Home Healthy Eating Go with Your Gut: How Avocados Help Keep Your Digestive System Happy and Healthy

Go with Your Gut: How Avocados Help Keep Your Digestive System Happy and Healthy

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An ever-growing amount of research points to the significant role the gut plays in your health and well-being. In fact, more than 70% of the immune system resides in the gut, and the good bacteria in it keep us healthy by producing vitamins that help fend off harmful bacteria. 

According to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition, avocados have been proven to help promote gut health and aid digestion due to the number of nutrients and antioxidants they contain, as well as their biochemical profile. Studies have found that avocados are rich in a variety of nutrients that support a healthy gut microbiome. Research has also shown that avocados are a great source of fibre, which can help regulate bowel movements and promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut, and doctors have recommended avocados as one of the healthy fats to add to your diet to boost gut health and the immune system.

Avocados contain healthy fats, such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, that can help reduce inflammation in the gut and improve nutrient absorption. They also contain a range of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, vitamin E and potassium, which are important for overall gut health. In addition, the fibres in avocados can act as prebiotics (food for beneficial bacteria in the intestines) and have been found to improve intestinal health. Eating fibrous foods, such as avocados (4.6g of fibre per half an avocado), is associated with a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and bowel cancer.

Most people are able to enhance their gut health naturally through their diet, which is why the World Avocado Organization are sharing some tasty avo-filled recipes that are easy on the stomach but packed full of flavour and fibre.

Avocado banana granola clusters

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 ripe, fresh avocado, halved, stone and skin removed and mashed
  • 1 very ripe banana, peeled and mashed
  • 3 tbsp. agave syrup (or honey)
  • 2 tbsp. almond butter (or sunflower, vegetable or plant butter)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Equipment

  • Parchment paper or foil
  • Ice cream trigger scooper (or spoon)

Top tip: Granola clusters can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days. For variety, add 1/3 cup dried cranberries or raisins into the avocado oat mixture before baking, if desired.

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 150°C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine oats, cinnamon and cloves. In a separate small bowl, mash avocado and banana together until smooth. Stir in agave syrup, almond butter, and vanilla extract. Add the avocado mixture to the oats, stirring until the ingredients are well combined.
  3. With a small ice cream trigger scooper, add a scoop onto a prepared baking sheet. Flatten with a spoon to 1/2-inch thickness. Repeat to form 30 bites, placing clusters 1 inch apart on the baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.

The legendary super smoothie

Ingredients 

  • 1 tbsp. oats
  • 1 avocado, stone and skin removed
  • 2–3 seedless dates, finely chopped
  • 150ml unsweetened almond milk
  • 125g frozen blueberries
  • A handful of frozen raspberries
  • Toppings: sliced avocado, puffed grains

Equipment

  • Food processor or blender

Method

  1. Pulse the oats in the food processor or blender until fine.
  2. Add all the other ingredients in and blend them until smooth. If you like your smoothie to be thinner, add some extra almond milk. For presentation and colour that pops, blend in a handful of frozen raspberries.
  3. Serve immediately in a glass with a reusable straw or as an attractive smoothie bowl. If you’re having it as a smoothie bowl, top it with toppings of your choice.

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