What is Extra Virgin Olive Oil?

What is Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Extra virgin olive oil is made by crushing olives and extracting the juice. It is the only cooking oil that is made without the use of chemicals and industrial refining. It’s ultimately the juice of fresh, healthy olives.

 

Extra virgin is the highest quality and most expensive olive oil classification in the market. It should have no defects and a flavor of fresh olives. It must be produced entirely by mechanical means without the use of any solvents, and under temperatures that will not degrade the oil.

 

It’s not that easy to create extra virgin olive oil. A producer must use fresh olives in exceptional condition and monitor every step of the process with great care. Extra virgin olive oil doesn’t stay that way. Even in perfect storage conditions, the oil will degrade over time, so it’s essential to enjoy it within its two-year shelf life.

 

Extra Virgin Olive Oil is…

What is Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Fruity

 

Expect to taste enjoyable fruit flavors reminiscent of fresh ripe or green olives.

Ripe fruit yields oils that are milder, aromatic, buttery, and floral, while green fruit yields oils that are grassy, herbaceous, bitter, and pungent. Fruitiness also varies with the type of olive.

 

Bitter

 

For the most part, fresh olive oil will have a mostly pleasant acrid flavor sensation on the tongue. A peppery sensation in the mouth and throat is a sign of a surplus if nutrients in good, fresh extra virgin olive oil.

 

The Difference Between Virgin and Refined

What is Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Virgin Olive Oil

Virgin means the oil was made by pressing olives. It didn’t undergo any of the industrial processes used to make ‘refined’ oils such as canola, sunflower, soybean and the lower grades of olive oil labeled ‘Pure,’ ‘Light,’ and simply ‘Olive Oil.’

 

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

 

Virgin olive oils that have modest taste defects and meets somewhat less strict chemical parameters are labeled ‘Real Extra Virgin Olive Oil. It is usually really hard to come by.

Refined Olive Oil

 

Olive oils that are industrially refined to remove unpleasant tastes are marketed as ‘Pure,’ ‘Light’ and simply, ‘Olive Oil.’  These refined oils are produced on a large scale like seed oils, those such as canola, peanut, soybean and sunflower oils, however refined olive oil is still a monounsaturated fat (MUFA) and is a healthier choice than the other refined cooking oils.

Olive Varieties

 

Just like multiple grape varieties used for wines, there are more than 1,000 olive varieties, each with its own unique taste characteristics. Chefs are only beginning to explore the almost limitless possibilities by pairing mono-varietal extra virgin oils to enhance their culinary creations.

 

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How To Cook With Olive Oil

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Olive Oil helps:

  • Carry the flavor of foods and spices
  • Provides a pleasing feel in the mouth
  • And satisfies the appetite

 

A wide-range use of it will enhance both savory and sweet dishes without guilt because of its incredible health-boosting properties (although if you’re trying to lose weight, you may not want to overdo it, because like all fats, it provides nine calories per gram).

 

Virgin and Extra-Virgin Olive Oils are best used uncooked or cooked at low to medium temperatures. Refined and Olive grade oils are the choices for high-heat uses, such as frying.

 

An oil’s smoke point is the temperature at which it smokes when heated. Any oil is ruined at its smoke point and is no longer good for you. If you heat an oil to its smoke point, carefully discard it and start over. Olive Oil has a higher smoke point than most other oils (about 400 degrees Fahrenheit). Refined Olive Oils have a slightly higher smoke point (about 410 degrees Fahrenheit).

 

Tips for Cooking with Olive Oil

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Although extra-virgin and virgin Olive Oils stand up to heat remarkably well, they do lose flavor as they’re heated, so they are best for uncooked dishes. Use them to harmonize the spices in a dish, to enhance and build flavors, and to add body and depth.

 

Additionally, Olive Oil also balances the acidity in high-acid foods, such as tomatoes, vinegar, wine, and lemon juice. In general, treat your Olive Oils as you do your wines, carefully pairing their tastes with the flavors of the other ingredients in the dishes you are creating.

 

Here are some ways to use olive oil:

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  • Drizzle it over salad or mix it into salad dressing.
  • Use in marinades or sauces for meat, fish, poultry, and vegetables. Oil penetrates nicely into the first few layers of the food being marinated.
  • Add at the end of cooking for a burst of flavor.
  • Drizzle over cooked pasta or vegetables.
  • Use instead of butter or margarine as a healthy dip for bread. Pour a little olive oil into a small side dish and add a few splashes of balsamic vinegar, which will pool in the middle and look very attractive.
  • For an easy appetizer, toast baguette slices under the broiler, rub them lightly with a cut clove of garlic, and add a little drizzle of olive oil.
  • Replace butter with olive oil in mashed potatoes or on baked potatoes. For the ultimate mashed potatoes, whip together cooked potatoes, roasted garlic, and olive oil; season to taste.
  • Make a tasty, heart-healthy dip by mixing cooked white beans, garlic, and olive oil in a food processor; season to taste with your favorite herbs.
  • Use olive oil in your sauces — whisking will help emulsify, or blend, the watery ingredients with the oil in the sauce.

