Diabetes Nutrition Facts for Avocado

A Heart Healthy and Delicious Food Choice

Chopped avocado on chopping board
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Avocado is a heart healthy fruit (yes, it is a fruit) rich in monounsaturated fats that can add texture, flavor, color and satisfying fat to a variety of food choices. If you have diabetes and want to add variety to your meal plan while boosting your nutrition and avoid major blood sugar excursions, then avocado might be just the ticket. Unlike most fruit choices, avocado does not yield a large amount of carbohydrate in one serving.

Instead, a generous portion of avocado (about 1/3 of a medium sized one) provides about 5 g of carbohydrate (4 g which comes from fiber), making avocado a high fiber, low carbohydrate, filling food. 

Health Benefits of Avocado

Whether sliced, mashed into guacamole, chopped into an egg scramble, or used in a smoothie, avocado is a nutritious food choice. 

Avocados are rich in vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins C, K, E, and B6, as well as folate, potassium, lutein, and magnesium. Avocados are also an excellent source of fiber, which can aid in satiety and cholesterol reduction, stabilize blood sugar, and help to keeps bowels regular. In addition, avocado will not spike your blood sugar, even though it does have carbohydrates. Avocados have a low glycemic index, meaning they do not raise blood sugars at a quick pace. The glycemic index, which uses a scale from 1 to 100 (higher numbers indicate foods that raise blood sugar higher and faster than foods with lower numbers), rates the avocado with a glycemic index of less than 15, making it a great addition to a diabetes meal plan.

Lastly, since elevated cholesterol levels are often associated with type 2 diabetes, avocados are the perfect food. They are low in saturated fat (about 1 gram in 1/4 medium fruit), free of trans fats, cholesterol and sodium and high in cholesterol-lowering monounsaturated fats.

2-tablespoon serving of avocado is roughly one-fifth of a medium-sized avocado.

Each serving provides 5 grams of fat, and 55 calories. 

Whereas 1 tablespoon of butter packs double the calories, about 102 calories and 7 g of saturated fat, making avocado a good substitute for spreads on breads and sandwiches.

Although Healthy, You'll Need to Watch Your Portion

The main thing you'll need to monitor when eating avocado is your portion size. While nutritious, avocados are also high in calories. Excess calorie intake can cause weight gain and prevent weight loss. Therefore, you'll want to keep your portions in check. Depending on what you are eating with your avocado, it's probably best to keep your portion to about 1/4 of a medium sized (a little more than two tablespoons worth). 

Avocado Nutrition Facts: 

1 whole avocado: 322 calories, 29.5 grams of fat, 17.1 grams of carbohydrate, 13.5 g fiber 

1/3 of an avocado, sliced: 100 calories, 9.7 grams of fat, 5.7 grams of carbohydrate, 4.4 g fiber 

1 cup avocado, cubed: 240 calories, 22 grams of fat, 12.8 grams of carbohydrate

How to Pick an Avocado

Look for avocados that are free of nicks and bruises. If you are looking to use it right away, choose one that gives slightly when you touch it with your finger. It should have a dark, green even skin tone.

If on the other hand, you are not using your avocado for a few days, choose an avocado that appears to be more green and is firm to the ouch. For more information on how to store and cut an avocado go here: Avocado Health and Nutrition Facts

Diabetes-Friendly Avocado Recipes

Blend avocado into your smoothies, dice some up and toss it into your salad, or make a batch of guacamole to spread on sandwiches, meat, or whole grain bread. Consider substituting avocado for high calorie, high saturated fat foods like mayonnaise when making tuna or chicken salad. Not only will your meal taste great, it will look great too.

 

Diabetes Nutrition Facts for More Fruits

If you are looking for more information about other fruit choices check out: 

 

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