Avocados taste great on everything from chips to salad, but there’s more than just taste to these little green fruits. Packed full of healthy fats, avocados have been shown to have a powerful impact on health—an impact that translates into lots of good stuff for your baby!
Here are 10 reasons to include avocado in your diet during pregnancy.
#1 – Full of Healthy Fat
There are a lot of ways to get more calories into your diet, but sugar, carbs, and saturated fats can actually cause you to gain more weight than you need to. Enter in the “heart healthy” fats found in avocados. They make it easy to up your fat intake without all the bad stuff. Just lots of nutrients.
#2 – Speaking of Nutrients . . .
Avocados contain twice as much potassium as bananas, and a hearty helping of your recommended daily intake of vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, vitamin B5, vitamin B6, and vitamin E. They also contain a small amount of magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, zinc, phosphorus, vitamin A, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, and vitamin B3. You’re also going to find 2 grams of protein and 7 grams of fiber in just one serving of avocado!
#3 – Can Help you Absorb Nutrients from Other Foods
As if the jam-packed nutrients found in avocados wasn’t already an amazing benefit . . . they also help your body to better absorb nutrients found in other foods, such as the antioxidant carotenoids found in carrots, sweet potatoes, and leafy greens.
#4 – May Reduce the Risk of Excessive Weight Gain
Because they’re so high in fiber, avocados may actually help reduce the chances of excessive weight gain in pregnancy. In fact, some studies have linked them to weight loss in those that are not pregnant. Oh, and those fiber grams? Twenty-five percent of them happen to be soluble, which feeds friendly bacteria to the gut—another important factor in metabolic health.
#5 – May Reduce Risk of Gestational Diabetes
Again, due to the high amount of fiber, avocados may be helpful in reducing your risk of gestational diabetes (and your long-term risk of diabetes in general). In fact, one study on diabetic patients showed less of a glycemic response to high starchy foods when they were combined with foods high in soluble fiber.
#6 – May Reduce Risk of Preeclampsia
Preeclampsia risks are relatively low, but it has become more and more common. The high amount of potassium found in avocados could help to reduce the risk of preeclampsia, given that a high potassium intake has been shown in many studies to reduce blood pressure. This could also reduce your risk to heart disease in the long-term, well after baby is born.
#7 – Low in Carbs
Though you do need an adequate amount of carbs in a day, they’re often the food that we tend to overeat. Avocados, which actually have 9 total grams of carbs, are considered low-carb because they only have 2 net carbs, thanks to all the fiber.
#8 – May Help with Constipation
During those last few months of pregnancy, irregularity and constipation can become a real issue. Stave it off or, at the very least, hopefully reduce severity of it with the fiber and magnesium found in avocados!
#9 – Eating Avocados Might Improve Your Overall Health
Though there may not be a direct cause and effect in the studies that have examined the health level and eating habits of avocado eaters, it would seem as though people who eat avocados tend to be healthier, overall. Maybe it’s the improved absorption of other nutrients. Maybe it’s because they’re more conscious of what they eat. Whatever the reason, you couldn’t go wrong giving it a try!
#10 – Avocados are REALLY Easy to Incorporate into Your Diet
One of the best things about avocados is how easy they are to incorporate into your daily diet. Guacamole. Chopped on salads. Added to bean soups or chili. Inside of burritos or tacos. These are all amazingly nutritional foods that are well-complimented by avocados.
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