By Team Best Life – TheBestLife.com
Avocados take the starring role in many healthy recipes for a reason—they contain vitamins E and K, folate and fiber. Not to mention, they’re delicious! Don’t be scared off by all the fat; avocados are high in monounsaturated fat, the variety that can help lower cholesterol, especially LDL or “bad” cholesterol, which contributes to heart disease and other health problems. Still, to keep calories in check, you have to limit your intake of all fats, even the healthy kinds, so try using about a quarter of an avocado (about 60 calories of creamy deliciousness) in your favorite recipes.
How to Buy an Avocado
Avocados start green and turn black as they ripen. In the store, you should gently squeeze and examine avocados to find the right one for your needs: If you don’t plan on using it until later in the week, choose one that is green and firm. If you want to eat the avocado immediately, pick one that is dark in color and just slightly soft when you squeeze it.
How to Use an Avocado
To ripen a hard avocado, place it in a brown bag with a banana and it should be ripe in two days or so. If your avocado is ripe but you aren’t ready to use it, stick it in the refrigerator. You can also save parts of an avocado for later—just leave the pit in before wrapping it to help maintain freshness.
Avocado is delicious plain, and also works well in tons of recipes, including salads, wraps, sandwiches and spreads. Or, try one of these tasty Best Life recipes.
Makes 4 servings
3 cups cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 ripe avocado
2 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
Blend cucumbers, avocado, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste in blender until smooth, about one minute. Use herbs as a garnish and serve.
Nutritional Information / serving: Calories: 71, Protein: 1 g, Carbohydrate: 6 g, Dietary Fiber: 3 g, Sugars: 2 g, Total Fat: 5 g, Saturated Fat: 0.7 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg, Calcium: 21 mg, Sodium: 150 mg
Try These Other Avocado Recipes:
Avocado Spread with Tomatoes and Balsamic Vinegar
Makes 4 servings
1 avocado, skin and seed removed
½ tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
4 slices Wasa Crispbread
12 cherry tomatoes, sliced
¼ teaspoon balsamic vinegar
4 fresh basil leaves, julienned
1. Mash or puree avocado until smooth. Season with pepper and stir in oil.
2. Spread avocado mixture on crispbreads and top each with tomatoes.
3. Before serving, add a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and julienned basil to each.
Nutritional Information / serving: Calories: 144, Protein: 3 g, Carbohydrate: 16 g, Dietary Fiber: 6 g, Sugars: 0 g, Total Fat: 9 g, Saturated Fat: 1.2 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg, Calcium: 9 mg, Sodium: 88 mg
November 30th, 2012