It’s great guacamole is so tasty, but is it good for weight loss? Avocados are a healthy food, which have many health benefits that include lowering cholesterol, improving heart health and even helping to prevent diabetes. So should we all be adding this delicious fruit to our diets? As you probably know, avocados contain a lot of calories which isn’t good if you’re aiming for weight loss.
What Are the Ingredients in Guacamole?
How exactly do you make guacamole? Classic homemade guacamole consists of avocados, white onion, jalepeño, cilantro, salt, and sometimes diced tomatoes. Garlic, certain fruits, and other spices can be added as well.
Beware of some of the packaged options out there, however, as some may include additives, added sugar, and excess sodium. Be sure to check the label for minimal ingredients and sodium content if purchasing pre-made guacamole from the grocery store. There’s really no need for a serving of guacamole to contain more than 200mg sodium.
What Is a Healthy Serving Size of Guacamole?
Considering that a standard serving size of an avocado is only about one-third of the entire fruit, a serving size of guacamole is pretty small. A healthy serving size of guacamole is between 2 tablespoons and 1/4 cup. Any more, and you’re treading into the “too much” territory.
Here is the nutrition breakdown for a ¼ cup serving size of guacamole:
- Calories: 109
- Fat: 10g
- Sat Fat: 1g
- Unsat Fat: 8g
- Mono Fat: 6.5g
- Poly Fat: 1.2
- Carbs: 6g
- Sodium: 165mg
- Fiber: 165mg
- Potassium: 10% DV
Avocados boast a wealth of healthy fats, but they are still fats nonetheless and they can quickly become a high-calorie food if consumed in excess. Some guacamole recipes are also made with excess amounts of salt and can be a sneaky source of sodium.
Health Benefits of Guacamole
Guacamole packs impressive health benefits. From heart-healthy monounsaturated fats to gut-friendly fiber, avocados make guacamole into nutrient-dense condiment.
Potassium is an essential nutrient for regulating blood pressure and balancing the fluids in our body. Since guacamole can often be high in sodium, the potassium in avocados are crucial for preventing bloating and blood pressure maintenance.
Guacamole is also lower in calories than many other dips, sauces, and condiments, making it a healthier choice at a tailgate party or restaurant. However, some guacamole dips may contain mayo or buttermilk, which can add unwanted calories and fat. If you aren’t sure, it’s best to verify the ingredients.
Is Guacamole Good for Weight Loss?
You’re in luck: Guacamole can indeed be a great weight loss snack. While avocado’s high-fat content can cause trouble when consumed in excess, its high fiber content actually promotes satiety and helps keep you full until your next meal. High-fiber foods are linked to weight loss and management, as well as reduced cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar, and inflammation.
What to Eat with Guacamole
Guacamole is an amazingly versatile dip. It’s a blank canvas for whatever you’re craving, whether it’s something spicy, savory, or sweet. Pair guacamole with whole-wheat pita chips and fresh veggies to curb hunger cravings and help you stay full until your next meal. Or try mixing your favorite fruit into a classic guacamole recipe for a sweet bite and extra nutrition. Lastly, don’t be afraid to pile on the hot sauce or sriracha if you like a little heat.
Avocado nutrition facts
Avocados are a great source of several vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and fiber, 3.5 ounces (100 grams), or about half an avocado, contain around 160 calories
This serving also contains:
- Vitamin K: 18% of the DV
- Folate: 20% of the DV
- Vitamin C: 11% of the DV
- Potassium: 10% of the DV
- Vitamin E: 14% of the DV
Avocados also contain a fair amount of niacin, riboflavin, copper, magnesium, manganese, and antioxidant
Furthermore, avocados are low in carbs and a great source of fiber. Each serving contains only 9 grams of carbs, 7 of which come from fiber
Unlike most other fruits, avocados are relatively high in fat — about 15% by weight.
Avocados are packed full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and healthy fats.
Avocado Health Benefits That Prove It’s a Perfect Weight Loss Food
Trendy, popular, and a bit of an overachiever in the health department, avocado is like the homecoming queen of the fats parade. Avocado is actually a single-seeded berry native to Mexico, but it’s quite unlike the blueberries and strawberries you typically find in the produce section. It’s packing a ton of health benefits, too.
The number of calories in avocado far exceeds the 1 calorie in a single raspberry; each avocado has 322 calories and 29.5 grams of fat—10 to 20 times what you’ll find in any other item in the produce aisle. So, it’s safe to say the avocado can arguably be considered more of a fat than a fruit. Moreover, it’s the monounsaturated fat content of an avocado–20 grams per berry–that researchers say make it so special, and deserving of the health food fame.
With its proven ability to lower cholesterol, quell hunger pangs, and even spot-reduce belly fat, the avocado is arguably one of only a few perfect foods to lose weight. Find out why and then dig into these ways to eat avocado to let the delicious weight loss begin! And to help you best stay on track, check out these 21 Best Healthy Cooking Hacks of All Time.
Avocado Has Been Shown to Decrease Belly Fat
Researchers say swapping your cooking and finishing oils for varieties like avocado oil that are rich in monounsaturated and oleic fatty acids can spot-reduce abdominal fat, which may decrease the risk for metabolic syndrome—the name for a combination of negative health markers associated with weight gain.
