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Posted on: August 27, 2019 at 7:49 pm

In 2017, Tim Gurner, an Australian real estate mogul, accidentally sparked a torrent of memes with his famous quote that millennials should “stop buying avocado toast if they want to afford a house.”

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“I have seen young people order smashed avocado with crumbled feta on five-grain toasted bread at $22 a pop and more… How can young people afford to eat like this? Shouldn’t they be economizing by eating at home?  Twenty-two dollars several times a week could go towards a deposit on a house,” Gurner said. [1]

This comment was roasted by the internet. Many people pointed out that avocado toast is a fairly small expense and won’t dent the saving needed for a deposit. If a person decided to stop buying daily avocado toast, it would still take about 40 years to save enough money for a house.

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The millionaire was blasted on Twitter with millennials commenting things like I was going to put a down payment on a house last year but then I spent $44,000 on avocado toast, and I don’t drink coffee or eat avocado toast. I’ll take one house please. [2]

However, a new player has entered the avocado toast field: Pura Vida avocados.

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Enormous Avocados

When they say enormous, they mean enormous! Pura Vida avocados are about 18-inches long but can grow up to three feet. They weigh about three pounds each, compared to standard Hass avocados that weigh around a third of a pound. Some of these long-necked avocados grow straight while others curl. Both versions resemble a fruit out of a wonky fantasy film.

These avocados have been grown in southern Florida for years by a company called Miami Fruit, but only recently have caught media attention. 

“Our long-neck avocados are thick, creamy, savory, and slightly sweet,” Miami Fruit co-founder Edelle Schlegel said. [3]

Sounds like the perfect addition on toast mixed with cilantro and lime juice, maybe topped with a poached egg or diced tomatoes. The great millennial brunch. Except these avocados cost $47 a piece… Maybe Tim Gurner had a point after all.

Health Benefits of Avocados

While the debate between “eating avocado toast” and “buying a house” is, let’s face it, silly (that topic is far more complex), there’s something undeniable about avocados: They’re delicious, versatile, and healthy.

While most fruits are high in carbohydrates, avocados are unique since they contain healthy fats and, outside of a healthy dose of fibre, are low in net carbs. They are also rich in vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, magnesium, and have more potassium than bananas. [4]

Yes, you read that right. Banana is an athlete’s go-to source of potassium, but this soft, green fruit has 20% of a person’s daily required potassium intake. One banana contains only 9%. Most people are low in potassium, not realizing the mineral may reduce blood pressure and water retention, prevent osteoporosis and kidney stones, and protect the body from strokes. [5]

Avocados’ healthy fats are composed of oleic acid (omega 9) — the same fatty acid found in olive oil. It can reduce inflammation and may be able to protect the body from cancer. Avocados can also lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, helping to protect the body from high blood pressure and other heart conditions.

Having said all this, it may be surprising to know that avocados are a weight loss friendly food by being more satiating. One study showed that the participants felt more 23% satisfied after a meal with avocado and a 28% lower desire to eat five hours later compared to those who did not eat this fruit. Therefore, incorporating avocados into a daily meal plan can help a person naturally eat less and create healthier habits while feeling full. [6] Remember they’re still calorically dense, so you can’t eat as many as you want, but with them being as filling as they are, it would be hard.  

Bringing Avocados into Your Diet

Although we don’t all have the luxury of eating Pura Vida avocados, (but can you imagine the deliciousness?) there are still local avocado available with all of the above benefits. (Who knows, if the millennials eat avocados at home, they might be able to afford houses now. Right, Gurner?)

Avocados are extremely versatile, which is why they’re found in salads, in sushi, on toast, with meat dishes, and of course in all their glory as guacamole, which can be paired with tacos, chips, burrito bowls, and many other foods.

This may beg the question: Can a person eat too much avocado?

A normal day might include avocado toast for breakfast (goodbye dream home,) salad with avocado for lunch, and quesadillas with guacamole for dinner. Is this overkill?

The answer is it all depends.

“Obviously, there is good reason for including avocado in your diet because it offers so many benefits,” functional medicine dietitian Ariana Cucuzza, RD, says. “But like anything good, people do have a tendency to go overboard. 

“Usually, I would recommend that ½ to one avocado a day is reasonable.”

This, of course, depends on a person’s goal weight, gut health, and diet, as well as the body type, activity levels, and genes. 

It’s also important to consume other sources of healthy fats. If avocados are the only fats you eat, it might be beneficial to decrease your consumption to make room for olives, olive oil, nuts, and seeds.

“To maintain an overall healthy diet, variety is key to get everything that your body needs,” Cucuzza says. [7]

So enjoy avocado toast — especially if you are lucky enough to try the Pura Vida variety.

  1. Sam Levin. Millionaire tells millennials: if you want a house, stop buying avocado toast. https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2017/may/15/australian-millionaire-millennials-avocado-toast-house May 15, 2017
  2. Helena Horton. Millionaire tells millennials to stop buying avocado on toast if they want to afford a house https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/05/16/millionaire-tells-millennials-stop-buying-avocado-toast-want/ May 16, 2017
  3. Rachel Hosie. A farm in Florida is growing ‘long-neck’ avocados that are up to 3 feet long and cost as much as $47 each https://www.insider.com/farm-grows-3-feet-long-neck-avocados-miami-fruit-florida-2019-8 Aug 16, 2019
  4. Dreher ML, Davenport AJ. Hass avocado composition and potential health effects.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23638933
  5. NIH. Potassium. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Potassium-HealthProfessional/ July 9, 2019
  6. Pieterse Z, Jerling JC, Oosthuizen W, Kruger HS, Hanekom SM, Smuts CM, Schutte AE. Substitution of high monounsaturated fatty acid avocado for mixed dietary fats during an energy-restricted diet: effects on weight loss, serum lipids, fibrinogen, and vascular function. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15661480
  7. Cleveland Clinic https://health.clevelandclinic.org/can-you-eat-too-much-avocado/ Aug 7, 2018
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Sarah Biren
Founder of The Creative Palate
Sarah is a baker, cook, author, and blogger living in Toronto. She believes that food is the best method of healing and a classic way of bringing people together. In her spare time, Sarah does yoga, reads cookbooks, writes stories, and finds ways to make any type of food in her blender. Her blog The Creative Palate shares the nutrition and imagination of her recipes for others embarking on their journey to wellbeing.

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