It’s your go-to pantry staple that turns almost any dinnertime delight into a masterpiece. Yet, how much do you really know about olive oil?
In a world where dietary fats have seen their fair share of controversy, researchers herald this healthy version far and wide, especially the extra virgin type.
Today, we’re taking a deep dive into the health benefits of olive oil so you can pour some into your pan with confidence the next time you’re ready to fire up the stovetop.
Ready to learn more? Let’s go!
1. It’s Full of Healthy Monounsaturated Fats
Real olive oil consists of only around 14% saturated fat. Its main fatty acid is a monounsaturated fat known as oleic acid. This accounts for more than 70% of the oil’s content.
What does oleic acid do? To start, it has anti-inflammatory properties and can reduce blood cholesterol levels. It can also help combat heart disease, diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure.
2. It Features Antioxidants
Olive oil contains significant amounts of Vitamins E and K in addition to its nutritious fatty acids.
This helps it exhibit powerful antioxidant properties that can slow or reverse ageing and help consumers ward off chronic diseases.
As their name suggests, antioxidants work to prevent your blood cholesterol from oxidizing, which also lowers your risk of heart disease.
3. It Doesn’t Cause Weight Gain
Stressing about olive oil calories as you stir some into your favourite pasta dish? You shouldn’t be.
Turns out, olive oil isn’t known to contribute to weight gain. A staple of the Mediterranean diet, it’s been scientifically proven to have beneficial effects on your body weight, instead.
In fact, one three-year study concluded that a diet rich in olive oil resulted in both improved plasma antioxidant capacity as well as weight loss.
4. It’s a Brain Booster
Alzheimer’s Disease is one of the most common and challenging neurodegenerative conditions. It’s caused in part by a buildup in the brain cells of substances known as beta-amyloid plaques and tau tangles.
One recent study revealed that in a laboratory environment with mice, an olive oil-rich diet helped to reduce these levels.
While more research is needed to develop a conclusive link between olive oil and improved brain health, these findings are promising.
5. It Can Help Manage Type 2 Diabetes
Those suffering from Type 2 diabetes know it can be difficult to regulate their body’s blood sugar, rendering some food items inaccessible.
The good news? Olive oil isn’t one of them.
It’s highly effective against the disease and can also aid in insulin sensitivity. Especially when combined with other features of the Mediterranean diet, it can help those affected manage their condition and others reduce their risk.
The Many Benefits of Olive Oil, Unveiled
You’ve always known it tastes great and dresses up any dish, but these health benefits of olive oil give you one more reason to keep it in stock.
Want more updates on what to eat to promote your health while satisfying your cravings? That’s where we come in.
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From olive oil to almond milk and everything in between, we’re a one-stop-shop for everything culinary. Check out our post on five of the best olive oil recipes to learn more!