Avocado consumers tend to consume significantly more deficient key nutrients (dietary fiber, vitamins K and E, potassium, and magnesium) in their diet than non-avocado consumers.
Half an avocado is a food rich in nutrients and phytochemicals consisting of the following: dietary fiber (4.6 g), total sugar (0.2 g), potassium (345 mg), sodium (5.5 mg), magnesium (19.5 mg), vitamin A (5.0 μg RAE), vitamin C (6.0 mg), vitamin E (1.3 mg), vitamin K1 (14 μg), folic acid (60 mg), vitamin B-6 (0.2 mg), niacin (1.3 mg ), pantothenic acid (1.0 mg), riboflavin (0.1 mg), choline (10 mg), lutein/zeaxanthin (185 μg), cryptoxanthin (18.5 μg), phytosterols (57 mg) and highly monounsaturated fatty acids (6.7 g) and 114 kcals or 1.7 kcal / g (after adjusting the insoluble dietary fiber), which can withstand a wide range of possible health effects.
Avocados contain an oil rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) in a water-based matrix, which appears to improve the bioavailability of nutrients and phytochemicals and masks the taste and texture of the dietary fiber.
Approximately 80% of the avocado edible fruit consists of water (72%) and dietary fiber (6.8%) and this has been shown to have similar effects on the control of weight as low-fat fruits and vegetables. NHANES 2001–2006 adult data analysis reports that consumers of avocado have higher HDL cholesterol, lower risk of metabolic syndrome, and lower weight, BMI, and waist circumference than nonusers.
An avocado fruit (136 g) has nutrient and phytochemical profiles similar to 1.5 ounces (42.5 g) of tree nuts (almonds, pistachios, or walnuts), which have heart health claims.
Choosing to eat an avocado is an ideal option for people with liver health problems. Although the creamy, smooth, yellowish-green flesh of an avocado is loaded with different kinds of health benefits, its healthy fats, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties make this fruit a superstar for anyone working to defend a compromised liver.
People with fatty liver disease, viral hepatitis, or a liver that has persevered after exposure to alcohol, drugs, or other toxins, can improve their health by choosing foods wisely.
Foods that contain a lot of saturated fat, processed sugar, or chemicals can cause or damage liver cells, and therefore may exacerbate the liver condition.
On the other hand, foods rich in fiber, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients can protect liver cells from damage. Densely packed with nutrients that support liver cells, avocados fall directly into the category of “liver-friendly foods.”
Components of avocado related to good liver health
The following section is an evaluation of the many nutrients and phytochemicals in avocado with possible benefits for liver health. Avocados have a compositional profile similar to that of tree nuts, which have a heart health claim, with less than half the calories.
Avocados can fit into a liver and heart-healthy dietary pattern, such as the DASH diet plan. Avocados contain a fruit oil rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) with 71% MUFA, 13% polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), and 16% saturated fatty acids (SFA).
As the avocado fruit mature, saturated fat decreases, and monounsaturated oleic acid increases. Using avocado sauces and spread products as an alternative to more traditional, SFA-rich spread products or sauces can help reduce the dietary intake of SFA.
Dietary fatty acids are involved in liver lipogenesis and could play a dual role in the pathogenesis of liver steatosis, as they are involved in its development and the prevention or reversal of liver fat accumulation.
Valuable for people with a fatty liver, “healthy” avocado fats can improve a person’s cholesterol profile by lowering low-density lipoproteins (also known as LDL or bad cholesterol) and raising high-density lipoproteins which are also known as good cholesterol or HDL.
- Dietary fiber
The carbohydrates of the avocado fruit are composed of approximately 80% dietary fiber, consisting of 70% insoluble fiber and 30% soluble fiber. Avocados contain 2.0 g and 4.6 g of dietary fiber per 30 g and half fruit, respectively.
Therefore, moderate consumption of avocado can help achieve an adequate intake of 14 g of dietary fiber per 1000 kcal, as approximately one-third of this fiber level can be achieved by consuming half of an avocado.
DFs have been shown to reduce the translocation of bacterial products such as LPS; this would serve to reduce liver exposure to LPS and other pro-inflammatory products derived from microbes.
This could reduce the chance of fatty liver progressing to the inflammatory form known as non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Increased activity of antioxidant and detoxification enzymes may help prevent the transition from fatty liver to NASH.
