You may be familiar with the latest food trend among the uber health-minded: eating avocado pit. What benefit does eating the avocado pit have on your health? What are the possible detriments, and is it a safe practice? Let's look into the studies that have sought to answer these questions.

History Behind the Pit

Das Dazugeben von aus dem Avocadokern hergestelltem Pulver zum Essen entstammt einer langen kulturellen Tradition. Der Kern und die Schale von Avocados findet in Südamerika, wo die Avocado ursprünglich herkommt und wo sie in großer Zahl wächst, seit Jahrhunderten Anwendung. Dort wird der Avocadokern zur Behandlung von Verdauungsproblemen wie Ruhr und Magengeschwüren sowie von Bluthochdruck, Entzündungen und Diabetes verwendet.

Today, avocado pits and skins are readily used in dermatological products. The use of soaps containing avocado pit has even been found by researchers at Pennsylvania State University to have therapeutic effects for those with osteoarthritis.

Forschung

Auch wenn die Forschung zum Avocadokern noch in den Anfängen steckt, so sind die bisherigen Erkenntnisse äußerst interessant. In vielen Haushalten und Verarbeitungszentren landen der Avocadokern und die Schale einfach im Abfall. Dabei stecken in ihnen ironischerweise mehr bioaktive Substanzen wie Polyphenole und andere Antioxidantien als im Fruchtfleisch der Avocado selbst, berichtet die Zeitschrift Antioxidants. Neben Ballaststoffen, Magnesium, Kalzium und Kalium sind es genau diese im Kern enthaltenen Substanzen, die sich positiv auf das Herz-Kreislauf-System auswirken. Es wurde außerdem herausgefunden, dass der Avocadokern bei hohen Cholesterinwerten, Bluthochdruck und Entzündungskrankheiten wie Diabetes helfen könnte. Darüber hinaus soll der Kern insektenvernichtende, antimykotische und antimikrobielle Eigenschaften besitzen.

The polyphenols found in avocado pits and skins have also been found to have intense free radical-fighting power. Free radicals are highly reactive molecules within the body that are responsible for illnesses, including Alzheimer's disease and cancer. Therefore, the consumption of the pits and skins could help to potentially prevent diseases, such as asthma, arthritis, and other conditions caused by inflammation.

Other Applications

The International Journal of Biological Macromolecules outlines other possible functional applications of the avocado pit. This study found that the starch from the avocado pit has potential as an alternative starch source in food products, acting as a binding and thickening agent. The article also deduced that this starch could have future applications as an active ingredient in pharmaceuticals and as a potential component to biodegradable food packaging products.

Das endgültige Urteil

So what's the verdict on the avocado pit? Should you be eating it? Although you can see many potential benefits, the studies currently available regarding the avocado pit have one thing in common: More evidence is needed to deem them safe for human consumption. Because of that, eating the avocado pit is not recommended at this time, even by the California Avocado Commission, surprisingly enough.

Wonderful ways to safely enjoy the healthy benefits of this interesting pit is through homemade or store-bought skin and body products. The skins and pits can also be used to make all natural clothing dye and you can even use your leftover pit to start growing an avocado plant. Maybe, in time, it'll be verified as safe to use them in recipes at home, but for now the best practice is to abstain.