Have a Plant: Fruits & Veggies for Better Health

Insider's Viewpoint: Heidi Diller, Albertsons

April begins the season for Hass Avocados, when they are at their peak of flavor and lowest price. Avocados contain healthy monounsaturated fats, plant sterols, soluble fiber and 21 essential vitamins and minerals. If I could only bring a few foods on a desert island, avocados would top my list.

My favorite way to use avocados is on sandwiches instead of mayonnaise. At 50 calories per tablespoon (which is the same as light mayonnaise), they beat the nutritional profile of mayonnaise hands down! And avocado slices on my soup or chili is a second favorite.

Here are some helpful hints on storing avocados:

  • A ripe avocado gives slightly to pressure
  • Avocados ripen best at room temperature. Place them in a paper bag, close the end to capture the natural ethylene gas which promotes the ripening process.
  • Cut avocados can be sprinkled with lemon juice, and wrapped with plastic wrap and placed in the refrigerator. When ready to eat, just cut off any browned discoloration.

Immune Boosting Avocado Smoothie
Avocado adds a creamy texture you don’t usually find in smoothies. Surprise it on your friends and family. They’ll be amazed it was made with avocado.
Ingredients:

  • 2 bananas
  • 2 cups orange juice
  • 1 cup of strawberries (preferably fresh, but frozen will do)
  • 1 cup of orange or strawberry sherbet
  • 1 cup ice
  • 1 avocado, peeled and pitted
Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.
Serves 3 – 4.

Heidi Diller, RD
Corporate Nutritionist
Albertsons

Fruit & Vegetable Recipes
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