AVOCADO Overview Information
Avocado is a tree. The fruit, a popular food, is a good source of potassium and vitamin D. The fruit, leaves, and seeds are used to make medicine.
Avocado fruit is used to lower cholesterol levels, to increase sexual desire, and to stimulate menstrual flow. Some of the oils in avocado (chemists call these oils the “unsaponifiable fractions”) are used to treat osteoarthritis. The seeds, leaves, and bark are used for dysentery and diarrhea.
Avocado oil is applied directly to the skin to soothe and heal skin and to treat thickening (sclerosis) of the skin, gum infections (pyorrhea), and arthritis. Avocado oil is used in combination with vitamin B12 for a skin condition called psoriasis. The fruit pulp is used topically to promote hair growth and speed wound healing. The seeds, leaves, and bark are used to relieve toothache.
How does it work?
Avocado contains a lot of fiber, and this may explain its ability to lower cholesterol. Avocado also contains chemicals that might repair cartilage in joints damaged by osteoarthritis.
Possibly Effective for:
- Treating osteoarthritis. Taking certain (unsaponifiable fractions) avocado and soybean oils by mouth seems to significantly improve pain and reduce overall disability. These oils seem to be more effective for hip than knee osteoarthritis.
- Reducing total cholesterol and "bad" cholesterol (LDL cholesterol).
- Increasing "good" cholesterol (HDL cholesterol).
- A skin condition called psoriasis. Developing research shows that after 12 weeks of treatment, a specific cream containing avocado oil and vitamin B12 (Regividerm, Regeneratio Pharma AG, Wuppertal, Germany) reduces symptoms of psoriasis as well as a conventional medication called calcipotriol ointment (Psorcutan). The avocado combination cream also causes significantly less irritation than calcipotriol.
- Healing wounds.
- Promoting hair growth.
- Stimulating menstrual flow.
- Other conditions.
AVOCADO Side Effects & Safety
Avocado is safe for most people when the fruit is eaten in food amounts. Avocado also seems to be safe when taken by mouth as a medicine for up to six months or applied to the skin for up to three months. It generally has few side effects, although one person who used a specific avocado oil plus vitamin B12 cream for psoriasis reported mild itching.
Keep in mind that avocado has a lot of calories because of its fat content.
Special Precautions & Warnings:Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of avocado as medicine during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and stick to food amounts.
Latex allergy: People who are sensitive to latex can have an allergic reaction to avocado.
Moderate Interaction Be cautious with this combination
- Warfarin (Coumadin) interacts with AVOCADO
Warfarin (Coumadin) is used to slow blood clotting. Avocado has been reported to decrease the effectiveness of warfarin (Coumadin). Decreasing the effectiveness of warfarin (Coumadin) might increase the risk of clotting. It is unclear why this interaction might occur. Be sure to have your blood checked regularly. The dose of your warfarin (Coumadin) might need to be changed.
The following doses have been studied in scientific research:
- For lowering cholesterol: The dose of avocado used varies, depending on the amount of other fats and calories in the diet.
- For osteoarthritis: 300 mg daily of an specific extract made from the oils that are tightly bound to fibers in avocado and soybeans. These oils are called "unsaponifiables." The extract used for osteoarthritis is made up of one-third avocado and two-thirds soy bean unsaponifiables.