6 Benefits of Avocado Oil for Vibrant Health
Avocados are practically synonymous now with healthy eating for many reasons. They’re loaded with fiber, packed with heart-health fats, and contain more potassium per serving compared to bananas. They also happen to taste delicious, so that’s definitely a huge plus.
What is Avocado Oil?
Avocado oil is the oil which has been extracted from the fruit of an avocado. (1) Commonly used as a an edible oil, avocado oil is one of the more underrated options, but is known for its moisturizing and regenerative properties. (2)
With its unusually high smoke point, whether refined or unrefined, avocado oil can withstand up to 480 degrees fahrenheight. (3) While the exact smoking point is largely determined by the quality of processing, avocado oil remains to be a good cooking oil option, especially for frying.
In the culinary world, avocado oil is often compared to olive oil. (4) With similar monounsaturated fat profiles, both oils are protected from breaking down during heating. Avocado oil is low in acidity, which increases its smoking point.
Avocado oil is versatile, acting as a flavor carrier across different cuisines. It is abundant in vitamin E and monounsaturated fats, and helps in the absorption of nutrients and carotenoids. Unlike other edible oils, avocado oil is not derived from its seeds. (5)
Since avocado is available all-year-round, some processing facilities choose to alternate processing olive oil when it’s olive picking season, and then switching to during the olive off season. Due to its availability, avocado oil has also become quite popular for cosmetic or skin care use due to its rapid absorption and skin penetration.
How Is Avocado Oil Made?
When the flesh of the avocado fruit is dried, avocado oil may then be extracted at higher temperatures. Following extraction, the oil is then bleached, deodorized and refined, resulting in yellow oil. (6) Cold-pressed avocado oil retains the color characteristics and flavor of the fruit because it is unrefined or less processed. This is why cold-pressed avocado oil has a more greenish tinge to it, with some even having a distinct avocado flavor and scent, both of which are practically absent in the processed yellow avocado oil.
Extra virgin or unrefined avocado oil, characterized by a brilliant emerald shade stemming from the cholorphyll found in the fruit flesh, can be used for cooking at very high temperatures reaching more than 450 degrees Fahrenheit. (7)
- The avocados are washed.
- The avocados are peeled, and the pits are removed.
- The flesh is pressed, leaving behind the pulp, oil, and water.
- The resulting liquid is put into a centrifuge.
- The centrifuge spins at high speeds, separating the oil, water, and pulp.
- The oil is separated from the water and pulp.
- The oil is collected and stored for further refinement. (8)
6 Health Benefits of Avocado Oil for Your Health, Skin and Hair/
1. Nutrient Absorption
Avocado oil in and of itself is not absorbent, but the use of the oil in cooking can add some benefit to your nutrition. You can eat all of the foods rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants you want, but some of them are hard to absorb, making it harder on your body to make proper use of them.
When you add some avocado oil to foods containing antioxidants like carotenoids, the absorption rate increases significantly. In one study, the participants saw greater absorption of alpha and beta carotene as well as lutein with avocado oil than without. (9)
2. Lower Blood Pressure
A study conducted on rats has indicated that a diet rich in avocado oil can help reduce blood pressure. The study looked at kidney responses to avocado oil in the diet, and the conclusions led to the belief that avocado oil in even greater amounts can help lower blood pressure. (10)
3. Periodontal Disease Fighter
Periodontal disease is an oral disease, and one study has shown that soybean oil and avocado oil both have anti-inflammatory properties, which in turn can help treat periodontal disease.(11)
Additionally, those same anti-inflammatory properties seem to help in other ways. Erosion of bone is a part of periodontal disease, and the aforementioned properties are believed to be useful in preventing that particular aspect of the disease from occurring.
4. Arthritis Relief
Millions of Americans suffer from arthritis, and as a result, painkillers are frequently prescribed for pain management. Arthritis in the knees and hips were specifically studied for the belief that the anti-inflammatory properties of both avocado oil and soybean oil could alleviate the symptoms and possibly help stimulate cartilage growth. (12)
The study looked at ASU, which is an extract chiefly made up of both avocado and soybean oils. Some clinical trials revealed that ASU, which has been available in France as a prescription treatment for arthritis, did indeed alleviate some of the symptoms.
The hypothesis that these oils can help stimulate cartilage growth and thus further alleviating the symptoms of osteoarthritis in the knee and hip has not been proven as of yet.
5. Psoriasis Treatment
Many people have sung their praises for avocado when it comes to skin care. Avocado oil in particular, has been believed to have the same effects. In one study conducted on a group of patients who had chronic plaque psoriasis results showed that there was a marked improvement due to avocado oil. (13)
Avocado oil was combined with vitamin B12 in the form of a cream. After twelve weeks of observation, the researchers saw noticeable improvements in the group that was given this particular cream. It would seem that the combination of these two items has significant long-term effects in improving chronic plaque psoriasis when applied topically.
6. Sunburn Treatment
Avocado oil has moisturizing properties that can help soothe sunburned skin. This is due to its high antioxidant content such as vitamin C and E, flavonoids and phenolic acids which combat free radicals that could cause skin damage and even disease. (14)
Avocado oil has been lauded as a natural treatment for nourishing thinning hair, promoting the growth of new hair, healthier looking skin, detoxification of the body, appetite control, increased satiety, and many more.
At the time this article was written, there were no available sources of verified research to validate these claims. This is not to say such research does not exist, but such research studies could not be found at present.
Avocado Oil: A Superfood?
The avocado has been extolled all-around as a superfood. The benefits, both stated and proven, are extensive enough that adding avocado oil and the fruit itself to your daily diet could be recommended.
Overall health seems to be a little bit better in those that eat avocado regularly as opposed to those who do not. Again, not all claims of health or cosmetic benefits could be validated at present, but again that does not mean that the claims are false.
Our recommendation is to begin adding avocado oil to your diet either as an additional ingredient, alternative to salad dressing, or heated in order to cook other foods like fresh vegetables. Try it out for a while and see if you notice any differences. One way to document any changes is to have a detailed physical done, then again after about 6 weeks or longer.