Monday, 23 April 2018

12 health benefits of avocado

Avocados are a stone fruit with a creamy texture that grow in warm climates. Their potential health benefits include improving digestion, decreasing risk of depression, and protection against cancer.

Also known as an alligator pear or butter fruit, the versatile avocado is the only fruit that provides a substantial amount of healthy monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA). Avocados are a naturally nutrient-dense food and contain nearly 20 vitamins and minerals.


Eating a diet that contains plenty of fruits and vegetables of all kinds has long been associated with a reduced risk of many lifestyle-related health conditions. Numerous studies have found that a predominantly plant-based diet that includes foods such as avocados can help to decrease the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and overall mortality while promoting a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy, and overall lower weight.

1. Avocados are nutrient rich

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, one serving (one-fifth of an avocado, approximately 40 grams) contains:

  • 64 calories
  • Almost 6 grams of fat
  • 3.4 grams of carbohydrate
  • Less than a gram of sugar
  • Almost 3 grams of fiber

Avocados are a great source of vitamins C, E, K, and B-6, as well as riboflavin, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, magnesium, and potassium. They also provide lutein, beta-carotene, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Although most of the calories in an avocado come from fat, don't shy away! Avocados are full of healthy, beneficial fats that help to keep you full and satiated. When you consume fat, your brain receives a signal to turn off your appetite. Eating fat slows the breakdown of carbohydrates, which helps to keep sugar levels in the blood stable.

Fat is essential for every single cell in the body. Eating healthy fats supports skin health, enhances the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients, and may even help boost the immune system.

2. Healthy for the heart

Avocados contain 25 milligrams per ounce of a natural plant sterol called beta-sitosterol. Regular consumption of beta-sitosterol and other plant sterols has been seen to help maintain healthy cholesterol levels.

3. Great for vision

Avocados contain lutein and zeaxanthin, two phytochemicals that are especially concentrated in the tissues in the eyes where they provide antioxidant protection to help minimize damage, including from ultraviolet light.

As the monounsaturated fatty acids in avocados also support the absorption of other beneficial fat-soluble antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, adding avocados to your diet may help to reduce the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration.

4. Osteoporosis prevention

Half of an avocado provides approximately 25 percent of the daily recommended intake of vitamin K.

This nutrient is often overlooked, but is essential for bone health.

Vitamin K is often overshadowed by calcium and vitamin D when thinking of nutrients important for maintaining healthy bones, however, eating a diet with adequate vitamin K can support bone health by increasing calcium absorption and reducing urinary excretion of calcium.

5. Cancer

Adequate intake of folate from food has shown promise in protecting against colon, stomach, pancreatic, and cervical cancers.

Although the mechanism behind this apparent reduction in risk is currently unknown, researchers believe that folate protects against undesirable mutations in DNA and RNA during cell division.

Avocados may even have a role to play in cancer treatment, with some research finding that phytochemicals extracted from avocado can selectively inhibit the growth of precancerous and cancerous cells and cause the death of cancer cells, while encouraging the proliferation of immune system cells called lymphocytes.

These phytochemicals have also been shown to decrease chromosomal damage caused by cyclophosphamide, a chemotherapy drug.

6. Healthy babies

Folate is extremely important for a healthy pregnancy.

Adequate intake reduces the risk of miscarriage and neural tube defects.

Recent research from McGill University found a 30 percent higher incidence of a variety of birth defects in baby mice conceived using sperm from mice with a folate deficiency compared with mice conceived using sperm from mice with adequate folate levels.

7. Lower risk of depression

Foods containing high levels of folate may help to decrease the risk of depression because folate helps to prevent the build-up of homocysteine, a substance that can impair circulation and delivery of nutrients to the brain.

Excess homocysteine can also interfere with the production of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, which regulate mood, sleep, and appetite.

8. Improved digestion

Despite its creamy texture, an avocado is actually high in fiber with approximately 6-7 grams per half fruit.

Eating foods with natural fiber can help prevent constipation, maintain a healthy digestive tract, and lower the risk of colon cancer.

9. Natural detoxification

Adequate fiber promotes regular bowel movements, which are crucial for the daily excretion of toxins through the bile and stool.

Recent studies have shown that dietary fiber may also play a role in regulating the immune system and inflammation.

