What to Do About Old Age Aches and Pains: Avocado Pits

by Chris Centeno, MD /

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I have what I call my “old age aches and pains” prevention strategy. Basically, it’s a regimen of supplements that allows me to combat the dangerous inflammation that begins to invade all of our bodies as we reach our 40s and 50s and beyond. Recently I inadvertently added a new and powerful antiaging weapon to my old age prevention arsenal—an avocado pit.

You’re likely saying to yourself, “I like a good avocado like the next guy, and I love a good guacamole, but is an avocado pit even edible?” It turns out that not only are they edible, they’re actually really good for you. In fact, that little one pit a day has seemingly solved my old age aches and pains problem.

What’s the Deal with Avocado Pits?

Up until recently, our biggest concern with the avocado pit has been how to remove it from the flesh of the avocado and discard it. But is it time to stop chucking the pit into the trash can and to start taking advantage of its nutrient-dense properties? Turns out avocado pits are loaded with antioxidants (e.g., polyphenols, catechins, and flavonols), which are significantly more abundant in the pit than in the flesh itself. In addition, the pit also has loads of soluble fiber.

My Old Age Aches and Pains Vanish by Adding the Pit!

Regrettably, I have some really bad genes. On both sides of the family, adult-onset (type 2) diabetes is more the rule than the exception. Now that I’m in my 50s, I’ve decided that I need a stricter diet to avoid this fate. Why? As a physician I know that an adult with type 2 diabetes has a dramatically increased risk of sudden-death heart attack, heart disease, stroke, arthritis, and a shortened activity span. In fact, if there’s one thing you can do that will increase your chances of being a very active 80-year-old (and not dying from a heart attack before then), it’s avoiding diabetes at all costs.

To help accomplish the goal of beating my genetically coded, diabetic fate, I have begun to substitute a vegan shake for breakfast and/or dinner, which stabilizes my blood sugar nicely. I always add avocado to that shake, more to make it smooth and creamy but also because it’s a healthy fat. About two months ago, I accidentally let the pit fall into the blender, which I decided to just blend in rather than trying to fish it out. About the same time, I had noticed that my normal regimen of supplements, diet, and exercise was no longer keeping up with my aging body. However, that day, going up and down the stairs in our office was a bit easier. So the next day I threw the pit in again (this time on purpose) and got the same result.

Could the pit be that good? I searched the Internet and there was a bunch of health news on the benefits of the pit, so I continued and even noticed when I skipped the pit, my old age aches began to return a bit. Over the last few months, I have begun to swear by my daily avocado pit. Is there any research on this? .

What Does My Review of the Avocado Pit Science Say?

I ran some searches in the US Library of Medicine, and this is what I found about what we know about what makes up the pit:

Eating a phytonutrient-rich food (like an avocado) doesn’t increase nasty oxidative stress on your cells, but the same number of calories coming from ice cream or sugar does. Avocado can even get rid of the proinflammatory effects of eating a hamburger! Avocado can also reduce inflammation in skin cells and can help repair UV damage.

ASUs to the Rescue

One of the things in avocado (and soy) that we’ve known about for awhile is unsaponifiables (ASUs), which act as a potent anti-inflammatory. ASUs have been shown in vitro to reduce inflammation and protect cartilage cells. More importantly, a large 2014 randomized controlled trial published in the British Medical Journal showed that ASUs were able to reduce the progression of hip arthritis in real patients. This is a nice review article on the topic.

My New Old Age Aches and Pains Regimen

So now my anti-ache game plan includes the following:

The upshot? Who knew an avocado pit could pack so much punch? I guess it makes sense, given that the seed is usually the part of the fruit or vegetable that nature considers the most important. In the meantime, you may want to consider adding in an avocado pit to your daily regimen. You can throw it into a shake or I’ve heard of people grating it and then adding it in to a salad. While it’s not the best taste known to man, the health benefits may outweigh the knowledge that you’re eating that big old, slimy thing that usually gets thrown away!

Category: Diet/Nutrition

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26 thoughts on “What to Do About Old Age Aches and Pains: Avocado Pits

  1. Phillip Zinni

    What brand blender? Vita-Mix? Has to be strong/tough as pits ard hard.
    Bless you for the post!

    1. Regenexx Team

      Phillip,
      Yes! Vita-mix…they’re amazing!

    2. Chris Centeno Post author

      Phillip, good to hear from you. Yes, I have a Vitamix. We’ve had it for 15 years and it’s a workhorse that will liquefy pretty much anything. They’re pricey, but I think this one will last another 15 years!

  2. Phillip Zinni

    Yikes, fat fingers on small keyboard w/o spellchecker, “are” .

  3. Diana

    Please post the type of blender

    1. Regenexx Team

      Diana,
      It’s a Vita-mix!

  4. David Davenport

    Is Co Q-10 part of the regimen?

    1. Regenexx Team

      David,
      Co Q-10 doesn’t happen to be part of Dr. Centeno’s regime.

