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Olive oil – health promoting effects on the body

There are many types of olive oil on the market, but it is worth learning how to recognize the one in the best health. This is important because good quality olive oil is not only a tasty and aromatic vegetable product. It also has several health-promoting properties. It provides ingredients that protect the body from dangerous diseases and keep it in good condition.

Which olive oil is best for health?

Olive oil is the oil extracted from the fruit of the olive tree during pressing. The most valued health, high-quality oil is obtained from the first cold pressing. Therefore, it should have the designation “extra virgin”. Such a product is rich in the necessary nutritional value: antioxidants, fatty acids and vitamins. It retains some of the antioxidants and bioactive compounds from the olive as the only one.

It is worth checking if it comes from a certified producer when buying olive oil. Only such will ensure properly pressed product and pay attention to the lowest possible acidity (which guarantees the high content of valuable substances).

What else to watch out for when buying olive oil? First, check the quality certificate on the label and whether the oil has been diluted with other refined oils. To avoid buying the lowest quality olive oil, or somewhat olive pomace oil, look for “SANSA (from Italian) or “POMACE”. This is the oil obtained by chemical extraction and refining olive pomace, which is better to avoid.

What are the health benefits of olive oil?

Olive oil is trendy in the world. People who care about their health and proper nutrition bet on it without reason. It is a source of priceless benefits for the body, confirmed by numerous studies. As already mentioned, the most valuable for human health is extra virgin olive oil, cold-pressed and obtained from the first pressing.

So what are the health benefits of extra virgin olive oil? It is rich in antioxidants, beneficial fatty acids and vitamins E and K. The content of such vitamins affects the body – supporting the cardiovascular system, heart function and balancing cholesterol levels. They also prevent the formation of blood clots. As for fat, to be more precise, olive oil consists of saturated fatty acids (about 13%) and polyunsaturated omega-6 and omega-3 (about 6%). Omega-3 and six unsaturated fatty acids remove toxins from the body and effectively support metabolism. The dominant fatty acid, which makes up 73% of the oil content, is monounsaturated oleic acid. It has a perfect effect on the human body, e.g. it has a positive influence on the work of the heart and the cardiovascular system. Studies show that a diet rich in monounsaturated fats has a beneficial cardiovascular marker. Oleic acid:

-supports the proper functioning of blood vessels,
-prevents atherosclerosis,
-protects the body against hypertension,
-has a positive effect on cholesterol and glucose levels.

Another critical effect of olive oil is reducing the risk of stroke. This is because the product improves blood vessels’ lining and helps prevent excessive blood clotting. Studies have shown that people who consume olive oil are much less likely to die from a stroke. This is probably also because you are more likely to eliminate other unhealthy fats from your diet by choosing olive oil in your diet. This certainly has a positive reflection on health.

When it comes to the mysterious-sounding antioxidants contained in olive oil, these are called antioxidants. They protect the body against free radicals, which accelerate the ageing process and affect the development of serious diseases. Among other things, antioxidants become natural protection against cancer. What is essential, a strong antioxidant is an oleocanthal present in olive oil. However, we can find it only in extra virgin olive oil. We will not even see it in olives themselves because it is formed only when the fruit is crushed. The content of this antioxidant in oil depends on the variety of olives, how the olive trees are grown and the extraction process. Remember that refining the oil deprives it of antioxidants.

How to use olive oil for health benefits?

To feel the health-promoting effects of olive oil, you can use it differently. First, of course, it will work perfectly in any kitchen. Many dishes will give a wonderful Mediterranean flavour. It goes well with herbs (oregano, thyme, rosemary), pepper, garlic and paprika. Olive oil can be used for preparing sauces and dressings, marinating (e.g. grilled dishes), cooking (soups) and frying (vegetables, onions, etc.). This fat can be processed without fear of heat since its antioxidants are resistant to high temperatures. It also retains all its nutritional value. As an alternative to butter or margarine, olive oil can also be added to baked goods. Extra virgin olive oil also tastes good without any heat treatment, served with fresh vegetables, cheese, salads and even bread.

It can be used internally as part of a balanced diet. It also works well externally as a natural cosmetic. It can also be used in compresses, masks and homemade scrubs. It is also used as a natural moisturizer and lubricant in hair, skin and nail care.


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