To avocado or not to avocado

Avocados.  They are everywhere these days; and they are touted as a good fat and amazingly good for you.

What’s that you say – a good fat, do they even exist?  For years we have been told fat is bad for us, yet we need fat to live and yes, there are good sources of fat.

I’m no nutrition expert – you can read more on types of fats in this lovely simple article here; however an avocado is monounsaturated fat and is said to help maintain and lower total and LDL cholesterol as well as protecting against heart disease and lowering blood pressure.

Vitamin wise they are packed with vitamins B6, C and E and are full of fibre.  Great for keeping you, erm, regular.

They are ridiculously good for you, and half an avocado classes as one of your 5-a-day; however due to the fat content they are often avoided and shunned by many diets, especially those that restrict calories and fat.

I’m a huge fan of them in a salad or mashed up on toast with a little seasoning; they are filling and I love the smooth and creamy taste however I’m following Slimming World and they are not at all welcome to the party.

In fact they are shunned, rejected and ceremoniously ignored as the syn value is high; which I can totally understand, high syn items are bad and should be eaten in moderation(Slimming World encourages that no food is off the menu, as long as your food optimise).

Currently(January 2018) the syns are:

‘Avocado, fresh or pureed (each) = 14 syns’ (there is no weight, which I find strange as they can vary in size, shape and weight).

‘Avocado, fresh of pureed (per 100g) = 9½ syns’ (this seems better).

Slimming World allow 5-15 syns a day as a basic guide and many people internally combust at the thought of ‘wasting’ 14 syns on a fruit(I had to google what it was) when you could eat:

  • 6 bags of sweet ‘n’ salty popcorn(14g bags)
  • 3 Cadbury Freddo bars
  • 6 Oreos
  • 3 glasses of Prosecco.

I’m not slagging off SW in any way, shape or form but it does seem totally crazy that something so good for you is synned so high.  I totally understand that the high fat content makes it unlikely to help with weight loss but it’s a good fat; and surely it’s better for you than any of the above?

And this morning I weighed my avocado, once I’d peeled it and removed the stone it came in at 7½ syns, which isn’t a lot and I could have halved that again if I wasn’t so hungry.

Last week I transitioned over to a full vegan/plant-based diet and the lack of dairy has come as a huge shock to my body; it is craving fat and naturally I just want to turn to the processed rubbish, however a little research and an aimless wander around the supermarket brought me nose-to-nose with an avocado.

I started SW in August 2017, the last time I had avocado was before then.  I started out eating as cleanly as I could, and I felt amazing – yet the six weeks before Christmas I barely lost an ounce.

Why?  Because I’ve slipped back into my old ways of packing my diet with as much ready-made processed crap as humanly possible.

I’d also told myself I would syn sugar and olive oil, as low calorie cooking spray and artificial sweetener tends to make me feel a bit crappy and, le’ts face it – they are full of chemicals.

So I’m back to having an avocado every couple of days, I’m back to synning oil and sugar and hopefully I’m back to feeling great and having good losses – because my first few weeks I was using my syns in this way and having really good losses.

And even if I don’t lose, I feel pretty good for eating well 🙂

 

Lisa x

 

PS: Here are some links I found while researching this post, go and have a peek…

  • I love Slimming Eats for her recipes and articles, and I was delighted to find an article with all the love for the avocado.  Click here to have a look.
  • Pinch of Nom have some lovely recipes, and they have talked about avocados here.
  • BBC Good Food wrote about the health benefits of avocados here.

 

 

 

 

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