Can I grow avocado in the climate of Kerala

avocado

The avocado fruit comes from the southern part of central Mexico. From an economic point of view, the avocado is an important food that is grown in the tropical and Mediterranean climates.

Due to its high content of simple unsaturated fatty acids, the avocado is an important staple food for people who otherwise have limited access to high quality food - e.g. B. fatty meat and fish or dairy products (or for people who have to do without these products for health reasons).

Below you will find all the nutrients in the avocado, the importance it has for health, what you should pay attention to when buying or preparing it and all other important information on the subject.

Table of Contents

Interesting facts about avocados

What you should know about the avocado

From a botanical point of view, the avocado is a berry. The flesh of the ripe fruit is usually green in color and high in fat; the shape of the fruit can be pear-shaped, oval or spherical. The fruits that can be bought in stores are usually harvested unripe and ripen after the harvest.

Thus, the avocado is a typical representative of the group of post-ripening fruits together with pineapples, apples, apricots, avocados, bananas, pears, kiwis, mangoes, nectarines, papayas, peaches, plums, plums and tomatoes. The name of the fruit comes from the Nahuatl word ahuacatl, which means testicle.

One of the largest producers of avocados today is Mexico. Some of the largest growing areas in the world are located near the city of Uruapan. The avocado tree, which is up to 20 meters high, is one of the evergreen plants. In addition, the plant has the rare property of self-pollination. It usually takes four years from cultivation to harvest - from then on the young plants are sexually mature.


Varieties & types

There are a total of three different types of avocado trees: the Mexican, the Guatemalan and the West Indian varieties. Of these, the Mexican variety is the most robust, the least sensitive to cold and the closest to the original variety.

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Although there are over 400 different cultivars of the avocado fruit, four of them are most commonly available in European stores:

  • Fuerte - pear-shaped with smooth, light green skin.
  • Ettinger - also pear-shaped, but less pointed than the Fuerte variety, but rather evenly wide. Also light green.
  • hate - a small variety that can be pear-shaped or oval, the skin of the ripe fruit is leathery and brown to black.
  • Nabal - rather spherical fruits, the skin is leathery and dark green or brown.

The fruits of the Fuerte variety weigh on average between 200 and 450 grams, the smaller Hass varies between 150 and 400 grams. Furthermore, seedless variations of the Fuerte variety are available, which arise from the unfertilized flowers of this tree variety.

Real giants can be found among the fruits of the Choquette or Pollock varieties - avocados of these varieties weigh up to 3 kilograms.


Importance to health

The vitamin A contained in the avocado is involved in the visual process as well as in bone formation, tooth preservation and blood formation. The green-colored fruit is also suitable for people who suffer from neurodermatitis due to the substances it contains, linoleic and linoleum.

Particularly noteworthy is the lutein content of the avocado fruit. This also has a very positive healing effect on the eyesight and also has a preventive effect with regard to various diseases of the eyes. In combination with food rich in vitamins, the high fat content of the avocado ensures that the fat-soluble vitamins can also be absorbed.

Together with cherries, the avocado is one of the natural sources of salicylic acid and can therefore replace the aspirin tablet in the event of a headache - 100 grams of avocado contain 0.6 milligrams of the valuable active ingredient.

A 2013 study by the United States' National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) shows that more frequent avocado consumption correlates with better blood counts and a lower risk of developing metabolic syndrome. High consumption of avocado lowers cholesterol levels. Specifically, in the study, consuming large amounts of avocados for a week led to a 17% reduction in cholesterol levels.

Despite the high fat content, the health-promoting properties of the avocado predominate and it is therefore also ideal for diets that are designed with the aim of weight reduction. In any case, it is advisable to replace the amount of fats of animal origin or highly refined fats such as margarine with natural fatty acid suppliers.


Ingredients & nutritional values

100 grams of avocado contain average to high concentrations of B and K vitamins, vitamins C and E and iron. Other ingredients that are of great importance for health are phytosterols and carotenoids.

About three-quarters of the calorie content of an avocado is made up of fats, with two-thirds of those fats being simple unsaturated fats. The green colored fruit also contains palmitic and linoleic acid. Only about 14% of the fats it contains belong to the group of saturated fats.

The typical fat composition is divided into the following groups:

  • 1% Omega-3 acids
  • 14% Omega-6 acids
  • 71% Omega-9 acids (of which 65% oleic acid)
  • 14% saturated fatty acids (palmitic acid)

In addition, the avocado fruit contains significant amounts of folic acid, magnesium and copper.