A Penn State study found people who consumed 40 grams (about 3 tablespoons) of high-oleic oils on a daily basis for four weeks lowered their belly fat by 1.6% compared to those who consumed a flax/safflower oil blend, which is comparatively high in polyunsaturated fat.
A second study in the journal Diabetes Care found similar results: A diet rich in monounsaturated fat may actually prevent body fat distribution around the belly by down-regulating the expression of certain fat genes.
One tablespoon of mild and slightly nutty-tasting avocado oil is about 120 calories and 10 grams of monounsaturated fat—a nutritional profile almost identical to extra virgin olive oil. But unlike EVOO, avocado oil has a very high smoke point, so you can use it for sautés and stir-frys without risk of creating free radicals that can harm your health.
Avocados Are Good Appetite Suppressants
A scoop of guacamole may be one of the most effective hunger-squashers known to man. In a study published in Nutrition Journal, participants who ate half a fresh avocado with lunch reported a 40% decreased desire to eat for hours afterward. At only 60 calories, a two-tablespoon serving of guacamole (on top of eggs, salads, grilled meats, etc.) can provide the same satiety benefit with even more of a flavor punch.
Just 86 the chips and be sure when buying store-bought guac that avocados actually made it into the jar. Believe it or not, many store-bought brands make guacamole without the real fruit!
Avocados May Help Improve Overall Diet Quality
You know that friend who always seems to be the healthiest person you know? What’s their secret? It might just be regular consumption of avocado, according to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a program of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The survey results, published in Nutrition Journal, found that eating half a medium-sized avocado on a daily basis was highly correlated with improved overall diet quality and a 50% reduced risk of metabolic syndrome.
Not only did the avocado eaters report a lower body mass index and smaller waist circumference, but they also consumed significantly more fruits and vegetables, and fiber and vitamin K—nutrients associated with weight loss. Avocado: the gateway to a healthier, leaner lifestyle. Along with eating more avocadoes, make sure you’re trying out these 10 Easiest Habits That Will Guarantee Weight Loss!
Avocado Helps You Absorb More Nutrients
Low-calorie, vitamin-rich and chock-full of important nutrients that can shrink your waist, vegetables are a dieter’s best friend; but you won’t get much benefit from a garden salad without adding a little fat, researchers say.
And when it comes to fat, the type found in avocados reigns supreme. In one study, published in Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, researchers fed participants salads topped with saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fat-based dressings and tested their blood for absorption of fat-soluble carotenoids—disease-fighting compounds associated with improved weight and fat loss.
The result? Veggies topped with monounsaturated fat required the least amount—just 3 grams—to get the most carotenoid absorption, while saturated fat and polyunsaturated fat dressings required higher amounts of fat (20 grams) to get the same benefit.
Another study in the Journal of Nutrition found that adding avocado to salad allowed participants to absorb three to five times more carotenoids. Give your greens the ultimate nutrient boost with a dollop of flavorful guacamole, a few slices of fresh avocado, or a tablespoon of avocado oil-based vinaigrette. Those dressing-on-the-side folks don’t know what they’re missing. But speaking of salad dressings, make sure you steer clear of these worst salad dressings!
Avocado May Lower ‘Bad’ Cholesterol Levels
Apples are so cliche. Researchers now say it’s an avocado a day that can really keep the doctor—and your cholesterol levels—at bay. One study in the Journal of the American Heart Association put 45 overweight people on one of three different cholesterol-lowering diets for five weeks. One diet was lower in fat, with 24% of total calories coming from mostly saturated fat, and didn’t include an avocado. A second non-avocado diet was more moderate in fat, with 34% of total calories coming from mostly saturated fats. The third was equally moderate in fat, at 34% , but replaced some of the saturated fats with one whole Haas avocado per day.
The result? Low-density lipoprotein (LDL), the “bad” cholesterol, was 13.5 mg/dL lower among the avocado dieters than the low-fat group—enough to significantly reduce the risk of heart disease. Researchers attribute the results to avocado’s monounsaturated fat content (a type of heart-healthy fat molecule that has one unsaturated carbon bond), which may play an important part in lowering elevated cholesterol—a factor in insulin resistance, excess weight, and obesity. So grab a spoon, a sprinkling of kosher salt or spice if you so wish, and get snacking.
Avocado Antioxidants Neutralize DNA-Damaging Free Radicals
There’s a war going on inside your body! The free radicals have launched an attack on the mitochondria and it’s sabotaging your metabolism! What the what? Free radicals are destructive rogue oxygen molecules—natural byproducts of metabolism—that trigger various chain reactions in the body that destroy cells and DNA, causing all kinds of health problems.
Antioxidants in fresh fruits and vegetables can help neutralize some free radicals, but they can’t reach the mitochondria—base camp for the free radical army. And that’s a problem; when your mitochondria aren’t working properly, your metabolism runs less efficiently. Enter: Avocado.
Researchers say the results jive with low disease rates in Mediterranean countries where olive oil—nutritionally similar to the avocado—is a diet staple.
In fact, study authors predict avocado oil could eventually be referred to as “the olive oil of the Americas.” So put down the white flag and pick up a green fruit; it’s good for your metabolism and patriotic to boot.