Washington: Consuming avocados could be associated with better diet quality and nutrient intake level, lower intake of added sugars, lower body weight, BMI and waist circumferences, higher "good cholesterol" levels and lower metabolic syndrome risk, a new study has revealed.
Specifically, the survey data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2001-2008, of 17,567 US adults ages 19 years and older, revealed that the 347 adults (50 per cent female) who consumed avocados in any amount during a 24-hour dietary recording period had several significantly better nutrient intake levels and more positive health indicators than those who did not consume avocados.
Among the avocado consumers, average daily consumption was about one half (70.1 +/- 5.4 g/day) of a medium sized avocado, somewhat higher in male avocado consumers (75.3 +/-6.3 g/day) than females (66.7 +/- 7.3 g/day).
According to the study, Avocado consumers more closely adhered to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans than those who did not eat avocados, as measured by the Healthy Eating Index (HEI).
Avocado consumers had significantly higher intakes of certain important nutrients including 36 percent more dietary fiber, 23 percent more vitamin E, 13 percent more magnesium, 16 per cent more potassium and 48 percent more vitamin K than non-consumers.
Avocado consumers also had significantly higher intakes of "good" fats (18 percent more monounsaturated and 12 percent more polyunsaturated) and total fats (11 percent more) than non-consumers, although average caloric intake of both groups was the same.
The study found that Avocado consumers had a 50 percent lower odds ratio for metabolic syndrome compared to non-consumers.
Metabolic syndrome is a name given to a group of risk factors which, when they occur together, increase the risk for coronary artery disease, stroke and type-2 diabetes.
The results were published in the Nutrition Journal.