Avocado

Avocado

  • Iulia Panait

  • Clasa a 12-a B

  • Colegiul Național “Mircea cel Bătrân

General details

The fruit’s name is derived from two Aztec words: “ahuacatl” (avocado) and “molli”(sauce). Found in Mexico and Guatemala, the avocado tree grows more than one type of fruit, but the most common one is Hass avocado, also nicknamed alligator-pear. This funny name says it all. Avocado has the shape of a pear and its green crust resembles a lot the skin of an alligator. Pass on the story; I’m sure all the little ones would be enchanted by the idea of eating a small crocodile.
An avocado tree can reach up to 35 m in height and 50 cm in trunk diameter; it blooms and bears fruit from January to July. The fruits vary between 7 and 20 cm in length. The fruit flesh of a ripe avocado is light yellow and smells pleasant, tasting similar to almonds. This fruit can be left on the tree 4-6 months after maturing. After having been picked, a fruit will ripen in just a few days.

Symbolism

It seems that scientific research has contradicted the myth of avocado, which people from its original countries have consumed frequently and named it in consequence “the butter of the poor”. Actually, it is extremely rich. Avocado is consumed and exported in the entire world, a world which finds its way back to the roots through healthy food. The avocado fruit is also known as a symbol of love, beauty, trust and fertility. Even nowadays it’s a custom tradition in Colombia that the ideal husband gives his wife avocados as a gift.

Chemical composition and its effect on our health

The health benefits resulted from consuming avocado are impressive. Unlike most fruit, avocado does not primarily consist in carbs, but in healthy fats with lots of nutrients, most important of which being (100g fruit):

  • Vitamin K*: 26% of the daily intake recommended

  • Folic Acid: 20% of the daily intake recommended

  • Kalium: 14% of the daily intake recommended

  • Vitamin B5: 14% of the daily intake recommended

  • Vitamin B6: 13% of the daily intake recommended

  • Vitamin E: 10% of the daily intake recommended

*more Kalium even than bannanas

Avocado is reach in non-saturated fatty acids, which are benefic for the heart, thus making it the most adipose aliment of vegan origin. Our fruit contains primarily oleic acid, essential component in olive oil. Eating avocado will help lower the cholesterol and triglycerides level, as studies have confirmed considerable results. And because it’s strong in fibers, this fruit has become a must when it comes to keeping any diet.
It is the healthy fats mentioned earlier in avocado, which help the body to absorb nutrients from other food beverage like salads. For example, avocado added in a salad strengthens up to 15 times the speed at which oil soluble antioxidants, which prolong clear eyesight.

How do we consume avocado?

Although the best known way to eat a whole avocado is guacamole, dip made from avocados, which has its origins in Mexico, this wonder fruit can also be mixed with tuna and sea fruit salads. Mayo made from avocado substitutes the one made with eggs and can be served as garnish to almost any main course, shouting out for the vegetarians out there.
Aside from its use in dieting and naturist therapy, large areas from the beauty, wellness and cosmetics fields have included avocado into their recipe for success. Natural masks for a clear skin and shiny healthy hair are at arm’s length when you have got an avocado fruit lying around your kitchen. But also, the fact that so many cosmetics brands offer avocado oil based products is not to be overlooked, given that it does have regenerating and hydrating effects.
As a conclusion, it is safe to say that if we keep up a healthy lifestyle with a side of avocado, there will be nothing but beauty and health in store for us.

Personal experience with avocado…

It’s the better half of a decade since, back then pressed by my persistent mother, I found out about the existence of guacamole. Like any other kid my age, I admit my initial resistance towards any type of food colored in green. With time, though, I had to get over this phobia and I must say that the tortilla chips helped. The more you eat, the better it tastes, or should I say the more you discover? I know this was the case for me. It is a sure thing that I had a pleasant time writing this article, given all the supplementary research which broadened my knowledge about avocado.

Recipe

Here it is for you dear reader, the perfect avocado recipe to garnish with red radishes or jacana. Serve with tortilla chips.

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 Tbsp of fresh lime juice or lemon juice

  • 2 Tbsp to 1/4 cup of minced red onion or thinly sliced green onion

  • 1-2 Serrano chilies, stems and seeds removed, minced

  • 2 tablespoons cilantro (leaves and tender stems), finely chopped

  • A dash of freshly grated black pepper

  • 1/2 ripe tomato, seeds and pulp removed, chopped

Bibliography

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