Study shows avocados help women redistribute belly fat

Avocados are a food that many people enjoy adding and using in various types of recipes. A new controlled study has been conducted by researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign that found eating an avocado each day helped women redistribute belly fat. According to the researchers, the redistributed belly fat can help create a healthier body for women.

The study used 105 adults classified as overweight or obese in a randomized controlled trial that provided one meal per day for 12 weeks. Study results found that women who consumed avocado as part of their daily meals showed a reduction in deeper visceral abdominal fat. Researchers overseeing the study are clear that they weren't seeking to promote weight loss.

Rather, they wanted to understand what eating avocado did to the way participants store body fat. Researcher Naiman Khan says the location of body fat is important to overall health. Two types of abdominal fat accumulate in people, including fat right under the skin, which is subcutaneous fat, and fat that accumulates deeper in the abdomen, known as visceral fat. Visceral fat surrounds internal organs, and people with more visceral fat are more likely to develop diabetes.

The main focus of the study was determining what changes in the types of fat in study participants occurred when eating avocados. The study had participants split into two groups, with one getting meals that included fresh avocado. The other group received meals lacking fresh avocado but having similar ingredients and calorie content.

The study spanned 12 weeks, and abdominal fat and glucose tolerance were measured in participants. Female participants consuming an avocado a day showed a reduction in visceral abdominal fat, indicating a change in fat distribution away from the internal organs. Interestingly, the study found that the distribution in males did not change, and neither male nor female participants showed any changes in glucose tolerance.