LIFESTYLE

Eating One Avocado A Day Could Lower Your Cholesterol And Keep Your Heart Healthy

08/01/2015 10:52 GMT | Updated 08/01/2015 13:59 GMT
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Eating an avocado every day could help lower your cholesterol and reduce risk of heart disease, a new study has found.

The Journal of the American Heart Association has published a study saying the creamy fruits can work within weeks to significantly reduce cholesterol.

Avocados are packed with monounsaturated fatty acids which tackle unhealthy build-up of low density lipoproteins (LDLs).

The study gave 45 overweight or obese participants three separate meal schedules: one low fat, one with moderate fat and one with moderate fat and an avocado each day.

While none of the people taking part lost weight over the five weeks, but each person experienced a reduced level of cholesterol.

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"All diets decreased LDL cholesterol, the main lipid risk factor for cardiovascular disease. But the diet with the avocado decreased LDL cholesterol the most," Penny Kris-Etherton, chair of the American Heart Association’s Nutrition Committee, told NBC News.

The avocado diet resulted in a 13 point reduction of LDLs, compared to an average of five points on the other meal plans.

In addition to monounsaturated fats, avocados also contain fibre, phytosterols and polyphenols, all of which work to lower LDLs.

"All the foods were exactly the same, except the avocado versus oils that were high in monounsaturated fat on the moderate-fat diet.

"So that was the only difference between the two diets, which then tells us that it's the avocado that has additional benefits which are beyond the unsaturated fat," Kris-Etherton said.

Saturated fats, which are found in animal products such as meat and butter, are the main contributors to LDL concentration in our diets. Unsaturated fats, found in plant products, contain high density lipoproteins which can counteract cholesterol and help our arteries healthy.

Avocados also reportedly have cancer-preventing properties and can keep you fuller for longer.

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