Keto, paleo, IIFYM, Whole30…
More real-food diets are emerging that emphasize high-fat, low-carb, whole-food nutrition full of nutrient-dense foods. Foods like pork, macadamia nuts and cashews, eggs, and of course, avocado.
Not only is avocado a superfood, full of healthy fats, vital antioxidants, and micronutrients, but like coconut, many different parts of the fruit can be used to maximize its benefit.
Enter: avocado oil. Cook with it, add it to bathwater, put it on your hair and bake with it. After reading about the benefits of avocado oil, you’ll want to find any way to use it.
#1: Avocado Oil is Packed with Healthy Fats
Each macronutrient seems to get its time to shine.
After (and during) the war, carbohydrates (which provided the quickest energy in the form of sugar and were the cheapest to manufacture and purchase) were the focus macro. Protein had a couple of decades of heyday after that, and everyone was reaching for a protein shake or bar.
Now, though, fats are finally getting the attention they deserve, and researchers are starting to discover just how essential fats are.
Monounsaturated fat is one of the top fats, and the good news is avocado oil is full of it! Nearly 70% of avocado oil is made of monounsaturated fat, specifically oleic acid.
- If monounsaturated fat were Batman, oleic acid would be Robin. Oleic acid is an omega-9 fatty acid, which comes with: Reduced risk of coronary heart disease
- Skin, eye, and dental health
- Can help with arthritis
- Improves absorption of nutrients in your body
- Weight loss[*]
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#2: Reduced Risk of Coronary Heart Disease
Avocado oil is high in Vitamin E which is easily absorbed and is essential for your cellular health. Vitamin E coupled with the equally high levels of potassium help to destroy free radicals.
What are free radicals? Free radicals are unstable atoms that can damage cells which can inflict damage on your DNA, cause aging, and illness.[*]
Don’t forget, avocado oil is full of oleic acid. It’s this component that has been shown to support a reduced risk of coronary heart disease by 20-40%.[*]
As an added bonus, avocado oil is an anti-inflammatory which helps the artery walls avoid plaque build-up, reducing the risk of heart disease.
#3: Avocado Oil Benefits and Hydrates the Skin
Vitamin E along with the Omega-3s found in avocado oil help to treat dry skin, sunburn, eczema, and even insect bites [*]. It’s able to penetrate deep into the skin, unlike most lotions or oils. It’s because of this deep absorption that the nutrients in avocado oil may even reduce the appearance of scars.[*]
The high protein levels, amino acids, and Vitamin A and D in avocado oil help to reduce wrinkles and/or signs of aging.[*] I know, right!? The added vitamins help to produce collagen. Am I the only one that’s going to start rubbing a thin layer on my scars and wrinkles?
After you sauté those veggies, throw a little leftover avocado oil in your bath.
#4: Avocado Oil Promotes Hair Health and Growth
Avocado oil contains a fatty substance called lecithin which acts as a lubricant. When applied directly to the hair it protects the follicles from harsh climates or wind [*].
The lecithin may support strengthened hair and improved scalp health, allowing your locks to grow longer and fuller. Try it avocado oil alone or with essential oils for a delicious smell.
#5: Supports Improved Eye Health
Avocado oil is high in the antioxidant lutein.
Lutein is a vitamin called a carotenoid, which is essential to the health of your eyes [*].
The body can’t produce lutein naturally, but as an essential nutrient, we need to ingest it through the foods we eat. Dietary sources of lutein include leafy green vegetables, zucchini and broccoli, egg yolks, and of course, avocado.
This amazing antioxidant may reduce the chances of cataracts or macular degeneration[*] and support sustained eye health.
#6: Promotes Tooth and Gum Health
Ever heard of periodontitis?
Also known as gum disease, this nasty condition begins with bacterial growth in your gums and can progress to extreme inflammation ending in tooth loss.[*]
Yikes! But avocado oil contains extracts (avocado/soybean unsaponifiables) that block one of the main proteins that cause gum disease.[*]
#7: Avocado Oil May Support Reduced Inflammation
The most common type of arthritis, osteoarthritis, causes inflammation in the joints. Research has shown that the extracts found in avocado oil (avocado/soybean unsaponifiables) help to ease stiffness and pain. So, people suffering from osteoarthritis might see some relief after adding avocado oil to their diet.
#8: Avocado Oil is Bioavailable and Absorbs Easily
Eating foods full of vitamins and nutrients is important. Also important is to make sure those vitamins and nutrients are able to absorb into your body.
Take the carotenoid antioxidant, for example. Its benefits may help reduce the risk of certain cancers.[*]
It also contains lutein which, as we now know, may protect eye health. But carotenoid is a high-maintenance antioxidant and requires fat to help it absorb into the body.
Avocado oil is the whole package, with all of its monounsaturated fats! Carotenoid and other nutrients can easily absorb into the body with its assistance.
#9: Minerals in Avocado Oil Provide Detoxifying Benefits
Forget about detoxing your body by drinking lemon juice for a week. Instead, start using avocado oil.
It contains magnesium which removes lead and mercury from your vital organs, both of which can have negative health consequences in higher concentrations.[*]
#10: Quality Fats in Avocado Support Reduced Appetite
Full of vitamins, fats, and protein, avocado oil is extremely satiating and can help you feel fuller longer.
This is great for reducing those pesky cravings that have you reaching for a bag of chips or another quick source of low-quality energy.
The essential vitamins, antioxidants, and most importantly healthy fat may support improved health and digestion which helps the weight loss process.[*]
How to Use Avocado Oil
Avocado oil is extremely versatile, as it doesn’t have a strong flavor or odor. You don’t just have to eat it. Just look at all the ways you can use it:
- Cook with avocado oil
- Use it in baking
- Rub it on your skin for a moisturizer
- Use it on your hair as a conditioning treatment
- Put a tablespoon in your bathwater
- Use it as a marinade
- Put it in a dressing
Avocado oil has benefits inside and out.
Adding it to your diet regularly may decrease your chances of being affected by heart disease, certain cancers, arthritis, macular degeneration, and gum disease.
It can also support healthy, beautiful skin, long flowing hair (if you so choose), and the maintenance of a healthy weight.