Olive oil and olives are a main component of the ‘Mediterranean Diet’, which also includes fruit, vegetables, legumes, cereal, poultry meat and fish.
Research has shown that the Mediterranean diet, where extra virgin olive oil is the main source of fat, produces the following health benefits, and more :
~ Reduces risk of coronary and cardiovascular disease
~ Lowers the level of total blood cholesterol, LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides. In addition, it doesn’t alter HDL (good) cholesterol and may even raise it
~ Helps reduce or manage blood pressure levels
~ Provides protection against many types of cancer, including breast, colon, prostate, and skin.
~ Prevents or delays the onset of diabetes, but also helps control blood sugar levels for those already managing diabetes.
~ Greater and long lasting weight loss than a low-fat diet
~ Beneficial for ulcers and gastritis and supports gastro-intestinal health
~ Helps combat constipation and bad breath
~ Provides general anti-inflammatory effects and may reduce the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis
~ Lowers incidences of gallstones
~ Helps bolster the immune system
~ Beneficial during pregnancy and breastfeeding
~ Shown to have a positive effect on depression and mood.
The following websites provide further information on the health benefits of olive oil.
Click to view the following documents on cooking with EVOO.