Avocados contain very little sugar as compared to other fruits. Half of an avocado contains only about 0.2 g of sugar (for example, sucrose, glucose, and fructose).
The primary sugar found in avocados is a unique seven-carbon sugar called Dmannoheptulose, and its reduced form, persecutor, provides approximately 2.0 g per half fruit, but this is not considered sugar in the composition database, as it does not behave nutritionally like conventional sugar and is more of a unique phytochemical for avocados.
Preliminary research by D-mannoheptulose suggests that it may support blood glucose control and weight control, thus keeping the liver healthy. The glycemic index and load of avocado are expected to be approximately zero.
Adequate potassium intake may promote blood pressure control in adults according to clinical evidence. The mean intake of potassium in adults in the United States was approximately 3,200 mg per day in men and 2,400 mg per day in women, which is less than the recommended intake of 4,700 mg per day.
Avocados contain approximately 152 mg and 345 mg of potassium per 30 g and half a fruit, respectively. Furthermore, avocados are naturally very low in sodium with just 2 mg and 5.5 mg of sodium per 30 g and half a fruit, respectively.
The blood pressure health properties statement identifies foods containing 350 mg of potassium and less than 140 mg of sodium per serving as potentially appropriate.
Low potassium levels can cause low levels of nitric oxide and blood vessel dysfunction which “can lead to insulin resistance, hypertriglyceridemia, and glucose intolerance which in turn can be harmful to the liver. So, an adequate amount of potassium in avocado can enhance the healthy liver.
Magnesium acts as a cofactor for many cellular enzymes required in energy metabolism and can help maintain the normal vascular tone and insulin sensitivity. Preliminary preclinical and clinical investigations suggest that a low magnesium level may play a role in cardiac ischemia.
Magnesium has been shown to inhibit fat absorption to improve postprandial hyperlipidemia in healthy subjects. Avocados contain approximately 9 and 20 mg of magnesium per 30 g and half a fruit, respectively.
Magnesium stimulates cellular activity so that toxins are released into the bloodstream. Additionally, magnesium supplementation can improve liver function in certain liver diseases.
When the magnesium content in liver cells is low, leukocytes and macrophages become very active locally, releasing many inflammatory cytokines and recruiting more inflammatory cells in the liver. This inflammatory response causes damage to liver cells, and the repair process that follows involves fibrosis, which exacerbates liver cirrhosis.
So, to protect the liver from inflammation and various inflammatory conditions, magnesium is very important.
Avocados can help the body make a type of antioxidant called glutathione. The liver needs glutathione to filter out harmful substances and protect liver cells from damage. Probably due to repeated injury experience, people with chronic liver disease are often low in glutathione. Avocados are the main food source of this master antioxidant.
Avocados are one of the few foods that contain significant levels of vitamins C and E. Vitamin C plays an important role in recycling vitamin E to maintain circulatory antioxidant protection, such as the possible decrease in the rate of cholesterol oxidation.
Evidence suggests that vitamin C may contribute to vascular health and stabilization of arterial plaque. Vitamin C may have greater protective effects of CVD in specific populations such as smokers, obese and overweight people; people with high cholesterol, hypertension, and type 2 diabetics; and people over 55 years old.
The avocado contains 2.6 mg and 6.0 mg of vitamin C per 30 g and half a fruit, respectively. Avocados contain 0.59 mg and 1.34 mg of vitamin E (α-tocopherol) per 30 g and half an avocado, respectively.
A randomized clinical study suggested that a combination of vitamin C and E may delay atherosclerotic progression in hypercholesterolemia people.
Vitamin C protects against hepatotoxic substances and provides antioxidant and cytoprotective activity to hepatocytes. Vitamin E supplements can decrease steatosis, inflammation, and cell injury in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Vitamins C and E also help reduce toxin levels in the liver and body.
Vitamin C increases glutathione levels in the liver. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin and it removes free radicals found in fat cells. Neutralizing or disabling harmful free radicals in the liver is essential to protect liver cells from damage.
- Vitamin K1 (phylloquinone)
Vitamin K1 works as a coenzyme during the synthesis of the biologically active form of a series of proteins involved in blood clotting and bone metabolism. Phylloquinone (K1) from plant-based foods is considered the main source of vitamin K in the human diet.
