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What's up, Avocado?

Updated on April 11, 2011

Books about Avocado, etc.

Mysticism of Avocado

It was savored by the Aztec Indians during their golden age; avocados are now a universally adored fruit. In the Philippines, it is one of the staple fruits being vended in the fruit stands. Personally, I am aware of its abundance of the fruit in the market. With teaspoon of sugar or condensed milk, it is a good substitute for regular meal.

The Legendary Avocado

Avocados have been popular for centuries because of its flavor and natural goodness. The milky taste of its greenish flesh is also a good substitute for breastfeeding if the mother of the child lacks milk to feed the infant.

It was an aphrodisiac or sex enhancer to the ancient Aztec civilization of South America. Avocado seeds were found with buried mummies in Peru dated 750 BC. Originally called “ahuacatl” by the Aztecs, changed to Spanish word “aguacate”, and named by the Americans as “alligator pears” due to difficulty of pronunciation.

According to the Spanish historian Ovido, while travelling through Mexico, the taste is “similar to butter and of very good taste” He sent the letter to King Carlos V of Spain describing the distinctive taste of the fruit. European sailors nicknamed it as “midshipman’s butter”. Yes, the oily part of avocado flesh is similar to butter. Modern marketers now refer avocado as “nature’s butter”. I agree.

How to Grow

To date, there are more than 700 varieties of avocado, differentiated by shape, color and skin texture. The most common varieties are Fuerte, Hass and Sharwill.

Avocado is originally a rainforest tree. It is susceptible to a root rot disease. It is planted in a well-drained soils and well-spaced rows to allow maximum sun penetration.

The canopies of avocado trees are pruned. Irrigation, regular fertilizing and regular sunshine aid the avocados’ growth. You can wait from 3 to five years onward to fully utilize the potentials of the trees. An interesting fact of avocado flowers is that they change sex about midday, everyday thereby helping to ensure that pollination really took place.

Harvesting begins in February and continues, with later varieties, until October. It should be handled and packed carefully because avocados are fragile fruits.

Health Benefits

Avocados are law in salt and high in fiber. Nutritionists recommend consuming it fresh rather than a supplement because it has variety of vitamins and minerals. These include antioxidant vitamins A, B6 and C which help prevent heart disease and cancer. It is also rich in folic acid which is especially important in preventing birth defects.

Like all fruits, avocados are cholesterol-free. Their monounsaturated oil content can help lower blood cholesterol.

Storing Avocados

To ripen avocados, store at room temperature with other fruits or put in plastic or paper bags. To store in refrigerator, halve the avocados with the seed intact, sprinkle with lemon juice and cover with plastic wrap to prevent browning.

View Do: How To Make Guacamole


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    • travel_man1971 profile image

      Ireno Alcala 5 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      @Olde Cashmere: Thanks for giving importance on this hub. Avocado is a very historic fruit among Indians and I hope I gave justice to it through this article.

    • profile image

      Olde Cashmere 5 years ago

      I loved this hub and appreciate you going through the rich history of this fruit. I especially enjoyed the video you included and found it highly useful. Thanks for a great article travel_man1971 :)

    • travel_man1971 profile image

      Ireno Alcala 6 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      @daffodil2010: Yes, it's superb! I usually put a sweetened condensed milk along it's slices as dessert this summer.

    • daffodil2010 profile image

      daffodil2010 6 years ago

      it is delicious, we make salad of it. nice hub. thanks for sharing

    • travel_man1971 profile image

      Ireno Alcala 8 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      I'm sure you'll like one of avocado's Mexican recipe, the guacamole.

    • bacville profile image

      bacville 8 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      I am beginning to like avocado. Just put sugar or condensed milk to it and it will be a perfect, nutritious snack.