 

The Most Versatile Version of Olive Oil

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You can use multipurpose fine Virgin Olive Oil in almost any recipe. It is moderately priced despite being close in flavor to more expensive extra-virgin olive oils. Plus, you can use it in high-heat applications, so feel free to grab fine Virgin Olive Oil when you need to saute, pan fry, or stir-fry.

 

Fine Virgin Olive Oil is also the ideal choice when you want quality flavor but not that strong olive taste. Try these tips for fine Virgin Olive Oil in your kitchen:

 

  • Brush it on meats before grilling or broiling to seal in the meat flavor and juices and create a crispy exterior.
  • Add to eggs and drizzle over toast.
  • Sprinkle on brown rice.
  • Before refrigerating homemade pesto, add a thin layer of fine virgin olive oil on top of the sauce after putting it in a jar so the pesto will keep its green color.

 

Baking with Olive Oil

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Most people don’t think of using olive oil when baking, but it’s actually an incredible way to get more monounsaturated fat and polyphenolic compounds in your diet. Choose the lite, light, or mild type of olive oil for baking, especially savory breads and sweets such as cakes, cookies, and other desserts. Because of the filtration these types of oils have undergone, they withstand high-heat cooking methods.

Substituting Olive Oil for butter dramatically reduces the amount of fat — especially saturated fat — in your baked goods. And of course, Olive Oil does not contain any of butter’s cholesterol. You’ll also use less fat — you can substitute three tablespoons of Olive Oil for a quarter-cup of butter. The product still turns out as expected, but with 25 percent less fat, fewer calories, and more heart-healthy nutrients.

Olive oil can enhance the flavor of almost anything you eat. Now that you know how it gets to your table, you’ll know how to get the most out of it.

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Extra Virgin Olive Oil Improves Health for Fibromyalgia Sufferers

Extra Virgin Olive Oil | Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disease syndrome that causes musculoskeletal pain for sufferers. The pain can be so weary that it can imposes physical, psychological and social limitations that decrease quality of life. The overall prevalence of fibromyalgia is 1.2 to 5.4 percent, with women suffering with the condition more often than men.

 

Its onset and causes are not fully understood. Various research studies have tried to investigate the condition and have found the cause to be many factors including impaired hormone function, altered neurotransmitters, increased inflammation, and oxidative stress, which arises as a leader.

 

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Extra Virgin Olive Oil | Olive Oil | Oil |

Extra Virgin Olive Oil  (EVOO) is a natural antioxidant that has been shown to play a vital role in down regulating oxidative stress in an assortment of studies. Previous research has shown that antioxidant rich supplements and foods have decreased pain in fibromyalgia sufferers.

 

Until now, there have been no studies examining the effects of Extra Virgin Olive Oil  on fibromyalgia outcomes. For the first time ever, a study published in Biological Research for Nursing, aimed to investigate if Extra Virgin Olive Oil  could contribute benefits on oxidative stress markers and health parameters in 23 women participants suffering from fibromyalgia.

 

Participants were enrolled in a 3 week randomized, controlled, double-blind trial. The intervention included the consumption of Extra Virgin Olive Oil  or refined olive oil (ROO), each group consuming 50 ml/ day of raw oil. The organic olive oil samples were both from Olifarma S.L., Granada, Spain and consisted of different antioxidant content.

 

Participants were required to complete a series of 24-hour food recalls. Estimates of olive oil consumption, along with macro and micronutrient quantities were calculated from the average of 3 days of food recall data. Based on baseline results, participants were given nutritional instruction for improving their diet and supplied with olive oil samples.

 

Along with dietary data, participants were also required to undergo interviews and questionnaires about their physical and mental status and functional capacity in activities of daily living, along with having blood samples collected to measure various oxidative parameters.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil | Olive Oil | Oil |

The results showed that the Extra Virgin Olive Oil group significantly reduced oxidative stress markers, had a greater reduction in levels of protein carbonyls, and decreased lipid peroxidation levels, whereas the ROO group showed no such effects. However, as far as the antioxidative profile, there was no difference between the two groups for enzymatic activity. Though zinc levels did increase in both groups.

 

The Extra Virgin Olive Oil  group showed significant changes in relation to health-related parameters, where the ROO group showed no effect on these outcomes and even showed a worsening of scores in relation to some values.

 

The authors concluded that for the first time, it had been revealed that Extra Virgin Olive Oil  may protect patients against fibromyalgia-induced oxidative stress by diminishing protein, lipid, and DNA oxidation and raising zinc levels as well as improve functional capacity and health-related psychological status.”

 

They stated, “our data reveal that consumption of organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil  may improve oxidative stress in patients with FM, suggesting that its consumption contributes to the dietary intake of biologically active compounds.”

 

The authors speculated that these effects are likely due to phenolic compounds oleuropein and hydroxytyrosol but suggest that further research is not needed to confirm these results and establish contributing mechanisms to these effects.

 

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Source:

 

Biological Research for Nursing

 

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