All of the avocado lovers out there can relate to the exciting feeling of taking a fresh avocado fruit, slicing it in half, and then opening it up and using a spoon to take out the creamy flesh, whilst putting the pit to the side.
The avocado pulp not only has a unique texture and taste, but it is also rich in terms of vitamins and minerals, and is composed mostly of unsaturated fats. Many people, thus, incorporate avocados into their daily routine to not only make their meals more interesting but also because of the many health benefits of the avocado’s rich nutritional value.
It is an indoctrinated belief that fruit seeds are not edible, so, although the avocado pit makes up about one-third of the insides of the avocado fruit, it is often discarded in the preparation process as something that is not only useless in the kitchen, but also potentially even poisonous. But did you know that avocado seeds have antioxidant properties, all whilst featuring a unique taste, as well?
The avocado seed does contain a small amount of persin, which is a fungicidal toxin similar to a fatty acid. However, the amount contained in the seed is not enough to be toxic for regular and controlled human consumption.
According to a Nigerian study, which was published in 2009 in the African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines, it is estimated that the safe and controlled amount of avocado seed consumption is 1.4 mg per pound (3 mg per kg) of body weight. This means that most people can safely eat about 2-300 mg of avocado seeds per day, which is a large window considering that an average tablespoon only features a 15 mg capacity.
Aside from worrying about how edible the seed is (you can learn more here), the reason as to why not many people experimented with avocado seeds may be because not many people know how to actually use them. You see, the avocado seed is large, bulky, and hard.
There is no way of just splitting it in half like an apple with a knife and biting into it (at least, not without a struggle). For it to become usable, it first needs to be dried, then mild into a powder. A good trick is to put the avocado seeds into the oven for two hours at 250°F (120°C).
Once the avocado is baked and dry, you can use a rolling pin to crush it into powder. You can also use a coffee grinder, blender, or whatever suits you best. The powder can now be used to spice up your food, or even as an additional ingredient to DIY cosmetics.
Avocado seed powder tastes like a more bitter version of the avocado pulp, which is why not many people like to eat it on its own, as the flavor can be too strong. This is why it’s best used as an ingredient, and not as a base. Add a spoonful of the mild avocado seed into your morning tea, coffee, juice or smoothie.
You can also mix the chunky bits of the powder with other seeds, nuts, and yogurt if you prefer to contrast the sweet and tangy ingredients that are usually found in morning oats. You can even add it into the mix the next time you make rye or whole-grain bread. The bitterness of the powder is also the reason as to why many people prefer adding the ground avocado pit to spicy sauces and dressings.
Not many studies have been conducted on long-term effects of digesting avocado seeds, however, experience has shown that there are many benefits of using avocado seeds in your cooking or skin-care routine.
Aside from the antioxidants in the seeds, avocado seeds also have antifungal properties, are soothing for the digestive tract, help lower cholesterol and prevent heart disease, prevent cravings and aid fat loss, balance blood sugar, reduce inflammation, improve health and appearance of the skin, are an excellent source of potassium, and much more. Here is a selected list of the top three avocado seed benefits:
This is the most famous benefit of the avocado seed, and rightfully so. According to a research study performed at the National University of Singapore, the avocado seed accounts for more than 70% of the antioxidants found in an entire avocado.
This makes it a great gut-cleanser, and reduces IBS and other digestive problems, boosting the growth of healthy bacteria acting as a natural probiotic and preventing candida. Avocado seed powder also features anti-inflammatory properties.
This keeps you safe from viral, bacterial and fungal infections, and treats the ones that did occur. Adding a spoonful to your morning drink will not only strengthen its flavor but also boost your protection during the cold and flu season.
The avocado seed benefits aren’t only applicable for oral consumption, but also external use. The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of the avocado seed are beneficial for sensitive and acne-prone skin because they aid in stopping the damage of free radicals whilst boosting collagen production.
If you make a fine-mild powder, you can add it to your face or hair masks, or you can grind it into larger, more rough particles and then use it with some avocado oil as a peeling cream or scrub that helps remove dead skin from your face, scalp, hands, legs, or even feet.
The cleansing properties avocado seeds provide for digestion also imply that they, in return, also boost the metabolism and reduce metabolic syndrome, aiding weight loss and preventing the accumulation of water weight.
The seed doesn’t just contain a higher concentration of antioxidants, but its soluble fiber content is also rich magnesium, calcium, potassium, and fatty acids.
This not only lowers food cravings but the minerals in the seed aid your muscle performance and recovery, lowering the duration of DOMS. This makes avocado seed powder great as an addition to a pre or post-workout drink.
Reduces the risk of heart disease
Avocado seed powder consumption, as reported by Medical News Today in 2015, has been linked to the reduction of the LDL, or “bad” cholesterol levels in overweight or obese individuals.
Moreover, avocado and avocado seed consumption have been shown to help relax blood vessels in the long run, reducing blood pressure in individuals with hypertension. All of this together boosts your blood flow and reduces the risk of thrombosis, heart disease, and heart attacks. People who have diabetes are also more likely to develop heart failure or coronary artery disease.
A 2013 study published in The Malaysian Journal of Medical Sciences explored the effects of avocado seed powder in diabetic rats. The results showed that regular, controlled ingestion of avocado seed powder proved to be as effective for managing blood sugar levels as anti-diabetic medication.
Although you cannot make a full meal using the avocado pit just like the pulp, there is also no reason to throw it away. Dried and sealed in an air-tight container, avocado seeds may be safe to use even weeks after being removed from the avocado fruit.
Generally, the seed is safe for consumption as long as it doesn’t form mold, which is easily distinguishable as it has a white color and stands out from the light-brown shade of the pit. Now that you know the avocado seed benefit you can add it to your morning drink, not only boosting its flavor ,but also help your heart, your muscles, your skin, and your gut, making you feel better altogether.