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Avocados help make some of the best low-carb meals, but the recent rise in popularity has caused prices to skyrocket.

North Americans have been lucky enough to be able to enjoy avocados regularly and at an affordable price for years, so much so that we’ve probably been taking avocados for granted. We’ve been enjoying their creamy goodness in guacamole, sliced up on salads, and as a healthy addition to vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free meals without giving much thought to this special fruit (yes, it’s a fruit, despite its rich savory taste).

If you are a fan of avocados, then you know they make for a welcome addition to some of the best low-carb meals. As they become less readily available, we are starting to realize just how special they are. Now we are faced with the effects of the booming global avocado trend, having to share this tasty food with the rest of the world. But before you get too flustered, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of the booming avocado trend.

PROS

Avocados are healthy—full of good oils and fats that we need in our diets. As mentioned before, avocados add rich, buttery texture to some of the best low-carb meals, making them a healthy alternative to meat, cheese, bad fats, and high-carb foods. So, since avocados are great for our health, the rising trend in avocados is good for everyone. This means that more people are making healthier decisions about the foods they eat, reaping the following health benefits of avocados:

  • Heart health—have beta-sitosterol that maintains healthy cholesterol levels;
  • Eye health—lutein and zeaxanthin provide antioxidant protection to eye tissue, reducing damage from UV light;
  • Monounsaturated fatty acids support absorption of antioxidants including beta-carotene;
  • High in vitamin K—good for bone health;
  • High in folate—good for cancer prevention and prenatal health; and,
  • High in fiber—good for digestion, detoxification, reducing inflammation, and regulating the immune system.

Plant-based diets that include avocados are high in essential nutrients and fiber that can decrease the risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, stroke, hypertension, and gastrointestinal diseases.

CONS

The rising popularity of avocados both in North America and the rest of the world has caused a shortage in avocado supplies. Now that larger markets have a taste for these rich green fruits, especially in China and Europe, there is a greater demand on the avocado supply in Mexico and California. This year is also seeing lighter yields for avocado crops. Avocado trees are alternate-bearing crops, meaning that they will have a large yield one year, and a smaller yield the following year. Consequently, with the higher demand and low supply, the prices have skyrocketed. Prices have more than doubled since 2016, and are the highest they have been in the past 19 years. Don’t expect prices to go down until later this year or next year.

Despite the rising price of avocados, the health benefits far outweigh the costs, and it is important to eat a healthy balanced diet. Sure, you might think twice before buying an avocado when they aren’t on sale, but once you remember how tasty and healthy they are, you will realize that they are worth it.