Eat Your Way to Health with Guacamole

http://www.motherearthliving.com/Food-Matters/Eat-Your-Way-To-Health-With-Guacamole.aspx

J.PattonHello, readers. Today, I have a confession to make: My name is Justine Patton, and I am an avocado addict.

It’s true. If I had my way, I would eat avocados at every meal. (Avocado pancakes, anyone? Haha, just joking.) Yesterday, I worked a double shift at my other job at On the Border Mexican Cantina, and on my break I chowed down on some delicious guacamole. While I was munching, I wondered, “Just how good are avocados for you?” So, I decided to do some investigating.

I found out that the avocado, which is a member of the fruits food group, is considered a “nutrient dense food,” meaning it gives your body a substantial amount of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Avocados, or alligator pears, as they are sometimes called, contribute nearly 20 vitamins and minerals, including:

• Vitamin E
• Vitamin C
• Folate
• Fiber
• Iron
• Potassium
• Vitamin K
• Niacin
• Riboflavin

7-26-11-avocado 
Avocados are considered a "nutrient dense" food and contribute to healthy diets.
Photo by clkao/Courtesy
Flickr 

My mom always told me that those baby carrots on my plate that I despised would “make my eyes pretty,” which I later found out meant they were good for my eyesight. Turns out, avocados are too. Avocados contain lutein, which has been shown to help maintain healthy eyesight as we get older.

Since avocados are full of omega-3 fatty acids, they can also help the aging process by making skin appear younger.

Avocados also contain “good” fats that may help reduce blood cholesterol levels and decrease your risk for heart disease. Because of this, avocados are included in dietary programs all over the world, including USDA’s MyPlate program and the American Diabetes Association’s Diabetes Food Pyramid.

So, now that you’ve got the scoop on avocados, check out this recipe for homemade guacamole. It only takes about 10 minutes to make, and its mild flavor is so delicious everyone will want to try some.

Mama’s Homemade Guacamole 

SERVES 8

• 4 ripe avocados, seeded, peeled, and cut in chunks
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• 1/2 small sweet white onion, minced
• 1 ripe Roma tomato, seeded and diced
• Salt and pepper, to taste

1. Mash avocados with lemon juice in a bowl, leaving some chunks.

2. Gently stir in remaining ingredients and serve immediately.

Click here for more recipes and tips on guacamole preparation and storage