Vitamin K1 in its reduced form is a cofactor of the enzymes that facilitate an activity for coagulation. The amount of vitamin K1 found in avocados is 6.3 μg and 14.3 μg per 30 g and half a fruit, respectively.
Some people taking blood-thinning medications are concerned about vitamin K intake; however, the level of avocado vitamin K1 per ounce is 150 times less than the 1000 μg K1 that is expected to potentially interfere with the anticoagulant effect of medications such as warfarin (Coumadin).
This vitamin is stored in the liver and fatty tissue and plays a key role in the coagulation and anticoagulation process. To do this, it participates in the synthesis of protein factors in the liver to control bleeding.
Vitamin K, which is known to suppress any cellular inflammation. Often cited as a staple food in an anti-inflammatory diet, avocados contain vitamin K, a nutrient known to calm cellular inflammation.
Because inflammation of liver cells precedes cell injury, anti-inflammatory intervention is a reliable approach to supporting liver health.
- B vitamins
Deficiencies in B vitamins such as folate and B-6 can increase homocysteine levels, which could reduce vascular endothelial health and increase the risk of heart disease which in turn can directly affect the liver as well.
Avocados contain 27 μg of folic acid and 0.09 mg of vitamin B-6 per 30 g and 61 μg of folic acid, respectively, and 0.20 mg of vitamin B-6 per half fruit.
Scientists have shown that phytochemicals extracted from avocado selectively induce cell cycle arrest, inhibit growth, and trigger apoptosis in precancerous and cancer cell lines. Several studies indicate that phytochemicals extracted from avocado promote the proliferation of human lymphocyte cells and decrease chromosomal aberrations, such as chromosomal breaks.
The primary carotenoids of avocado are a subclass known as xanthophyll’s, fat-soluble oxygen-containing antioxidants. Xanthophyll, like lutein, are more polar than carotenes (the other carotenoid subclasses, including β-carotene), thus they have a much lower propensity for pro-oxidant activity.
Avocados have the highest total lipophilic antioxidant capacity among fruits and vegetables. Xanthophyll appears to reduce circulating oxidized LDL-C, a preliminary biomarker for the initiation and progression of vascular damage.
The results of the Los Angeles Atherosclerosis Study, a prospective study, suggest that the highest levels of plasma xanthophyll were inversely related to the progression of carotid intima-media thickness, which may protect against early atherosclerosis.
Avocado consumption can be an important dietary source of xanthophyll carotenoids. Hass avocado carotenoid levels tend to increase significantly as the harvest season progresses from January to September.
In Hass avocados, xanthophyll, lutein, and kryptoxanthin predominate over carotenes, contributing approximately 90% of total carotenoids. The USDA reports lutein and zeaxanthin at 81 µg and 185 µg per 30 g and half fruit, respectively, and kryptoxanthin at 44 µg and 100 µg per 30 g and half fruit, respectively.
However, a more complete analysis of avocados, including xanthophyll, has found much higher levels ranging from 350 to 500 μg per 30 g to 800 to 1100 μg per half fruit at harvest.
The color of the avocado pulp varies from dark green just below the skin to pale green in the middle section of the pulp and to yellow near the seed. Total carotenoid concentrations were found to be higher in dark green meat near the skin.
The intestinal absorption of carotenoids depends on the presence of fat in the diet to solubilize and release carotenoids to transfer them to the gastrointestinal fat micelle and then to the circulatory system.
The avocado fruit has a unique matrix of oil and unsaturated water naturally designed to enhance the absorption of carotenoids. For salads, a major source of carotenoids, reduced-fat or fat-free salad dressings are common in the market and these dressings have been shown to significantly reduce the absorption of carotenoids compared to full-fat dressings.
Similar clinical research has shown that adding avocado to your salad without dressing, or with reduced-fat / fat-free dressing and serving avocado with sauce increases the bioavailability of carotenoids 2 to 5 times.
Avocado’s greatest nutritional impact stems from its spectacular variety of carotenoids, which scavenge free radicals and play an important role in eye health.
Scientists believe that this diversity of carotenoids is a key factor in avocado’s anti-inflammatory properties. Phytosterols in avocado (stigmasterol, campesterol, and beta-sitosterol) are believed to help prevent over-synthesis of pro-inflammatory PGE2 by connective tissue.
These effects help explain avocado’s ability to help prevent osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. According to researchers, the lutein and zeaxanthin content in avocado protect eye health as well it also inhibits Helicobacter pylori which is a bacteria associated with the development of stomach cancer.
