Rock the Guac

The avocado tree is a native to South Central America and is considered a fruit.  It contains nearly 20 vitamins including Vitamins K, B6, E and C and also contains copper, folate, and potassium.

But did you know the healthy fat in the avocado enhances the absorption of carotenoids – antioxidants that fight off free radical damage, protecting healthy cells?  One of these antioxidants, Lutein, may help protect your eyes from diseases such as macular degeneration and cataracts.

And the avocado is close to my heart – literally – its fatty acids can help raise good cholesterol (HDL) and lower bad cholesterol (LDL).  Its fiber, potassium and magnesium can also aid in keeping your heart healthy.

Considered an anti-inflammatory food, it may also help with diseases associated with chronic inflammation.  Studies show it can help ease the pain of symptomatic osteoarthritis.

Give your skin a boost with the avocado’s rich supply of monounsaturated fats, Vitamins C and E.  It can help improve skin tone and help skin retain moisture.  The combination of nutrients can nourish your skin for proper skin cell regeneration, producing collagen and elastin for firmness – who doesn’t want that?

Include them in your diet to reap the rewards, but be aware they are high in calories, so don’t get too carried away!  Great in salads or spread it on whole grain toast (instead of butter).  It goes great on a turkey and provolone cheese sandwich!

So go ahead, celebrate Cinco de Mayo all year ‘round with your favorite tortilla chips, fresh guacamole and drink of choice!

Easy Guacamole Recipe:

Smash a ripe avocado.  Squeeze in approx. 1 teas. lime or lemon juice.  Add a dash of hot sauce and salt and pepper to taste.  Top with fresh cilantro (optional).

Gourmet Nachos to go with that Guacamole:

Set over to 350 degrees.  On a sheet of foil or baking tray, spread out nacho chips, top with shredded cheddar or jack cheese and preheated (in sauce pan) refried beans (black or pinto).  Optional:  top with leftover shredded or diced chicken and/or pickled jalapenos.  Bake until cheese is melted (approx. 5 – 7 minutes).  Watch them, the chips burn quickly.

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