Health Benefits of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Health Benefits of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

HEALTH BENEFITS OF EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

Extra virgin olive oil receives increasing attention in the media for its healthy attributes. A staple
of the Mediterranean diet, the benefits are becoming well documented through scientific
research and through observations of olive oil rich cultures such as the Ikarians in Greece,
where many live to be over 100. Scientists are only beginning to truly understand why these
benefits occur but many range from improving general health to creating disease fighting
properties.

Alzheimer’s Disease

The polyphenol associated with bitterness and pungency in extra virgin olive oil, oleocanthal, is
linked to protecting the brain from the toxic substances that cause Alzheimer’s disease.

Stroke

Research from France showed that individuals with diets rich in olive oil were 41 percent less
likely to suffer a stroke in comparison to those who did not follow olive oil rich diets.

Osteoporosis

A new study shows that consuming a diet rich in extra virgin olive oil may increase bone density
thus reducing the risk of osteoporosis.

Cancer

Extra virgin olive oil is linked to reducing the risks of some types of cancer. Oleocanthal, the polyphenol present in pungent and bitter extra virgin olive oils, is associated with increasing cell death of cancer cells and reducing inflammation. Oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid present in olive oil, was shown to suppress the development of a protein produced by the breast cancer gene Her-2/neu. Research also shows that extra virgin olive oil in combination with a healthy lifestyle, may help slow the development of skin cancer.

Cholesterol

Studies have linked daily extra virgin olive oil consumption with reducing LDL cholesterol (bad) and increasing HDL cholesterol (good) to help create the healthy balance needed between the two.

Blood Pressure

Research shows that consuming extra virgin olive oil can help reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

Diabetes

Studies show antioxidant rich extra virgin olive oil can help decrease damage caused by oxidative stress associated with high levels of sugar in the blood.

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