Scientists from Harvard found that monounsaturated fats, like avocados and nuts, can be good for the heart.
The research is published in the Journal of the American Heart Association and was conducted by Charlotte Pratt et al.
In the study, the team examined data from more than 100,000 adults who participated in the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study.
They found that those who ate at least two servings of an avocado each week, which equates to about two-thirds to one whole avocado, had fewer incidents of cardiovascular disease compared to adults who consumed less.
This equated to about a 16% reduced risk for cardiovascular disease and a 21% reduced risk for coronary heart disease. No differences were noted with stroke
The team also found that swapping a half-daily serving of avocado in place of similar amounts of margarine, butter, egg, yogurt, cheese, or processed meats correlated with fewer incidents of cardiovascular disease.
The researchers suggest that the benefits came from heart-healthy fats. For instance, when they replaced avocado with nuts, they didn’t see a difference in associated heart disease risks.
Other scientists reviewed the study and notes that while more research is needed with diverse study participants, avocados can be heart-healthy sources of fat.
They contain 5 grams of monounsaturated fat, only 1 gram of saturated fat, and are loaded with potassium and contain little or no sodium.
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