Avocado leaves have more protein, fiber, minerals, and phytochemicals like flavonoids and phenols than fruit. It prevents convulsions by burning fat stored in adipose tissue, lowers blood sugar levels, fights ulcers with antioxidants, and reduces weight. The leaves have a licorice or anise flavor but may be bitter. So start with a raw or freshly roasted leaf of the Mexican variety as a salad dressing and tea to flavor soups.
The leaves of avocado are oval, with a small tip at the front, green on the top, slightly white on the bottom, and the flowers are light green with some yellow. The flowering period is February-March, and the fruiting period is August-September. The fruit is a highly nutritious fruit, suitable for all ages, low in sugar and fat.
We are sure you know that avocado fruit can help prevent the progression of diseases like atherosclerosis, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease, chronic inflammation, and cancer.
But do you know the pulp, kernel, and peel? Avocados have little to no nutrition. Although many cultures have used avocado leaves in cooking, more is needed to know about their health benefits. Before you find out what it is, look at its benefits.
Nutrients in Avocado leaves
Protein and fiber
Avocado leaves are richer in protein and fiber than fruit or seeds. Every 100 grams of leaves contains about 25.54 grams of protein and 38.40 grams of fiber. The fruit contains only 1.60 grams and 2.06 grams of protein and fiber, respectively.
The leaves have high amounts of sodium, magnesium, manganese, iron, zinc, potassium, Calcium and phosphorus. Increased potassium intake helps prevent and treat high blood pressure. Calcium supports the structure and hardness of bones and teeth, nerve function and blood circulation.
Avocado leaves also contain more healthy phytochemicals, such as flavonoids and phenols, than fruit or seeds. Flavonoids are antioxidants with anti-inflammatory, anti-coagulant, anti-diabetic and anti-cancer activities that protect our nerve cells from degeneration.
Phenols are antioxidants that prevent oxidative damage to biomolecules such as DNA, lipids, and proteins. Oxidative damage plays a role in chronic diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular disease. Plant phenols can interfere with cancer processes, potentially reducing cancer risk.
The Benefits of Avocado Leaves
Traditional African medicine advocates the use of avocado leaves to treat convulsions and epilepsy in children. An animal study also validated this usage. It artificially induced seizures in mice with an aqueous extract of avocado leaves.
The extract reduces or delays the onset of seizures in most cases by increasing the activity of the GABA neurotransmitter in the brain, which reduces neural activity.
It fights ulcers
A study shows the antiulcer activity of avocado water leaves extracts. The extract produced obvious dose-dependent antiulcer activity against an artificially induced gastric ulcer in rats, which may be due to its phytochemicals such as flavonoids, saponins and tannins.
Lower blood sugar levels
The avocado leaves are excellent news for people with diabetes because of their hypoglycemic or blood sugar-lowering properties. In a scientific study on rats with artificially induced diabetes, the water leaf extract of avocado has a hypoglycemic effect according to dosage strength. Six hours after administration of a single extract dose, the most significant drop in blood sugar.
When we ingest fat, it stores in fat cells called adipocytes. An animal study in which aqueous and methanolic extracts of avocado leaves treated rats fed a high-cholesterol diet showed that the leaves increased the destructive metabolism of fat in adipose tissue, resulting in weight loss.
How to include avocado leaves in your diet?
Add Mexican varieties of raw or freshly roasted avocado leaves to salads and use the leaves extract as a salad dressing. You can also use avocado leaves to add flavor to soups and stews. The leaves have a licorice or anise-like flavor and may be bitter or pungent, so start with a small amount, such as one leaf or a teaspoon of leaf powder.
One of the best ways to consume avocado leaves is as tea. Just boil a few leaves in a pot and add the right amount of sweetener to suit your taste buds. However, no matter what you use it with, ensure the leaves are clean properly to avoid the harmful effects of fungicide spraying.
What are the side effects of avocado leaves?
When avocado leaves are consumed by lactating (breastfeeding) livestock, they may cause painful infections of the mammary tissue and failure of lactation. Similar results show the mammary glands of lactating mice fed a diet containing small amounts of freeze-dried avocado leaves.
Although there are no conclusive studies on its side effects in humans, it is best to avoid avocado leaves if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.