Going to a Super Bowl party this weekend and stumped on what to take that’s both healthy and supports your fertility journey?
The answer is simpler than you might think. Guacamole.
We don’t typically think of guacamole as the hotbed of healthy eating. In Mexican restaurants the guac is probably loaded with preservatives and chemicals. Some recipes include fat-filled sour cream or other not-so-healthy ingredients. And then when they’re eaten with greasy chips we might feel more bloated than satisfied, and like we’ve just eaten a pile of crap.
The truth of the matter is, avocados, the principal ingredient in guacamole, is one of the healthiest foods we can eat. And they’re a fertility superfood. Truly, if you’re trying to conceive, avocados are simply one of the best foods you can eat.
- They’re loaded with folate. You’ve probably heard that when you’re trying to get pregnant, and actually are pregnant, you want to have lots of folic acid in your diet. Folic acid is in the manufactured vitamins; folate is the natural form of the nutrient. Folate can be found in lots of foods like leafy green vegetables, broccoli, and, yes, avocados. Increased folate intake is linked to a reduction in birth defects, including spina bifida and anencephaly. It’s estimated that a diet rich in folate will reduce occurrence of these birth defects by up to 60%.
- They’re also rich in monounsaturated fats. These are the “good” fats, the “healthy” fats. These are the fats you actually want to have in your diet. They help the endocrine system manage the reproductive hormones. Estrogen, for example, is manufactured and stored in fat, so you want to make sure you’re getting fat in your diet, and that it’s the right kind of fat. The kind of fat you can get from things like olive oil, nuts, and, you guessed it, avocados.
- Avocados have also been found to help aid the digestive system. They’re rich in fiber, and are simply one of the best things you can eat for good digestive health. And when you’re trying to conceive, or even if you’re just trying to get healthier, anything that can aid digestion and improve your gut health is a good thing!
How do you know when avoacados are ready to eat? It’s a challenge. Avocados stay hard for so long, and then practically the next day it seems like they’re all mushy and brown and mealy and gross inside. There’s a pretty small window you can eat them. When shopping in the store, get avocados that are ever-so-slightly soft and mostly dark but slightly green (too dark and they’re likely past their prime). After you get them home they’ll probably be ready in a day or two. Keep an eye on them, you want to eat them as soon as they’re ready because the next day they’ll likely be past prime.
So, enjoy that guac – just make sure it’s a guac with all healthy ingredients.
I have just the recipe for you.
I’ve long been a fan of Mexican food, and my guac has been the stuff of legend for years. I didn’t really know this until last year when I was going to a party at my cousin’s, and her husband asked me to bring some of “that kick-ass guac” he’d had at my house before. After that, I realized that I often get asked to bring my guac to parties and events, and I’m making it almost every day on our annual beach vacations, at the request of one family member or another.
It’s kinda funny, too, because my guac isn’t anything special in terms of how I make it. Very few ingredients, very few steps. It’s so easy to make it’s criminal, actually. But it’s oh, so tasty!
So I invite you to kick infertility’s ass with the help of my kick-ass guacamole!
Steph’s Fertility-Ass-Kicking Guacamole
- 3-4 organic avocados
- 1 medium tomato
- 1 small jalapeño pepper
- 1 small onion
- 1 tsp chopped fresh cilantro
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- sea salt to taste
Coarsely chop avocado, place in bowl. Mash with a potato masher or a fork. Get it to your desired consistency, I like mine pretty smooth but with some coarseness. Add diced tomato, diced onion, diced jalapeno (to taste, if you don’t like it too spicy reduce or even omit jalapeño) and cilantro (to taste, cilantro is pretty strong, so how much you use depends on how much of that flavor you want). Stir to combine. Squirt juice of 1/2 lemon and add sea salt to taste. Stir to combine. The more you mash or stir it, the creamier it will be.
Enjoy guac with homemade corn tortillas, chopped veggies or as a spread on sandwiches.
Tip: Store guac in the fridge in an airtight container. To keep it from turning brown store it with the pit from one of the avocados.