If you’re looking for super-healthy foods, avocados and almonds are some of nature’s highest achievers. Both are rich in antioxidants, heart-healthy fats and disease-fighting fiber. So which is the healthier option? Let’s break it down.
The prize for most economical goes to the avocado. According to the USDA’s National Fruit and Vegetable Retail Report (PDF), avocados run a slim $1.03 each – nothing bank breaking about that. Despite almond prices nearly doubling in the last five years, it pays to shop around. You can find them in bulk ranging anywhere from $2.58 a pound to $7.99.
While the almond is often eaten on its own, raw or toasted, it’s also a component of various dishes. So, too, is the avocado – a versatile, culinary delight that can be sliced, spread like peanut butter or blended into smoothies. The taste test comes down to texture preference: crunchy or creamy. Some people prefer the buttery, rich, nutty-cream texture of the avocado with its slight “green” flavor while others prefer the nutty, satisfying crunch power of almonds.
Nutrition facts on these superfoods are super impressive. Side-by-side comparisons of a 100-gram serving prove that almonds are higher in calories, carbs, fat and protein. A high-fat food that’s good for your health? Seems like an oxymoron, but coming in at a whopping 50.64 grams of fat doesn’t seem so bad when they’re good for your heart. Most of the fat in almonds is monounsaturated fat – a healthier type of fat.
The nutrient-dense avocado delivers 35 percent more potassium than a banana. It’s also rich in fiber, as well as vitamins E, C, B6 and folate. Flexing a third of the calories, (160 vs. 578) about half the carbs (9 g vs. 20 g) a lot less fat (15 g vs. 51 g) but not nearly the protein (2 g vs. 21 g), avocados may inspire you to find more ways to incorporate this premium fruit into your healthful regimen.
Lucky for both the avocado and almond, they have thick skin or shells that can stave off some pesticide build-up. When buying, you can opt for either organic or non-organic.
For everyday consumption with a careful eye on calories, carbs and fat, avocados beat out almonds. However, both are winners for their flavor, texture, nutritional value and culinary versatility.
Said Laurie Ross, Carolinas HealthCare System registered dietitian:
“Both of these superfoods are rich in monounsaturated fat, the kind of fat that could potentially help raise ‘good’ (HDL) cholesterol. If trying to keep an eye on your weight, pay close attention to serving size with both of these calorie-rich foods.”
So, depending on your healthy eating or weight-loss goals, feel free to have avocados all the time and almonds once in a while – you’ll be the winner no matter how you slice and dice it.