Avocados: 10 Stories & Superstitions You Didn’t Know
From the dangerous and superstitious side of avocados to the official food of the super Bowl here are the most interesting, bizarre and unexpected things about avocados you want to know.
10 The Original!
Avocadoes come from the Americas and the most famous variety is the Hass, a very creamy variety that got its name from a mail man who had a tree in his backyard. It was an unknown subspecies of avocado. Rudolf Hass patented it and sold its cuttings in the 1930s. Now a days, most of the avocadoes you buy at the store come from the descendants of his tree! Unfortunately after many years, the original Hass tree had root rot in 2002 and had to be cut down...
9 Better Than An Apple?!
We are becoming more familiar with diseases that affect a society that does not move much. We spend most of the day sitting down either in front of a computer or the tv. And some of the most popular health risks affecting us include high cholesterol, arthritis, cancer and lots more. According to many new studies form Pennsylvania State University and others, avocadoes are so loaded with healthy immune busting nutrients, fats and fiber, that is linked to many health benefits that could prevent diseases afflicting many. Many people are incorporating avocadoes into their diets by replacing butter and mayonnaise with a creamy avocado. I guess, one avocado a day will keep the dr. away?
8 Shocking Reality!
When you make a salad, you may add, lettuce or spring greens, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and avocadoes and of course salad dressing right? Most of us will think all those are vegetables and that the fruits are the sweet ones like apples, bananas… but the truth is more complicated. According to botanists, avocados, peppers, and cucumbers are actually fruits! Yeah, it very confusing. To add to the head spinning, cinnamon is in the same family as avocadoes! What’s the weirdest fruit you’ve come across in your travels?
7 Around The World
As you can imagine, in many parts of the world avocadoes have different names. In Taiwan it’s called luò lí or “cheese pear” the name made sense there but not in England, the name avocado was changed to “alligator pear” for marketing purposes because supposedly its easier to pronounce and not so exotic… the name change backfired… People thought it was a pear variety and tried to make pies and tarts. Needless to say, avocados got their name back.
6 Keeping It Young Looking
We have made guacamole for a party and as if by magic, the avocados started turning brown after couple of hours. What to do? Here are the best guacamole preservers. Method 1, lots of lime juice on top of the smooth surface of the guac and plastic wrap tightly on top making sure the guac is covered well. Method 2 making a smooth surface, add water on top, about ½ inch. followed by the plastic wrap tightly on top. Before serving, pour off the water and stir the guac. Either one of those methods got great reviews. According to many grandmas, leaving the pit works but I am sorry to tell you… it does not work so well, even with the plastic wrap on top. And how do farmers preserve the avocados? Just leave them in the tree. There is an enzyme that stops them from ripening as long as they are on the tree. What’s the best guacamole recipe you know?
5 The Prehistoric Fruit
Avocados seem like an odd fruit. No bird or animal could digest and carry its large seeds, so how is it supposed to grow in the wild? Well the avocado was intended to be spread by the now extinct mega fauna of several thousand years ago. That is, animals like the giant ground sloth, as long as a truck or the glyptodon, an armadillo the size of a small car. The avocado would have gone extinct as well if not for early human farmers who really liked its creamy and delicious flavor.
4 Its Creamy Goodness
Avocadoes have not only been used form thousands of years as foods but early accounts show avocadoes being used as health products like face masks. There are many variations of them but here is the simplest one if you have acne or dry skin, basically any one. Smash an avocado with a fork and add it to a yogurt. The original without favors added, top it off with honey until you form a paste. Leave it on your face for 10-15 minutes and voila! Soft and smooth skin!. If you only have an avocado, mash it anyway and apply it to the face and hair. You can also find avocado oil, its great for your skin. You can cook with it as well of course!
3 Superstition or Truth?
According to Mexican folklore, and perhaps there is a medical truth not tested by science yet… but do not eat avocadoes when you are very angry, apparently it will mix bad with your system causing you to pass away. But don’t throw the avocado pit to the trash yet. According to the University of Antioquia in Medellin, Colombia, the avocado seed extract and the seed of the Hass variety, helps fight leukemia, making the cancer cells self-destruct! Some people like to cut and dry the seed to sprinkle them on their food or just cut the fresh seed and add it to a smoothie. Boiling it in water makes a tea that others seem to like!
2 Super Bowl of Guacamole!
Super bowl in the US means football and party the first Sunday in february. Regardless of who is playing, the tradition of celebrating is the constant! One of the most commonly found food items is guacamole! About 79 million pounds of avocadoes comes every year from central and south America to supply the demand! But there is an interesting reason why guacamole became the official food of the super bowl. In the 1990s, the avocado industry started campaigning to promote avocadoes in the form of guacamole as a fun party food. Each year, the number of imported avocadoes to the US increases! Avocadoes from Mexico have been running a super bowl add in the last 3 years! If you are worried about buying organic avocadoes due to pesticides, no need, they have one of the lowest pesticide levels!
1 Animal Safety And Warning
Nothing more tempting than to feed a begging animal specially if it looks hungry. Unfortunately, many foods that we like, may be toxic to them. Avocadoes are on the list of no-no foods for your dog, cat, rabbit, bird… basically all pets. If you are going to feed them table food, make sure to ask an expert for advice.
Avocado and its goodness discovered. What other foods you’ll like to explore?