Health experts across the globe continue to disagree about what role fats like butter and coconut oil specifically play in our health. But there’s one fat that just about everyone agrees on – and that’s extra virgin olive oil. Virtually everyone agrees that extra virgin olive oil is incredibly good for you – and for good reason.
Today we’re going to dive into exactly what the health benefits of olive oil are. And most importantly, we’re going to cover how to choose the right kind of olive oil to ensure you reap all of its incredible benefits.
What Are the Health Benefits of Olive Oil?
Olive oil’s name is pretty self-explanatory – it’s the natural oil extracted from olives grown on olive trees. Olive oil is chock-full of health-promoting compounds like:
- Fatty acids (including Omega-3’s)
- Oleic acid
- Vitamins E and K
This potent combination of nutrients packs a powerful punch – delivering some impressive health benefits. Let’s dive into some of these.
Olive Oil Reduces Inflammation:
Olive oil has powerful anti-inflammatory properties mainly due to its hefty dose of potent antioxidants and health-promoting fatty acids. In fact, olive oil has been found to have anti-inflammatory properties as strong as the over the counter drug Ibuprofen. This is thanks to two of the key antioxidants – oleocanthal and oleuropein.2,3,4 Fatty acids like those found in olive oil have also been found to significantly reduce a number of certain inflammatory biomarkers.5
Olive Oil Boosts Heart Health
Olive oil has been found to be incredibly beneficial for heart health and has been scientifically proven to: 6,7,8,9
- Lower blood pressure
- Improve the health of your blood vessels
- Prevent blood clots
- Protect against LDL cholesterol – the “bad” cholesterol
- Reduce the risk of stroke
- Protect against heart disease
Talk about a boost for your heart health!
Olive Oil Protects Your Brain
Olive oil has been found to boost brain health and even protect against neurodegeneration.10 In fact, studies have found that regular consumption of olive oil has such remarkable neuroprotective effects that it’s being studied as a way to combat – and potentially even reverse – the effects of brain diseases like Alzheimer’s.11,12
Olive Oil Lowers Risk of Cancer
When left unchecked, harmful molecules known as free radicals can cause oxidative damage. Over time oxidative damage can lead to injury at the cellular level and change the way your cells reproduce – leading to cancer. Olive oil has been found to help neutralize free radicals, reduce oxidative damage, and even fight cancer cells.13,14
Does the Quality of Olive Oil Matter?
When it comes to olive oil, quality matters – a lot! You see, not all olive oil is created equally. The conditions in which the olive trees are grown can dramatically impact the nutritional profile of the olive oil you purchase.
There are a few specific things you’ll want to look for to ensure you’re getting the highest quality olive oil. You’ll want to look for:
- Extra virgin olive oil: extra virgin olive oil refers to oil that has been extracted using mechanical means only – meaning it hasn’t been exposed to chemicals or heat.
- Organic: Opting for organically grown products ensures your olive oil is free from harmful fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and other toxic chemicals.
- High polyphenol and antioxidant content: When olive trees encounter obstacles like lack of water, or elevated temperatures, they have a natural defense mechanism to get them through. In response to these challenges, the olive tree increases its production of polyphenols and antioxidants to protect itself from its environmental challenges.15 This spike in health-promoting polyphenols and antioxidants is then passed on to you through the tree's olive oil.
Following these simple guidelines will ensure you’re reaping all the health-boosting benefits of olive oil.
What Is the Healthiest Olive Oil?
While there’s not necessarily one specific olive oil that can be labeled the healthiest – there are some olive oils that pack a more powerful punch. And among those olive oils, includes my favorite brand of olive oil – Olivie.
Olivie’s olive oil is scientifically proven to contain significantly higher antioxidant and polyphenol levels than other brands. In fact, their Olivie Plus 30X olive oil contains 30 times more antioxidants than regular extra virgin olive oil!
They are able to produce olive oil with particularly concentrated levels of health-promoting antioxidants and polyphenols by harvesting oil from olive trees grown in the harsh, torrid, and rocky deserts of Morocco. Overcoming these severe conditions creates an enormous spike in antioxidant and polyphenol production – which then makes its way into the olive oil.
Olivie makes it easy to reap the benefits of their high-quality olive oil – you can enjoy Olivie olive oil in a few ways:
- Olivie Plus 30X Olive Oil: A little goes a long way… 1 tsp is 30X more potent in antioxidants than regular olive oil and 5X more potent in polyphenols.
- Olivie Force/Rich Capsules: All of the health benefits of extra virgin olive oil concentrated into capsule form.
- Olivie PowerUp (Caviar): Delicious olive tree pearls, perfect for sprinkling on top of your meals.
Now it’s time to hear from you. Were you surprised to learn exactly how beneficial olive oil really is? How are you incorporating more olive oil into your diet? Leave your questions and thoughts in the comments below!
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The product mentioned in this article are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information in this article is not intended to replace any recommendations or relationship with your physician. Please review references sited at end of article for scientific support of any claims made.