Maybe you have already noticed that I always recommend using an olive oil for cooking. There is a good reason for that. Let’s see what are the health benefits of olive oil.
Olive oil benefits have proven for optimal health for thousands of years. Nowadays, its benefits have been scientifically acknowledged, investigated, and promoted for preventing cancer, inflammation, diabetes, and optimal health, including weight management.
It is one of the healthiest fatty oils, highly beneficial for your body energy needs and good health. Olive oil is rich in:
- Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats which help to decrease “bad” LDL cholesterol without reducing the “good” HDL cholesterol.
- Omega-3 fatty acids
- Omega-6 fatty acids
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin E
Research shows that when people replace saturated fat food with monounsaturated fat, they eat less food and maintain their desired weight easier. Other studies indicate that monounsaturated fat increases the body’s breakdown of stored fat.
One of the big benefits of olive oil, that you can freely use it for cooking and frying.
Olive oil stands up well to heat due to its high monounsaturated fats content. That also refers to its “smoking point,” the temperature at which a cooking oil begins to break down. It not only gives food an unpleasant taste, but oxidation and hydrogenation process makes such oil not healthy to consume.
Since olive oil is a highly monounsaturated oil and resistant to oxidation and hydrogenation, it stands up well to high frying temperatures when heated. Its high smoke point (410ºF or 210ºC) is well above the usual food frying temperature (356ºF or 180ºC). The quality and benefits of olive oil are not affected even when it is re-used several times for frying.
It’s a great oil to eat both in taste and health and is perfectly safe to cook with.
- To fully enjoy olive oil health benefits and wonderful flavor, add fresh olive oil to salads, pasta, grains or cooked vegetable meals.
- Eat for breakfast whole oatmeal with a little bit of salt and a tablespoon of olive oil
- Use it for cooking
Facts about worldwide consumption of Olive Oil
- Most of the global production of olive oil comes from southern Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East
- Worldwide, more than 750 million olive trees are cultivated
- 95% of trees are located in the Mediterranean region
- Greece devotes 60% of its cultivated land to olive growing. It is the top producer of black olives and has more varieties of olives than other countries.
- Main exports from Greece are going to European Union countries, mostly Italy