(ORDO NEWS) — Eating two or more servings of avocados per week has been linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Interestingly, other fatty foods either do not benefit or only harm health.
Avocados are not just a trendy food item. This is a treasure trove of useful items!
Avocados contain dietary fiber, unsaturated fats, monounsaturated fats, and other beneficial compounds that have been linked to good cardiovascular health. Clinical trials have previously shown that avocados have a positive effect on cholesterol levels.
However, the new study, the authors say, is the first major study to confirm a positive association between high avocado intake and a reduction in cardiovascular disease, such as coronary heart disease and stroke.
How did scientists figure it out?
Over 30 years, researchers at Harvard University, USA, followed more than 68,780 women (ages 30 to 55) and more than 41,700 men (ages 40 to 75). None of the participants had cancer, coronary heart disease or stroke at the start of the study.
During the study, 9,185 cases of coronary heart disease and 5,290 strokes were documented. All the while, the scientists were evaluating the diets of the participants.
They paid special attention to the use of avocados. For the convenience of future analysis, one serving of avocado was equal to half the fruit.
Subsequent analysis showed that:
- Study participants who ate at least two servings of avocados every week had a 16% lower risk of cardiovascular disease and a 21% lower risk of coronary heart disease compared to those who never or rarely ate avocados;
- Replacing half your daily serving of margarine, butter, eggs, yogurt, cheese, or processed meats like bacon with the same amount of avocado has been associated with a 16-22% reduction in cardiovascular disease risk;
- Replacing half a serving of avocados a day with an equivalent amount of olive oil, nuts, and other vegetable oils did not provide any additional benefit.
- There were no significant associations for the risk of stroke and the amount of avocado eaten.
“These findings are important because a healthy diet is the cornerstone of cardiovascular health, yet many people may find it difficult to achieve and maintain a healthy diet,” said Cheryl Anderson, Chair of the American Heart Association’s Council on Epidemiology and Prevention. “We desperately need strategies to improve healthy food consumption.”
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