- This Wanderlust Wednesday is taking a foodie spin with a staple in our home and one of every nutritionist’s favourite superfoods! Yesterday morning I woke early to grab my yoga mat and teach classes to grade ones through the school board and needed a quick breakfast. The perfect fix: avocado topped with a sprinkling of Himalayan salt and spicy red pepper flakes.
- We typically have half an avocado a day through the week (with weekends reserved for ripening a new bunch on the countertops) and for good reason! Avocados contain vitamins A, C, E, and K and are packed full of antioxidants to protect your skin from environmental damage and the harsh winter winds. This is your complete guide from the ACTIVEist to the avocado addicts alike, with 10 things you didn’t know about the Alligator Pear!
1. Avocados are a fruit
- There’s a nifty little thing in the nutritional sciences called the doctrine of signatures that shows how the shape of food corresponds to the organ it benefits. Avocados are shaped like the female reproductive system and what’s more, they take exactly 9 months to grow!
3. The Alligator Pear
- Beyond the doctrine of signatures, the look of the avocado was also used to determine its name. It’s alternatively called the alligator pear because of the scaly exterior and its unique pear shape.
4. An Aztec Symbol
- Avocado trees will produce the biggest fruit when paired with a neighbouring tree to pollinate and the fruit typically grows in pairs making them an Aztec symbol of love and fertility. ❤
- The Name of the avocado is derived from the Aztec word “ahuacatl.”
5. The Banana Peel
- The highest concentration of carotenoids occur in the darkest flesh just beneath the skin. To reap the most of these antioxidants, peel your avocados like you would a banana.
- The method: Slice the avocado down the middle so that the pit is intact. Gently twist to separate the halves and peel away.
6. The perfect salad companion
- Due to the healthy fats, one cup of fresh avocado (150 grams) added to a salad of romaine lettuce, spinach, and carrots was shown to increase absorption of carotenoids from the salad between 200-400%(!) as referenced by WHF.
7. One Mans Superfood May Not Be Anothers
- Some blood types are said to react to avocados and some people have trouble digesting the fats and may need the added support of digestive enzymes. The Key: see if it feels right for you.
8. Variety Is The Spice Of Life
- There are over 500 different varieties. According to WHF, 95% of all avocados grown in the United States are produced in California and the Avocado California Commission (who knew!) states that approximately 95% of the total crop each year comes from the Hass variety.
9. Holistic Life Hacks
- Avocados make excellent replacements for heavy creams in wholesome soups as they have a rich, creamy texture.
10. The ACTIVEist
- Mono meals allow for easy digestion to feel lighter in yoga postures
- The essential fatty acids (the good fats) in avocados provide sustainable energy for low intensity exercise
- These fats also help to satiate the body so you don’t become hungry part way through (a growling stomach is, after all, a little distracting while lying in savasana)
- The essential fatty acids are anti-inflammatory aiding in the body’s recovery post workout.
Whether it be as a pre workout snack or fuel for the day ahead, avocados are a food to love!
Wishing you all the perfect avocado omen,