A study published earlier this year found a compound hidden in the seed of avocados, a part often tossed away by avocado-loving, health conscious people, that may hold to key to treat a relatively rare and deadly form of leukemia, acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
Did you know that you can actually eat the avocado seed and take the full benefits of its power, instead of tossing them into the bin? Read on and I’ll share with you how to do this. But first, let’s talk about these new findings.
What is Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)
AML is a type of cancer that affects the bone marrow. It is characterized by the rapid growth of abnormal white blood cells that accumulate in the bone marrow and interfere with the production of normal blood cells.
Normal bone marrow is being replaced with leukemic cells, which cause a reduction in red blood cells, platelets, and normal white blood cells. AML is a very aggressive form of leukemia which progresses at a rapid pass and is usually fatal within weeks or months if left untreated
FYI: AML is also known as acute myelogenous leukemia or acute nonlymphocytic leukemia (ANLL).
Avocado Seed and AML
Researchers from the University of Waterloo and Mount Sinai Hospital in Canada and the University of Perugia in Italy, identified a compound, hidden deep within the pit of an avocado, called avocatin B.
They tested a whole myriad of naturally occurring compounds and they found avocatin B to be extremely effective against AML cancer cells. It was able to kill AML cancer cells without any effect on healthy, normal functioning blood cells. Something which cannot be said of the standard chemotherapy treatments.
While there is still a long way to go, the results look very promising. This new discovery may overtime lead to the development of new treatments that could replace harmful and sick making chemotherapy or stem cells transplants.
How to Eat Avocado Seeds
While these finding are quite impressive, it’s not the only way avocado pits can improve health and wellness.
They are packed with antioxidants, fiber, potassium, and healthy fats. In South America it has been used to treat dysentery and digestive issues such as inflammation, gastric ulcers, and constipation. They are good for your heart and strengthen the immune system, too.
The best way to use avocado pits is by grinding them into powder and then add it to smoothies, sauces, or dressing. The orange powder you are left with is quite bitter to the taste, so make sure to add enough strong tasting ingredients to mask the flavor.
To avoid ruining your blender or food processor, especially if it’s not a high speed blender or powerful food processor, dry the seed and add it to a plastic bag and crush with a hammer first before blending it.
Next time you are eating an avocado, think again before tossing the seed into the bin.
Image Credits: Flickr