Olive oil is the healthiest fat that exists and the basis of the Mediterranean Diet, which has been recognised by UNESCO as an intangible cultural asset of humanity since 2013.
There are many benefits, vitamins and properties of olive oil and none of its disadvantages or disadvantages.
According to numerous studies carried out in research centres and universities all over the world, the properties of olive oil can be listed as follows:
- It activates the immune system against viruses, thanks to its high antioxidant content.
- It fights cholesterol as it raises the levels of good cholesterol (HDL) as opposed to bad cholesterol (LDL), thus improving blood circulation.
- It promotes digestive function and combats constipation. Very effective taken on an empty stomach when waking up.
- Source of vitamins A, E, E and K.
- Olive oil protects against inflammation, oxidative stress and cardiovascular risk caused by ageing.
- It is ideal for weight-loss diets as its oleic acid content reduces the sensation of appetite and speeds up the metabolism, allowing unhealthy fats to be eliminated.
- Used topically, it moisturises and tones the skin and hair, a practice that has been used since ancient times.
In addition, thanks to its monounsaturated (oleic acid) and polyunsaturated (linoleic acid) fatty acids, olive oil provides other important benefits according to the Spanish Heart Foundation:
- It raises HDL (good) cholesterol levels.
- It lowers LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol).
- It benefits the control of arterial hypertension.
- Reduces the appearance of thrombosis and prevents the onset of diabetes.
One of the most recent studies on olive oil, specifically one carried out by the Harvard School of Public Health in the United States, associated for the first time a higher intake of olive oil with a lower risk of total and cause-specific mortality.
The analysis concluded that the 5 % of the group consuming up to 9 grams of olive oil per day had other benefits such as:
– 19 % lower risk of cardiovascular mortality
– up to 17% lower risk of cancer mortality
– 29% lower risk of mortality from neurodegenerative diseases
– 18% lower risk of mortality from respiratory diseases.
Although extra virgin olive oil is a fat, being monounsaturated and unsaturated, it is not harmful to health, unlike the saturated fats found in other fats such as butter, margarine, coconut or palm oil, etc. And other fats used in processed foods in particular.
Thanks to its unique oleocanthal content, extra virgin olive oil also has inflammatory properties, making it beneficial for reducing joint and muscle discomfort.
Research has even linked the consumption of olive oil, as part of the Mediterranean diet, as a possible factor in preventing the development of certain cancers, thanks to its oleic acid.
According to studies published in the scientific journal Diabetes Care, this same Mediterranean dietary pattern with olive oil would be able to reduce cases of type II diabetes by up to 50%, as it is made up of healthy fats that help regulate blood sugar levels and insulin production.
Benefits of olive oil for the skin
In addition to all these properties, olive oil also has benefits for the skin and hair. It has been part of women’s beauty routine since ancient times.
As a great natural moisturiser, both on the skin, including the face, and on the hair, the oil provides shine, nourishment and softness. Just leave it on for a few minutes and then remove it, to avoid a greasy feeling and stains on clothes.
Extra virgin olive oil
All the benefits described in this article belongs to the highest category of olive oil, extra virgin olive oil.
And what is extra virgin olive oil? It can only be called extra virgin olive oil if it comes exclusively from the juice of olives, without colouring agents or preservatives, and has not been subjected to any chemical process.
And to know how to keep extra virgin olive oil, a 100% natural product, in good condition, the only thing you need to know is that it must be kept in an opaque container, which protects it from light, away from heat, which does not exceed 20º, and closed.
And now, enjoy all its properties, flavour and aroma!