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Picking out a good avocado that’s perfectly ripe can be tricky. Here are a few tips from WikiHow

Check for the attributes of the avocados that you are purchasing.

  • Ripeness: Hold the avocado in the palm of your hand. Gently squeeze the avocado, being careful not to press with your fingertips, as this can cause bruising. A ripe avocado will be soft and will yield to the gentle pressure, but will not be overly squishy. If it is still hard, then it is still under ripe and will take a few days to ripen. You may still opt to purchase under ripe avocados, and ripen them at home.
  • Look: Choose avocados with unblemished skin. Avocados that are shiny are not yet ripe enough, but again, you can still purchase these and ripen them at home.
  • Color: The color of avocados differ depending on the variety. For California Hass avocados, their color turns dark green or purplish-black as they ripen. Florida avocados, on the other hand, have lighter-green skin with yellowish tone, even when they are ripe.

Avoid avocados which are overly soft and mushy, since this would mean that the fruit is too ripe. Other things to avoid when choosing avocados include dark blemishes, brown spots, dents and bruises.

And now 20 reasons picking up avocados is so important: 

From their heart-healthy benefits and skin-loving nutrients to their unique versatility in recipes and making snack times extra delicious, we love having avocados every day! Here are 20 great reasons why you should fall in love with avocado too (if you haven’t already!):

1. They fit all diets!

No matter what eating guidelines you follow, the humble avocado works for all!

2. They’re nutrient dense

Avocados are packed with beneficial nutrients to enhance the nutrient quality of your meals.

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3. Avocado makes an awesome spread

Substitute butter and margarine for a healthy spread of avocado. You’ll boost your nutrient intake, and it tastes great!

4. Boost your fruit intake!

Not much of a sweet tooth? Avocados are actually a fruit, so they count towards your fruit intake!

5. You’ll never need a substitute

Avocados are always in season so you can enjoy them all year round!

6. They’re super versatile

Known for guacamole, dips, and other savory dishes, yet avocados are appearing more and more in sweet dishes too. Think chocolate mousse, ganache, smoothies and ice cream!

7. They’re low in sugar

They may be a fruit, but they contain less than 1g of sugar per ounce!

8. Avocados make great baby food!

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They’re firm enough for tiny fingers, yet mashable and soft enough to be gentle on gums. Rich in healthy fats, fiber, and other nutrients, it makes a great addition to your baby’s first foods.

9. They’re full of healthy fats

Over 75% of the fat content in an avocado is great for your heart! In fact, having more of these healthy unsaturated fats is better for your heart than eating low fat!

10. Avocado boosts your eye health

Avocados contain 81mg of lutein & zeaxanthin, antioxidants known to support eye health as we age.

11. An avocado is an edible bowl for your favorite fillings!

Simply cut an avocado in half, and fill with all sorts of things, from sauerkraut and salsa to diced roast vegetables, a few spoons of curry or bake an egg in it!

12. They nourish your brain and nervous system

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A serve of avocado contains 3.5g of unsaturated fat required for healthy brain and nervous system development

13. They make a great fat substitute in baking!

Swap butter or coconut oil for pureed avocado. You won’t taste it, trust us!

14. They make all things creamy and delicious!

Need something to be thicker, creamier, like say, a decadent chocolate mousse, or healthy banana thickshake? Add some avocado!

15. They’ll keep your cholesterol on track!

Battling a cholesterol problem? Avocados are the richest known fruit source of phytosterols, a natural plant compound that competes with dietary cholesterol absorption.

16. Avocados contain nutrients essential for a healthy pregnancy

Containing folate, vitamin E, B vitamins, iron, choline, and fiber, they’re great for both yourself and your growing baby throughout the entire pregnancy, from conception, birth and beyond.

17. They have more potassium than a banana!

Bananas are known for their potassium content, but per 100g, the avocado fruit contains 485mg of potassium, that’s 127mg more than bananas!

18. They make a satisfying snack

All you need is a little sea salt, cracked pepper and a spoon!

19. There are plenty of ways to eat them

You can grill them, bake them, or eat them raw.

20. You can make ice cream with avocado!

A brilliant, dairy-free, vegan alternative to store-bought ice cream varieties, simply blend 1/2 an avocado and a squeeze of lime juice with 2 tbsp of maple syrup and 1 cup of your milk of choice. Pour into ice block molds and freeze. Delicious!

What are some of your favorite ways to enjoy avocado?

This article was republished with permission from foodmatters.tv.

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