Wikipedia Discussion on Avocados

count me out

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It’s an encyclopedia derived from original work and continuously reviewed. That makes wikipedia much more accurate than anything else I’ve ever found, including encyclopedias in general. It also quotes it’s sources. In this case there is a single source quoted for the nutritional panel:


It’s been copied correctly. It’s a valid source because it is a second source (not primary research), there is another in the nutritional paragraph (reference 83 at present):

Hass Avocado Composition and Potential Health Effects [NIH summary article]
https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10408398.2011.556759 [full article]

That’s also a second source, it’s broadly consistent with the USDA table but it does state that the carbohydrate number is “by difference”, the consistency is not surprising since this Dreher/Davenport article quotes the USDA as a source… It also offers an explanation:

Compared to other fruits, avocados contain very little sugar (USDA, 2011). One-half an avocado contains only about 0.2 g sugar (e.g., sucrose, glucose, and fructose). The primary sugar found in avocados is a unique seven-carbon sugar called D-mannoheptulose and its reduced form, perseitol, contributes about 2.0 g per one-half fruit but this is not accounted for as sugar in compositional database as it does not behave nutritionally as conventional sugar and is more of a unique phytochemical to avocados (Meyer and Terry, 2008; Shaw et al., 1980). Preliminary D-mannoheptulose research suggests that it may support blood glucose control and weight management (Roth, 2009). The glycemic index and load of an avocado is expected to be about zero.

Notice that this is talking about sugar alone, not all carbohydrate. 1/2 fruit is 68g in this case (I wish people would stick to percentages…) This page, which requires JavaScript gives a significantly different set of numbers:


It’s almost impossible to quote in-line; read the page (with JavaScript enabled.) Using the 100g(percentage) figures (bold) and giving the USDA figures afterwards in italics:

Total Carbohydrate12.8% 8.53%
Dietary Fiber 10.1% 6.7%
Starch 0.2%
Sugars 1.0% 0.66%

So just those two sources give net carb values from 1.83% to 2.7%. This is a large part of the problem, particularly with smaller serving sizes the US nutritional label practice of rounding to grammes. Avocados end up seeming to have no net carbs; as the quote above says, “[t]he glycemic index and load of an avocado is expected to be about zero.

They do have protein (2%) and fat (14.7%) but the protein number is also small. I normally ignore fat.

The SugarMate numbers seem to include “fiber” in the total carb count; it looks like they use the USDA database (the numbers are an exact match, when rounded). I hadn’t realized that, it’s annoying that there is no choice.

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In theory this should work well, and I tend to believe that it is reasonably accurate for things that are pretty banal like the nutrition info of an avocado. But where Wikipedia fails is when people have personal spats or most things historical or political. In those cases Wikipedia is usually highly biased or just flat out wrong based on who last edited. And outside of doing additional research, it is hard or impossible to detect unless you bring outside knowledge. Which is why our schools taught our children that Wikipedia couldn’t be used as a source.


I was taught to only use a printed encyclopedia as a source as the last resort, and only once. We had to find original sources. The encyclopedia could point you in the direction of the source material.

The worst offenders that I see are when I do a search. Many of the hits are just copies and pastes of the same thing. With perseverance I can sometimes find the original, not always.

Quite a few years ago there was a quote attributed to Nelson Mandela during one of his 2 inauguration speeches. It was all over the place, posters and the internet. It was actually from the book “A Return to Love” by Marianne Williamson. Oh and Mr. Mandela never said it. He might have approved.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate,” Williamson writes in A Return to Love . “Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world.”

It’s a stirring, inspirational passage tailor-made to remind people to be their best selves, which is probably what led commencement day speakers to pounce on it. In 1998, the New York Times reported that Hillary Clinton, astronaut Mae C. Jemison, and former Spelman College president Johnnetta B. Cole had all quoted Williamson’s “deepest fear” passage during graduation speeches — and all of them had attributed the quote to Nelson Mandela.
https://www.vox.com/culture/2019/7/30/20699833/marianne-williamson-our-deepest-fear-nelson-mandela-return-to-loveemphasized text

Well, I am riding along this Hijacked thread. Ah well, forgive me.


I can’t split it, so I’m not responding. I suggest “politics”, since any comments I make on the US school system will be deemed as such.