Belly fat is a concern that many people struggle with. Not only does excessive belly fat stand in the way of a perfect body figure, but it also tags along numerous health risks. This pushes people to try all matters of remedies to try and tone down their bellies, including avocado diets.
Avocados can help you lose belly fat because they contain healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats that promote healthy fat storage and cholesterol management. Avocados are also appetite suppressants and help with calorie intake management.
In the rest of the article, I will discuss how avocado consumption can help you lose belly fat. I will also offer hints on consuming avocados to maximize these benefits.
How Avocados Can Help You Lose Belly Fat
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Avocados are a great food to eat if you’re trying to lose belly fat. They contain healthy fats, fiber, and protein, all supporting weight loss. The following are some of the many ways that avocados can help you lose belly fat:
1) Avocados Contain Healthy Monounsaturated Fats
An avocado contains little carbohydrates. A medium-sized avocado contains about 320 calories and 0.6 ounces or 15 grams of healthy fats. This explains why an avocado should be considered fatter than a fruit. The small number of carbohydrates in avocados cannot significantly impact your sugar metabolism.
However, healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats go a long way in reducing belly fat. These fats improve glucose tolerance and influence the body to store fats more healthily.
Researchers from Penn University found that people who consumed at least 1.4 ounces or about 3 tablespoonfuls of monounsaturated fats daily for 4 weeks lowered their belly fats by up to 1.6%. Another study published in the Journal of Diabetic Care outlined similar results. This study found monounsaturated fats prevent fat distribution around the belly.
Monounsaturated fats are believed to down grow the expression of certain fat genes. Eating one whole avocado daily meets the three tablespoonfuls of monounsaturated fats requirement.
2) Avocados Contain Good Cholesterol
High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol is considered good cholesterol compared to low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol found in most saturated fats. Phytosterols, the HDL that avocados pack in plenty, has numerous health benefits, including lowering the risk of strokes and heart attack. LDL is bad cholesterol because it sticks to the walls of blood vessels, increasing the risks of stroke and heart attacks.
Lipoproteins do not dissolve in the blood and end up attaching to the walls of your blood vessels. HDL acts as a carrier of LDL, whereby it moves to the liver and is flushed out of the body. A high intake of HDL thus lowers the amounts of dangerous LDL cholesterol in the body. Lower cholesterol is linked to lower body weight and less fat deposits around the belly.
The study by Penn University researchers established that avocados helped lower the overall amount of bad cholesterol in the body. The control group, which received an avocado daily as an addition to the standard daily diet, had a 2.9-milligrams-per-deciliter (mg/dL) decrease in total cholesterol and a 2.5 mg/dL decrease in LDL “bad” cholesterol. These findings indicate that avocados are good for cholesterol and weight management.
Related Reading: How Many Calories Are in an Egg?
3) Avocados Are Good Appetite Suppressants
Guacamole, an avocado-based dip, is one of the best-known appetite suppressants. The appetite suppression abilities of avocados are widely unstudied. Still, the suppression is linked to the high-fat content in avocados.
A recent study published in the Nutrition Journal found that participants who ate a half piece of a fresh avocado as part of their lunch experienced a 40% decreased desire to eat. The appetite suppression power of avocados lasts for up to 6 hours. This appetite suppression helps in belly fat management by lowering overall calorie intake.
When you feel full, you tend to intake fewer carbohydrates. There are fewer calories for the body to convert to fats and store in the abdominal region.
4) Avocados Boost Gut Health
Avocados contain high amounts of fiber, which aids digestion and minimizes the chances of constipation. Their essential vitamins, antioxidants, and nutrients also benefit gut bacteria. The antioxidants prevent cellular damage caused by oxidizing free radicals in the blood.
The vitamins and minerals in avocado also sustain an adequate amount of gut bacteria and promote the overall health of gut cells. This reduces the number of inflammatory blood markers and bile acids and causes a rise in healthy short-chain acids in the blood. This balance in microbial activity and better metabolism reduces the storage of fats in the body, including the abdominal region.
5) Avocados Improve Diet Quality
The nutrients and healthy fats in avocados help improve the overall diet quality. Avocado contains vitamins and nutrients such as vitamin K, antioxidants, soluble carotenoids, and unsaturated fats that aid in better metabolism and boost immunity. The fat-soluble carotenoids found in avocados are associated with better fat and weight loss.
A study published in the Journal of Nutrition established that adding avocado to salad boosted carotenoid absorption by up to five times. The study linked an improved diet with better weight loss and a reduced risk of metabolic syndrome.
Hints on Avocado Preparation
You must be wondering how best to consume avocados to rip the fat reduction benefits listed above. The following are some tips on how to prepare avocados so that they are most effective in promoting weight loss:
- The best time to have an avocado is during the day. Eating avocado as part of your breakfast will be most beneficial.
- A half the size of a medium-sized avocado per serving is also ideal. This should weigh about 1.7 ounces and release about 155 calories of energy and 0.3 ounces of healthy fats.
- Eating avocado on an empty stomach is not recommended because the high-fat content can cause nausea.
- Avocados can also be eaten at night because their amino acids stimulate the brain and keep people awake for long. The high potassium in avocados also helps with sleep.
- For the best results, avocados should be eaten raw as additions to other meals.
Eating one avocado daily for six months can help you reduce belly fat. This is on top of the numerous other metabolic benefits that come with avocado consumption.
Avocados lower the levels of bad cholesterol levels while increasing the level of good cholesterol. These fruits are also good for gut health and metabolism. You should thus consider increasing your consumption of avocados to enjoy these benefits.
- Science Daily: Monounsaturated fats Reduce Metabolic Syndrome Risk
- The Journal of Nutrition: Carotenoid Absorption from Salad and Salsa By Humans Is Enhanced By the Addition of Avocado or Avocado Oil
- Healthline: How Many Calories Are in an Avocado?
- Diabetes Care: Monounsaturated Fat–Rich Diet Prevents Central Body Fat Distribution and Decreases Postprandial Adiponectin Expression Induced by a Carbohydrate-Rich Diet in Insulin-Resistant Subjects
- Penn State: Daily Avocados Improve Diet Quality, Help Lower Cholesterol Levels
- Nutrition Journal: Avocado Consumption Is Associated with Better Diet Quality and Nutrient Intake, and Lower Metabolic Syndrome Risk in US Adults: Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2001–2008
- Healthline: 7 Potential Health Benefits of Avocado