SAN DIEGO — A researcher at Loma Linda University in Southern California is looking for 250 willing participants to eat avocados for six months in exchange for $300.
Dr. Joan Sabaté, director of the Center for Nutrition, Lifestyle and Disease Prevention at Loma Linda University believes that while avocados contain the highest fat content of any fruit, they may actually aid weight loss, according to the university’s website.
Penn State University, and the University of California, Los Angeles, will partake in the study with LLU and will each recruit 250 people to participate in their separate studies. A total of 1,000 people will participate in the avocado study.
According to the university’s website, participants for the study must:
- Be 25 years of age or older
- Be willing to either eat one avocado per day for six months or eat only two avocados per month for the same period
- Measure at least 40 inches around the waist if they are male, or
- Measure at least 35 inches around the waist if they are female.
Sabaté said participants will be randomly assigned to one of two groups. The test group will be given 16 avocados every two weeks and are required to eat one avocado per day throughout the six-month study. The control group will be required to eat no more than two avocados per month during the same period.
Those chosen will receive a free MRI and health screening and are asked to attend a monthly meeting with a dietitian. Upon successful completion of the study, participants in both groups will be paid $300 each, and members of the control group will be given 24 avocados to enjoy.
The study is funded by the Hass Avocado Board. However, Sabaté says this sponsorship will not affect the findings. “For the last 20 years, we have been doing dietary intervention studies on plant-based foods and nuts. We are rigorous in our selection of projects,” he stated on LLU’s website.