the same amount of avocado lowered the risk for cardiovascular disease by 16% to 22%, according to Pacheco.
Substituting half a serving a day of avocado for olive oil, nuts or other plant oils showed no additional benefit, the researchers note. They also found the risk for stroke was not changed, regardless of how much avocado one ate.
“These findings further substantiate the evidence on the replacement of certain spreads and saturated fat-containing foods, such as cheese and processed meats, with a plant-sourced fat such as avocado, which for the most part, is a well-accepted and popular food,” Pacheco adds.
Samantha Heller, a senior clinical nutritionist at NYU Langone Health in New York City, says avocados are a good source of many important nutrients, including healthy fats, fiber, vitamins C and E, and minerals such as potassium. They are also naturally cholesterol-free.
“Avocados have a creamy, satisfying texture and taste and are a good addition to one’s healthy, more plant-based, balanced eating style,” Heller says.
Tips for adding avocados to your diet
There are lots of ways to enjoy avocados in your diet, she says:
- Serve guacamole with whole-grain tortilla chips
- mix mashed avocado with hummus for a dip served with crudites
- add avocados to smoothies
- top salads and sandwiches with avocado slices
- make avocado toast topped with fresh sliced tomatoes
- try an avocado-based sauce for pasta
You can even make sweets like fudge with avocados, according to Heller says.
The report was published online March 30 in the Journal of the American Heart Association.