  5. Sandra

    I think I have the vita mix- have not really used it but a de times. I can’t believe it could break up an abaca do out… But if Dr. Cr re I says it will work – I’m going to give it a try! but once you grind the pit what do we do???dies it need chewing or mixing it with other stuff??,? Thanks,can’t wait to try it!

  6. Sandra

    I will be trying this tomorrow!!! Thanks for this discovery.. We have been throwing out these pits!!! How should we eat this? Are we adding in the whole avocado?

    1. Regenexx Team

      Sandra,
      There are many different things you can do. The avocado itself gives a smoothie made in a Vitamix body and a smoother texture. The pit gave body to it and really resulted n staying full longer. A whole avocado and a whole pit would probably be alot for most, so perhaps starting with a half of each would be a better plan. The pit itself bitter, so strong flavors work well with it like cherries, raspberries, unsweetened dark chocolate, etc. Experiment!

  7. C Bradley

    There’s no genetic predisposition for Type 2 diabetes – it’s your diet. Switching to a plant based diet rapidly reverses and cures type 2 diabetes – in as little as 2 days. The bottom line is that diets run in families and so they suffer from the same chronic illness. Body wide inflammation is caused by consumption of animal products in a matter of hours – not weeks or months. http://nutritionfacts.org/video/plant-based-diets-and-diabetes/

    My wife had chronic arthritis and was on all kinds of medication to “treat” but not cure it. The doctors told her she would need to be on medication for the rest of her life. She switched to a plant based diet and the arthritis disappeared completely.

    1. Regenexx Team

      C Bradley,
      Very happy your wife’s change in diet helped her. There is however a genetic predisposition to Diabetes (and many other things) which can be expressed or not expressed based on environmental factors like diet. lt’s the old nature vs nurture issue. lf you have the nature, best to avoid the nuture…

  8. E F

    Oh man, I second what C Bradley said. Bravo! Genetics will affect 10-15% of your health. That’s it. The fortunate ending to all of this is that WE have control over our fates, not our ancestors.

    Thank you for the post, very interesting about the avocado pit (plant-based… hmm… why am I not surprised the body reacts to it in a super positive way?).

  9. Janice

    I first ground my pit, from a really overripe avocado,. in a coffee grinder and put it in everything.

    1. Regenexx Team

      Janice,
      Sounds like a plan!

  10. kay williams

    Does the avocado pit powder work just as well?

    1. Regenexx Team

      Kay,
      Have not looked into that. But using the pit from the avocado being used gives certainty about what’s being added to the Smoothie! If you were to use a commercially available dried avocado pit powder I would make sure it was from a company that you were familiar with and have found to be reliable.

  11. sasha

    I tried it in coffee grinder and was soprised it did not break it but shredded the pit. How much do i need daily? A whole avocado every day is too much.

    1. Regenexx Team

      Sasha,
      Many websites have suggested 1/2 of a pit daily.

  12. Donna

    Does it cause any stomach upset as in a lot of fiber at one time can cause stomach distress. I can’t eat a lot of fiber at one time. Usually 9-11 grams per meal is fine though. I have no idea how much fiber is in an avocado pit. Thanks for your reply and bless you for posting your results! I’m interested I doing what I can for my arthritic thumb! The basal joint is bigger than the other one, and I don’t want it to get so huge it looks deformed. Not to mention the pain of it! I do not eat a SAD diet (standard American diet). I eat mostly healthy and nothing white, sugar or flour or excessive grains……whole or otherwise.

    1. Regenexx Team

      Donna,
      While there doesn’t appear to be data on the amount of fiber in the avocado pit itself, values of 7-12 grams of soluble fiber for the whole avocado have been listed. Apparently, 70% of the nutrient value is in the pit. Whether 70% of the fiber is contained in the pit has not been referenced. Importantly though, if you are someone for whom certain amounts of fiber are problematic, then proceed with caution, and if you want to try avocado pits, try a small amount. Your arthritic thumb can easily be treated non surgically with your own platelets or stem cells: http://www.regenexx.com/hand-basal-joint-cmc-arthritis-treatment/ http://www.regenexx.com/blog/texting-thumb-treatments/

  13. photograffer

    I have a ‘Nutribullet’ blender. It comes with a coffee grinder base to use vs. the usual one. Which (if any) would be appropriate to this avocado pit scenario.

    1. Regenexx Team

      photograffer,
      Having never used a Nutribullet, it wouldn’t be appropriate to say. Though I suspect the trick might be to cut it up into several pieces first…

  14. Ron

    Have been a Centeno Clinic patient for over a year, and at age 76 continue to experience significant progress in my joint health. Today my wife could not believe I recovered an avocado pit from the trash after our lunch to make a ‘Vita-Mix’ cocktail.

    1. Regenexx Team

      Ron,
      Best comment of the week! Loved it!

Chris Centeno, MD

Regenexx Founder

Chris Centeno, MD is a specialist in regenerative medicine and the new field of Interventional Orthopedics. Centeno pioneered orthopedic stem cell procedures in 2005 and is responsible for a large amount of the published research on stem cell use for orthopedic applications.
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