The diet has been tested on a group of 45 people who were overweight or obese, and who were also given a low-fat diet—but without avocado—to see if that worked any better on their cholesterol levels.
But, after five weeks, it was the avocado that made the biggest impact on LDL cholesterol, and had caused levels to drop significantly, say researchers from Penn State University.
The fruit seemed to target LDL particles that had become oxidized—or exposed to oxygen—and these are the ones that cause the build-up of plaque in the arteries, the researchers say. Oxidation is a biological process that's been associated both with heart disease and cancer.
As well as keeping cholesterol in check, avocados are full of healthy fats such as carotenoids that are also good for eye health.