Have a question? Call NOW 541-485-5100 or 800-238-5809

Avocados, Almonds & Blueberries, Oh My!

Two Fruits and a Nut

More people than ever today are recognizing the importance of a whole-food diet for health and longevity. A quick search of trending topics on social media and the internet will reveal the interest in “getting back to” or beginning a diet/lifestyle featuring foods as whole/wholesome, unprocessed, and nutritious as possible. The benefits of these whole foods generally are quick to notice for most people and among the most popular are increased energy, a fitter body, and improved appearance—whether weight loss or hair, skin and nail benefits. In this newsletter we will look at the attributes of three of the most popular and perennial foods: avocado, almond, and blueberry.


Extremely popular lately in health and foodie blogs, but also with a time-honored reputation for healthy benefits, is the funny-looking green fruit, the avocado. Most famous for its fat content, the avocado also possesses a unique nutritional profile in other aspects. The fruit is one of the few food sources of the amino acid glutathione, the “master detoxifier” in the body, and also contains carnitine, an amino acid involved in fat metabolism with profound cardiac benefits, and which is otherwise found in only animal-sourced foods. Avocados contain high amounts of the carotenoid antioxidant lutein, justly famed for its role in preventing macular degeneration and helping to improve vision. The pigment chlorophyll is found in the skin and fruit, lending the green color and assisting with oxygenation of tissues. Both soluble and insoluble fiber are found in the avocado in good amounts, and in the vitamin category, high levels of vitamin E are found, along with vitamin C, most of the B vitamins, and even vitamin D has been detected.

Avocados can be included as a healthy addition to the Mediterranean or Ketogenic/Paleo diet as their fat profile is similar to olive oil. Primarily monounsaturated fatty acids are found. These fats have shown favorable effects on lipoprotein measurements,
endothelieum vasodilation, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome,
antioxidant capacity, and myocardial and cardiovascular mortality. In simpler terms, they help to decrease unhealthy LDL cholesterol levels and help to increase protective HDL, and may maintain healthy blood pressure levels as well. Don’t be afraid of the high calorie content. This is the original health food!

Israeli scientists have discovered that avocados contain compounds which stimulate the growth of collagen, and the unsaponifiable portions of the oil are anti-inflammatory, improving pain in arthritic joints. Genuine Health includes AvoVida® in its Fast Joint+ Care Extra Strength to support healthy cartilage and flexible joints.

Avocado oil topically is a fantastic skin oil, nourishing dry and rough skin. Evergreen carries Heather Loraine Avocado Oil. New to Evergreen from local fave Keys skincare, is Avo Jel, a vegan alternative to petroleum jelly. This is made solely from fresh avocados, whipped by a proprietary process into a jelly. All sorts of skin issues benefit from application of this healing gel. They also make an avocado Zinc Jel with skin-protective and anti-inflammatory zinc oxide.


Botanically classified as a fruit, although considered as a nut for commercial and culinary purposes, the almond is an old, old friend. Thought to have originated in western Asia and North Africa, the almond has been written about in historical texts including the Bible. A major portion of almond’s benefits comes from its high content of monounsaturated fatty acids. In addition to their cholesterol-lowering effects, almonds’ ability to reduce heart disease also is partly due to the antioxidant action of the vitamin E found in the almonds. Magnesium and potassium are found in good amounts in the almond, further helping the heart. Copper and manganese are present as well, and are both involved in the production of the key antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase. Recent research reveals that almond skins contain appreciable levels of antioxidants. Blood tests conducted at Tufts University showed that eating whole almonds with their skins significantly increased both flavonoids and vitamin E in the body. These phytonutrient antioxidants are profoundly anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective, showing that LDL’s resistance to oxidation was enhanced up to 52%.  Sweet almond is oil is a classic skin-care staple, also beneficial as a massage oil and hair conditioner. Heather Loraine’s Sweet Almond Oil comes in two sizes.


Few fruits have had as much research devoted to their benefits as this wildly popular purple berry. The Vaccinium genus includes not only the blueberry, but relatives huckleberry, cranberry, bilberry, and lingonberry. These fruits are found in many different varieties and regions of the world. The list of potential phytonutrients in the blueberry is staggering: flavonoids such as quercetin and myristicin; anthocyanins (responsible for the vibrant color) including delphinidin and cyanidin; stilbenoids including resveratrol—yes, that resveratrol—and pterostilbene. Each of these phytochemicals has reams of research supporting actions and benefits in the body. Aside from these compounds, blueberries contain vitamins C and K, manganese, copper, and fiber. It is the antioxidant compounds which evince the most interest in blueberries. The various antioxidant, anti-inflammatory chemicals present may help support an exhaustive range of conditions and diseases.

• ANTHOCYANINS: The brightly colored pigments may improve night vision, restore visual acuity after glare, and alleviate other eyesight ailments. These compounds also bind to collagen fibers to prevent its breakdown. Aside from skin benefits, this action also protects blood vessels. Conditions such as stroke, atherosclerosis and varicose veins are prevented/improved.

• STILBENOIDS: The most famous chemical here is resveratrol, whose properties scarcely need to be outlined here. (See our Newsletter.) Suffice to say that it is a powerful antioxidant and protector. Blueberries do not contain as much as red wine, but there is another tremendously powerful relative of resveratrol present.

• PTEROSTILBENE: Recent studies have shown that pterostilbene displays many of the same
properties as resveratrol: it not only acts as an anti-inflammatory and
antioxidant, but it also has antidiabetic, cardioprotective,
neuroprotective, and chemopreventive (anti-cancer) properties. Pterostilbene seems to be better absorbed than resveratrol, and is found in high concentrations in blueberries.

Blueberries for Brain & Eye Health

Famously, blueberries have been shown to support cognitive function. In one study involving older adults (with an average age of 76 years),
12 weeks of daily blueberry consumption was enough to improve scores on
two different tests of cognitive function including memory. Evergreen carries a blueberry-based brain formula from Dr. Perlmutter’s line. Dr. Formulated Brain Health Memory & Focus Adults 40+ contains 600 mg of organic wild blueberry fruit as does their Attention & Focus for Kids formula.  Megafood puts organic blueberry in many of their formulas, including their Daily C-Protect Booster Powder. Evergreen’s own Ultimate Eye Formula contains a trademarked blueberry concentrate combined with bilberry (500 mg total). Despite its small size, the blueberry is a powerhouse, and its inclusion in many supplements for health and longevity will not fade anytime soon.