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Apart from great taste and texture, there are a good number of reasons to include this fruit in your diet. Although high in monounsaturated fats, and thereby calories, avocados contain high levels of potassium, folate, and vitamins B, E, and K. They are also high in fiber, and have been shown to have a beneficial effect on blood serum levels. Studies have shown that consumption of this fruit can help in the lowering of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, attributed to their high levels of beta-sitosterol. Avocados are also known to protect against various types of cancer.

Citrus Avocado Salsa with Chicken

Ingredients
  • Skinless chicken breasts - 1½ lbs
  • Grapefruit - 1
  • Avocado - 1 cup, diced
  • Radish - 4, thinly sliced
  • Fresh basil
  • Lemon zest - of 1 lemon
  • Salt - to taste
  • Olive oil - for drizzling
Method
  1. Fill a large saucepan with enough water to submerge the chicken breasts, and add a pinch of salt. Place on high heat and bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear once poked with a fork.
  2. While the chicken is cooking, peel the grapefruit and free each segment and cut into bite sized bits, making sure you catch the juice.
  3. Place the freshly cut grapefruit in a bowl, along with the avocado, radish, basil and salt to taste. Add the lemon zest and mix well.
  4. Drain the chicken breast, and cut into 1 inch sized slices.
  5. Place a portion of the salad onto a plate, top with the chicken and drizzle with olive oil. Serve immediately.
Avocado and Chicken Club Sandwich

Ingredients
  • Multi-grain bread - 12 slices
  • Reduced-fat mayonnaise - 4 tbsp
  • Iceberg lettuce - 4oz, finely shredded
  • Cooked chicken breasts, - 4 oz, skin removed, shredded
  • Lean ham - 50 g, cut into strips
  • Fresh ground pepper - to taste
  • Avocado - 1
  • Freshly squeezed lime juice - 1 tbsp
  • Orange - 1, peeled and chopped
  • Watercress - 1 small bunch
Method
  1. Spread the mayonnaise on the slices of bread. Place 4 slices on a chopping board, divide the shredded lettuce amongst the slices, and top with the shredded chicken. Then add the ham. Top with 4 more slices, mayonnaise side down.
  2. Mash the avocado with the lemon juice, then spread on the bread slices. Top with the orange segments and watercress. Top with the final slices of bread, press down gently and cut into quarters.
  3. Serve immediately.
For all you vegetarians out there, here's a healthy avocado recipe in the form of a fabulous salad that can add oodles of flavor to any meal. Combine it with some grilled cottage cheese, and you have a meal ready in minutes. Papaya and mango meld well with the avocado, and the bell peppers give it just enough spiciness to combine with the lemon juice in a flavor explosion that will have your taste buds begging for more.

Papaya, Mango and Avocado Salsa

Ingredients
  • Avocado - 1 cup, diced
  • Mango - 1 ripe, peeled and diced
  • Papaya - 1 small, peeled and diced
  • Sweet red peppers - ¼ cup diced
  • Yellow peppers - ¼ cup, diced
  • Jalapeños - 1 tbsp, chopped
  • Cilantro - 1 tbsp, chopped
  • Lime juice - 1 tbsp
Method
  1. Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl and place in the refrigerator to chill.
  2. Season before serving with salt and fresh black pepper.
Once you know what flavors complement this fabulous fruit, you'll find it easier to incorporate them into your recipes. Pick up a few green ones every time you go to the grocery store, so that you always have a store of ripening avocados in your kitchen.