo on a sandwich.

There you go, 5 solid reasons you should be eating avocados. And just for you a little bonus tip to get you started:

Bonus Tips:

  • Typically you open an avocado by cutting it in half and twisting. This leaves the pit in the center which is just slippery enough to be nearly impossible to dislodge. Lay the avocado on the table and stab the tip of your knife into the pit. Twist and it should come right out.
  • When choosing an avocado, choose one that is soft but not soft enough that your finger leaves a dimple when you apply pressure. A rock hard avocado is not yet ripe so if you choose that one, don’t plan to eat it that day.
  • Sure, we all know about Guacamole but there are dozens of other recipes that include avocado.



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