National Guacamole Day: does “Guac” benefit type 2’s?
Guacamole originated in southern Mexico. The Aztecs invented guacamole using local ingredients: avocados, tomatoes, chiles, and salt. In the 16th century, the Spanish put their own spin on the recipe by adding European flavors like onion, lime, and cilantro. We celebrate National Guacamole Day which is ALSO Mexican Independence Day on Thursday, September 16th. So let’s examine the benefits for type 2’s in each “guac” ingredient and give you the best recipe!
Ingredients that benefit type 2’s
Living with type 2 or prediabetes, it’s important to know what can be done to help lower the risk of both conditions. Diet plays a direct role in type 2. Eating a healthy diet, reaching and maintaining a healthy weight and regular exercise are key to managing type 2 risk factors and healthy lifestyle.
We know that with type two there are many foods we should cut out of our diet, such as unhealthy sources of fats, carbohydrates and foods with added sugar. But, it’s also about what we should include, swap out or add to our diet to make it balanced and healthy. Eating a variety of healthy foods from all food groups is an important part of a healthy diet for people with type 2. This includes heart healthy fats such as avocado, the main ingredient in guacamole.
What else is in guacamole?
Garlic - adding incredible flavor and dimension to your guacamole
- Garlic is known to boost the function of the immune system. It can help you fight off everyday illnesses like the flu or a cold. The antioxidants found in garlic reduce cell damage and aging which can prevent certain diseases.
- Garlic is very nutritious and doesn’t have very many calories. Instead of adding a lot of salt, oils or butters to food, adding a clove of garlic enhances the flavor of whatever you are making and is vitamin rich.
- Garlic can reduce blood pressure and improve cholesterol levels.
- Garlic has antibiotic, antibacterial and antimycotic action because of allicin and other sulfur compounds.
Lemon - It adds flavor, and acidity which turns average dishes into something amazing. It also keeps your guacamole from turning brown and ugly - it keeps the guac beautiful and green for up to 3 days! Plus, after you cut your lemon and squeeze it you can use it to clean your cutting board to take away the smell of garlic and onions!
- lemons contain pectin fiber, which assists in fighting hunger cravings. The fiber expands in your stomach which makes you feel more physically full for longer.
- Lemons have Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps protect your cells against the effects of free radicals
- from them being that acidic, they can prevent kidney stones because the acid increases urine volume and urine pH, which creates a less favorable environment for kidney stones to form.
- According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), just one onion contains 25.3 mg of calcium. Calcium helps in maintaining strong bones.
- Researchers found that the risk of colorectal cancer was 79% lower in those who regularly consumed allium vegetables, such as onions.
- The flavonoids in onion help in reducing bad cholesterol in the body and thiosulfinates are known to keep the consistency of the blood right as they make the blood thinner. Due to this, the risk of heart attack and stroke is reduced.
Cilantro (Coriander) - Coriander is a fragrant, antioxidant-rich herb that has many culinary uses and health benefits. It is a staple in many Mexican dishes such as guacamole.
It may help lower your blood sugar, fight infections, and promote heart, brain, skin, and digestive health.
Tomatoes - Tomatoes are loaded with a substance called lycopene. It gives them their bright red color and helps protect them from the ultraviolet rays of the sun. In much the same way, it can help protect your cells from damage. Tomatoes also have potassium, vitamins B and E, and other nutrients.
- 3 avocados - peeled, pitted, and mashed
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup diced onion
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 roma (plum) tomatoes, diced
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 pinch ground cayenne pepper (Optional)
In a medium bowl, mash together the avocados, lime juice, and salt. Mix in onion, cilantro, tomatoes, and garlic. Stir in cayenne pepper. Refrigerate 1 hour for best flavor, or serve immediately. (If you want it more spicy, add a sliced jalapeño or the cayenne pepper.)
You can add your guacamole to toast, sandwiches, soups, eggs, potatoes, salad dressings, you name it! This delicious and healthy “dip” proves to be so much more as it boosts our immunities, and provides us with healthy fats. For more recipes and information about maintaining a healthy lifestyle with type 2 diabetes join our online community Winning Type 2 Diabetes Together!