Avocado changes the distribution of abdominal fat in women

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One avocado a day could help redistribute abdominal fat in women to a healthier profile, according to a new study. One hundred and five adults with overweight and obesity participated in a randomized controlled trial that provided one meal a day for 12 weeks. Women who ate avocados as part of their daily meal had a reduction in deeper visceral abdominal fat.

Coordinated by Naiman Khan, a professor of kinesiology and community health in Illinois, the researchers published their study in the Journal of Nutrition.

“The goal was not so much to lose weight, as we were interested in understanding what avocado consumption does regarding the storage of body fat. The location of fats in the body plays an important role in the general state of health “, considers Khan.

“There are two types of fat in the abdomen: fat that accumulates just under the skin, called subcutaneous fat, and fat that accumulates deeper in the abdomen, known as visceral fat, which surrounds the internal organs. People with a higher proportion of visceral fat tend to have a higher risk of developing diabetes. So we were interested in determining whether the ratio of subcutaneous fat to visceral fat changed with avocado consumption, ”he said.

Participants were divided into two groups. One group received meals that included fresh avocado, while the other group received a meal that had almost identical ingredients and similar calories, but no avocado. At the beginning and end of the 12 weeks, the researchers measured participants’ abdominal fat and glucose tolerance, a measure of metabolism and a marker of diabetes.

Female participants who ate one avocado a day as part of the meal experienced a reduction in visceral abdominal fat – a high-risk fat associated with higher risk – and experienced a reduction in the ratio of visceral fat to subcutaneous fat, indicating a redistribution of fat away from the organs. However, the distribution of fat in men has not changed. No improvement in glucose tolerance has been observed in either men or women.

“While daily consumption of avocado has not changed glucose tolerance, what we have learned is that a dietary pattern that includes an avocado every day has influenced the way individuals store body fat in a way that is beneficial to their health, but the benefits were primarily for women,” says Khan. “It is important to show that dietary interventions can modulate the distribution of fat. Finding out that the benefits were obvious only to women tells us something about the role of sex in responses to dietary intervention. ”

The researchers said they hope to conduct a follow-up study that will provide participants with all the daily meals and analyze additional markers of intestinal and physical health to get a more complete picture of the metabolic effects of avocado consumption and to determine whether the difference remains between the two sexes.

“Our research not only sheds valuable light on the benefits of daily avocado consumption on the different types of fat distribution between the sexes, but also provides a basis for further work and understanding of the avocado’s full impact on body fat and health.” , said study co-author Richard Mackenzie, a professor of human metabolism at Roehampton University in London.

“By continuing our research, we will get a clearer picture of the types of people who would benefit most from incorporating avocados into their diets and providing valuable data for health counselors to provide patients with guidance on how to reduce of fat deposits and the potential dangers of diabetes,” Mackenzie concluded.

Want to know other benefits of avocado and other foods in your personal diet? We recommend the free Dahna app, created by cardiologists and nutritionists, which you can download from the App Store  or  Google Play .

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