Why Açai Bowls And Avo Toast Are Bad For Your Waistline
I’m sorry in advance for all the açai bowl and avo toast lovers, but I need to spread the word on why these delicious brunch options can be sabotaging your weight loss.
First, let’s begin with the açai bowl and the correct pronunciation. The correct way to say this exotic fruit is ah-sah-EE. Ok, now that we have that out of the way, let’s get into the nitty gritty.
Açai berries have plenty of health benefits. These include, but are not limited to:
- High antioxidants profile
- May help improve cholesterol levels
- Great for fibre
- May have an anti-cancer effect
- Could boost brain function
BUT, as with anything in life, it all comes down to balance. While the fibre-rich fruit does have more antioxidant properties than pomegranates and blueberries, many of the ways this fruit is consumed are in the açai bowls, not in its natural form. So what’s wrong with açai bowls?
For anyone who doesn’t know what an açai bowl is, here is a description and a photo (because I'm considerate like that). Açai bowls are made from the açai berry that is pureed and frozen. When the bowl is served, the consistency is almost like that of a thick smoothie but in a bowl. It is usually topped with fruit, oats, muesli, nuts, coconut and/or choc chips.
Depending on the size of the serve (which are usually large at cafes), an açai bowl can contain between 550 – 700 calories! Now if you were to order 2 poached eggs, slice of sourdough bread with a side of wilted greens, and grilled tomato and mushrooms, you would only be having around 350 calories plus you would feel fuller for longer due to the high protein content of the eggs and fibre from the veggies. What’s worse is the amount of sugar an açai bowl can contain. One bowl can have up to 75 grams of sugar depending on the toppings used. So, in my opinion, unless they are adding protein powder to the bowl, the açai bowl is just a bowl of sugar and with some nutrients which you could get from a more balanced brunch choice.
So unless you are using açai at home and controlling your portions, and adding protein such as the Slim Mama Shake, an açai bowl it isn’t worth the calories and could potentially sabotage your weight loss.
I know what you’re thinking, “Kristy, aren’t avocados good for me? They’re the good kind of fat?”. This is true! Avocados have a good kind of fat that is heart healthy and has anti-inflammatory benefits. The consumption of them is actually linked to longevity and vitality.
But when looking at this trend from a weight-loss standpoint, you may want to pass on the avo toast. The reason for this all comes down to the serving size and the added ingredients commonly put on avo toast. A serving of avocado is a third of a medium avocado, but most cafes and restaurants make their avo toast with the whole fruit (yes avocado is a fruit), so you can be looking at a meal around 300-400 calories. And that's before you add in the rest of the ingredients such as the thick slice of bread, poached eggs, and that drizzle of olive oil that chefs usually add - because fat is flavour at the end of the day. But one tablespoon of olive oil has 120 calories!
If you’re craving avocado toast, try making it at home and opting for egg whites and tomatoes in the mash for an added lean-protein and nutrient boost, and stick to 1 tablespoon of avocado. To get the health benefits of avocados, all that is needed is one tablespoon a day!