As reactive oxygen species and oxidative damage to biomolecules, carotenoids are involved in the cause and progression of chronic liver diseases (CLD), including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), which is one of the main causes of morbidity and mortality in all the world.
Therefore, dietary antioxidants inactivating reactive oxygen species and obstruct oxidative damage are considered vital prophylactic strategic molecules.
Preliminary evidence suggests beneficial effects of fruit phenolics on reducing CVD risk by reducing oxidative and inflammatory stress, enhancing blood flow and arterial endothelial health, and inhibiting platelet aggregation to help maintain vascular health.
Avocados comprise of a moderate level of phenolic compounds contributing 60 mg and 140 mg gallic acid equivalents (GAE) per 30 g and one-half fruit, respectively. The avocado also contains a total antioxidant capacity of 600 μmol Trolox Equivalent (TE) per 30 g or 1350 μmol TE per one-half fruit.
This places avocados in the mid-range of fruit phenolic levels. Avocados contain the highest fruit lipophilic antioxidant capacity which may be one factor in reducing serum lipid peroxidation and promoting vascular health.
Polyphenol contains abundant antioxidants in the diet and these act as natural scavengers for toxic elements and, thus, their intake has been directly connected with a reduced frequency of several hepatic ailments, particularly hepatocellular carcinoma in humans. Phenolic also influences hepatotoxicity and exhibits anti-inflammatory effects through altered mechanisms.
Avocados are the richest known fruit source of phytosterols with about 26 mg and 57 mg per 30 g and one-half fruit, respectively. Other fruits contain substantially fewer phytosterols at about 3 mg per serving.
The phytosterol content of avocado is lower than that of fortified foods and dietary supplements. The natural phytosterol glycosides and unique emulsified fat matrix of avocado may help promote stronger intestinal cholesterol blocking activity than fortified foods and supplements.
Beta-sitosterol can compete with dietary cholesterol during absorption by the intestines, thereby reducing cholesterol absorption and decreased hepatic cholesterol synthesis as it is one of the three phytosterols found in avocado.
The best way of consuming Avocado for healthy liver
People eating a diet for good liver health often got their food to be dry, a consequence of cutting out moist and potentially inflammatory fats (like red meat, butter, sour cream, and mayonnaise).
The almighty avocado offers a culinary contrast to brittle, crunchy, dry health foods with its creamy texture whether it is eaten mashed, cubed, whipped, or sliced.
For the people who are concerned about their liver, avocado’s healthful creaminess is just one small reason to include it in their diet – second to the liver cell benefits gained from this amazing fruit’s favorable fat profile, potent antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Easy & Healthy Avocado Chicken Salad
Ingredients; 1 large chicken breast, 1 ripe avocado, 1 apple, 1/2 cup celery, 1/4 cup red onion, 2 Tbsp finely chopped coriander, 2 teaspoons lime juice, salt, and pepper, olive oil
- Butterfly your chicken by laying the cutlet flat and slicing it parallel with a knife. Season with salt and pepper. Place the chicken breasts into a lightly oiled skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until the chicken becomes brown and opaque throughout 2-4 minutes each side. Remove from heat and set aside for a few minutes. Finely chop the chicken breast and toss it into a large bowl.
- Chop your veggies. Wash, dry, peel and finely chop your red onion, apple, celery, and avocado. Toss into a bowl with chicken. Mash the avocado gently until all of the ingredients are well mixed
- Sprinkle in coriander. Add in salt, pepper, and lime juice according to the taste.
- Serve as a sandwich or on a bed of greens with a little drizzle of olive oil!
Tips for preparing Avocado
- Store avocados at room temperature, taking into account that it can take 4-5 days to ripen. To speed up the ripening process, place them in a paper bag along with an apple or banana. When the outer skins are black or dark purple in color and yield to gentle pressure, they are ready to eat or refrigerate.
- Wash them before cutting so dirt and bacteria don’t transfer from the knife to the pulp.
- While guacamole might be said to be the most popular way to eat avocado, you can also puree and mix it with pasta, substitute butter or oil in your favorite good baked recipes, or spread or slice on sandwiches.
- Remember that not all avocado dishes are created equal when ordering at a restaurant. Some items, such as avocado fries and avocado egg rolls, are covered in dough and fried, making them much higher in calories and fat.