Eating avocado has a surprising effect on belly fat, but only in women

A newly published study reveals that avocado may be more than a tasty treat on a slice of toast. The researchers found that eating an avocado every day triggered a redistribution in belly fat that reduced one's risk of certain metabolic diseases like type-2 diabetes. The catch? The beneficial changes were only observed in the female participants.

The study, which comes from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, involved 105 overweight and obese adults who were assigned to two groups. One group of participants were given meals that included an avocado for dinner; the other group was given a very similar meal, but without the avocado.

The participants consumed their respective dinners for 12 weeks, after which point the researchers compared their abdominal fat distribution with the measurements taken before the specific diet was started. Though the non-avocado group hadn't experienced any changes, the group given an avocado daily for dinner experienced beneficial belly fat redistribution.

The change, which involved the ratio of visceral fat versus subcutaneous fat shifting in favor of subcutaneous fat, was only observed in the female participants. Males who participated in the study didn't experience the same reduction in visceral fat, which accumulates around organs and is associated with big increases in various disease risks.

The daily avocado didn't have an impact on glucose tolerance in any of the participants, however. Regardless, the findings show that avocado may be a simple way for people to reduce the risks associated with visceral fat, particularly women.