Intolerance & allergy

The avocado rarely triggers allergic reactions, although these generally occur as cross-reactions, i.e. people allergic to pollen (keyword: birch) or people allergic to latex can develop allergic symptoms when consuming avocados, as the fruit contains components that are similar to the problematic allergens.

In addition, the cross-reaction can be more pronounced if the fruit is consumed during the pollen season. Violent cross-reactions are rare, but life-threatening reactions, especially in latex allergy sufferers, cannot be ruled out.

A direct intolerance is also expressed in people with a histamine allergy. Digestive problems can also occur in people who have to avoid fatty foods for health reasons.


Shopping & kitchen tips

In general, it is advisable to buy solid fruits that you can ripen at home. In the case of already ripened fruits, it cannot be ruled out that they contain brown spots that are already inedible or even mold due to too long storage.

The avocado ripens best at room temperature, but not in the immediate vicinity of the heater. Basically, you should not keep tropical fruits or fruits that are grown and harvested in warm areas in the refrigerator. This often leads to a loss of taste and consistency.

On average, an avocado takes five days to ripen. Slicing the fruit breaks off this process, a cut fruit can no longer ripen.

You can accelerate the ripening of the unripe fruit by storing the avocado together with bananas, tomatoes or apples, for example in an airtight container. These types of fruit give off ethylene, which in turn is absorbed by the avocado and shortens their ripening time by several days.

It is best to cut the avocado lengthways. If it is already ripe, the pulp can easily be removed from the core. Tip: turn both halves in opposite directions after slicing.

If you want to keep a halved avocado longer in the refrigerator to extend the shelf life, it is advisable to leave the stone in the fruit, as this ensures longer-lasting freshness.


Preparation tips

A ripe avocado yields when you apply slight pressure. The pulp quickly turns brown due to enzyme activity if it comes into contact with the air. To prevent this, you can treat the avocado with lemon or lime juice. The fruit, although not sweet, has a distinctive and subtle taste and a creamy texture. It is used in both sweet and savory dishes.

Especially in vegetarian cuisine, the avocado is very often used as a meat substitute in salads and sandwiches due to its high fat content. Although it is relatively heat-resistant, avocado oil is relatively expensive compared to other vegetable oils and is therefore preferred in cold dishes, for example in salads or dips.

The avocado is usually eaten raw, although some varieties such as “Hass” can be heated briefly without becoming bitter. However, you should be careful when heating unknown varieties, as this can quickly make the pulp inedible. Prolonged heating is generally unfavorable for all types of avocado.

The avocado is used as a base for the Mexican dip guacamole, as well as a spread for corn tortillas or toast in combination with spices.

In the Philippines, Brazil, Indonesia, Vietnam and southern India, especially on the coast of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Kamataka, avocados are often used in milkshakes and occasionally as an accompaniment to ice cream and other desserts. In Brazil, Vietnam, the Philippines and Indonesia, avocado is pureed as a dessert, mixed with sugar, milk and water, and occasionally with chocolate syrup. While in Morocco a similar mixture is still served with the addition of orange blossom water.

In Ethiopia, the avocado is also part of a colorful drink that consists of layers of different fruit juices, in addition to avocado puree, mango, banana, guava and papaya juice. In Mexico and Central America, avocado is served with cooked white rice, in soups and salads, or as an addition to chicken or meat.


Answer questions

Frequent questions and answers about the avocado

Below are answers to the most common questions about avocados.

Is there any other important point to note about avocado usage?

All avocado components, i.e. fruit, peel, stone, tree leaves, etc., can be poisonous for pets and farm animals. These include dogs, cats, horses, rodents, rabbits, fish and bird species, cattle, goats and sheep. This is due to the ingredient Persin. Poisoning can quickly have fatal consequences, especially with smaller pets. Unfortunately, poisoning that has already occurred cannot be treated.

Since when has the avocado been part of the human diet?

The oldest evidence of the use of avocado was found in a hell in central Mexico and dates back to 10,000 BC. The earliest written evidence of the use of avocado in Europe dates back to 1519 in a book by Martin Fernandez Enciso. Avocado cultivation areas in Europe have only existed since the beginning of the 20th century.


Our conclusion on the avocado

The avocado is a valuable food with diverse health-promoting properties and a long cultural-historical use in non-European cuisine and medicine. In addition to cold-pressed vegetable oils and fats, the consumption of avocado is an important source of healthy fatty acids and a welcome change not only for vegetarians, but for everyone who values ​​a healthy diet.
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