10. Osteoporosis treatment

Substances called saponins, found in avocados, soy and some other plant foods, are associated with relief of symptoms in knee osteoarthritis, with further research planned to determine the long-term effects of isolated extracts.

11. Antimicrobial action

Avocados contain substances that have antimicrobial activity, particularly against Escherichia coli, a leading cause of food poisoning.

12. Protection from chronic disease

According to the Department of Internal Medicine and Nutritional Sciences Program of the University of Kentucky, high fiber intakes are associated with significantly lower risks of developing coronary heart disease, stroke, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and certain gastrointestinal diseases. Increased fiber intake has also been shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, improve insulin sensitivity, and enhance weight loss for obese individuals.

Saturday, 14 April 2018

Kiwi Slush

  • 2 cups crushed ice
  • 4 tbsp sugar syrup
  • 8 tbsp kiwi crush
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 bottles of chilled soda (300 ml)

For The Garnish:
  • 2-4 kiwi slices

  1. In a glass put ½ cup of crushed ice.
  2. Pour 1 tbsp of sugar syrup, 2 tbsp of kiwi crush, 1 tbsp lemon juice over it and stir using a stirrer.
  3. Repeat the steps 1 and 2 make 3 more glasses.
  4. Top each glass with ½ bottle of chilled soda and serve immediately garnish with a slice of kiwi.

Saturday, 7 April 2018

Easy Jackfruit Curry

  • 1 tsp oil
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp nigella seeds
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 dried red chilies
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 1 inch ginger chopped
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 2 medium tomatoes pureed
  • ½ kg Jackfruit
  • ½ to ¾ tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 to 1.5 cups water
  1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. When hot, add cumin, mustard and nigella seeds and let them start to sizzle or pop. 1 minute. Add bay leaves and red chilies and cook for a few seconds. Add in the onion, garlic and ginger and a pinch of salt. Cook until translucent. 5-6 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  2. Add coriander, turmeric, black pepper and mix well. Add pureed tomato, salt and Jackfruit. Mix. Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
  3. Uncover and cook for a few minutes to thicken the tomato puree. Also, shred the Jackfruit a bit if you like.
  4. Add water, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Taste and adjust salt and spice. Reduce heat to medium low and cover and cook for another 10 minutes or longer until desired consistency. 
  5. Garnish with cilantro and serve.


Variation: You can also make this curry with cooked beans or chickpeas, or use shredded squash like butternut or use vegan chicken subs.

To Make In A Pressure Cooker:

Follow steps 1 and 2 on sauté mode in IP or Pressure cooker. Add tomato puree and cook for 2 minutes, then add jackfruit, salt and water. Close the lid and pressure cook for 7 to 8 minutes once the cooker comes to pressure (manual 8 minutes on IP). Wait for the pressure to release natural release. Shred the cooked jackfruit with a spatula if you wish and serve.

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Iceberg Lettuce, Paneer And Corn Burger

Ingredients (For The Patty):

  • 1/2 cup crumbled (cottage cheese)
  • 1/2 cup boiled and coarsely crushed sweet corn kernels (makai ke dane)
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander (dhania)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp finely chopped green chillies
  • 2 tbsp bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup plain flour (maida) dissolved in 3/4 cup water
  • bread crumbs for rolling

Ingredients For The Burger

  • 2 burger buns
  • Butter (for brushing)
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 iceberg lettuce
  • 4 tomato slices
  • 4 onion slices
  • salt and freshly ground black peppercorns

Method For The Patty:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
  2. Divide the mixture into 2 equal portions and shape each portion into a 75 mm. (3”) diameter round.
  3. Dip each patty in the maida (all purpose flour) and water mixture, and roll in the bread crumbs till they are evenly coated from all the sides.
  4. Heat the oil in a kadhai and deep-fry each patty till it turns golden brown in colour from both the sides. Drain on absorbent paper and keep aside.

  1. Cut each burger bun horizontally into two. Apply butter on both the sides of each half of the burger bun and toast them lightly on a tava (griddle) and keep aside.
  2. Place the lower half of the bun on a clean, dry surface and apply ½ tbsp of mayonnaise on each bun halves.
  3. Place an iceberg lettuce, 1 patty, 2 tomato slices and 2 onion slices and sprinkle a little salt and pepper over it.
  4. Cover with an upper half of the bun and press it lightly.
  5. Repeat steps 3 to5 to make 1 more burger.
  6. Serve immediately with French fries.