World’s Healthiest Food
Every weekend I talk and share my experience as well as knowledge about a particular food item. According to previous notice, today’s topic is ‘Olive Oil’. We have learnt about the benefits of olive oil for our skin in the last post. Today I am going to discuss the benefits of olive oil on our health- how olive oil, specifically, Extra Virgin Olive Oil changes our overall health by being consumed every day in our regular food.
The most important fact about olive oil is that it works as a natural medicine that suits every body type and has not a single reaction to anything else being consumed simultaneously. You don’t even need to consult your doctor before taking this medicine and more interesting fact about this is, you don’t have to dig a whole in your wallet to make this food available since it’s always found in your kitchen pantry. So the points to be noted are:
- Olive oil is inexpensive, cheap- to be more precise
- Olive oil is natural, healthy and has no side effects
- Olive oil suits every type of health & body
Now let’s take a look at the medical benefits of olive oil as well as Extra Virgin Olive Oil:
- The Fat Content: Olive oil, especially Extra Virgin Olive Oil is best known for its content of monounsaturated fat– a form of fat whose presence makes your health better and lowers the risks associated with the fat obtained from other different oils. Among all the cooking oils, olive oil has the highest percentage of monounsaturated fat content which is 75%. When we replace the oils that contain saturated fat and the other lower content of monounsaturated fat, with the one which contains higher amount of monounsaturated fat- we actually make a significant decrease in the total blood cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and LDL:HDL ratio. All of these are the indicators of your most loved heart’s health!
- The Oleic Acid: The basic reason that makes olive oil so heart-friendly is its level of Oleic Acid Content. Research have proved that this ingredient decreases the blood pressure and keeps it in complete healthy state.
- Cancer Prevention: 25 extensive researches in Milan, Italy have proved that regular intake of olive oil prevents cancers of the breast, respiratory tract, upper digestive tract and, to a lesser extent, lower digestive tract (colorectal cancers).
- Anti-inflammatory Benefits: It’s very unusual to find a cooking oil that acts as an anti-inflammatory ingredient. But olive oil, especially extra virgin olive oil does. In fact, the intake of 1-2 tablespoon of olive oil per day has been shown to be associated with significant anti-inflammatory benefits.
- Digestive Health Benefits: Olive oil and its ingredients are very much helpful for the digestive system as well as for the health of the digestive tract. The polyphenol in olive oil protects the tract from cancer.
- Benefits to the Bones: Surprisingly, olive is also beneficial to the bones; especially for the post-menopausal stage of women.
- Improvement of Cognitive Health: Olive oil has been proved to be of great benefit to the cognitive health e.g. memory, visual health, brain function etc. of older adults, in many researches.
Olive is of numerous benefits to our health- there is no denying to that. But what we need now, is to know how to store and use it. Let’s find out.
Although it may be thought that olive oil can function well enough even if kept in high temperature, since it’s got high percentage of monounsaturated fat which is heat-resistant; the fact is, olive oil should be stored properly and used within 1-2 months to ensure its healthy phytonutrients remain intact and available. In spite of being properly stored, the effects of olive oil have been found damaged after the period of 2 months. The best way to store olive oil is to keep it in tinted glass containers in a lightproof area e.g. closed kitchen pantry.
Now that you know the benefits of olive oil to your most precious health and also how to store it, followings are few tips to use it in your daily diet without being too bothered about the usage:
- Make your salad dressings with extra virgin olive oil
- Make your regular mashed potato a little healthier by pureeing minced garlic, cooked potato and olive oil together
- Drizzle olive oil over almost any kind or fried, baked or raw food item before serving
- Take your favorite bean, add minced garlic and puree together with olive oil to make a healthy dip
- Replace butter and other cooking oils to make the best use of olive oil in your food and on your health.
We have got a very short life to live enough and we are blessed with one body which is beyond a temple for us. Therefore, we should be taking the best possible care of our body by every possible way. If just the intake of a simple food item like olive oil can make so much of a difference to our health, why not make it a regular part of our cooking?
Love yourself and live to the fullest!
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- Food in Focus: Olive Oil III (soheleetahmina.wordpress.com)