Olive Oil is fast becoming the world's favorite oil. This wonderful secret of many Mediterranean recipes is currently out in the open for the entire globe to enjoy. Olive oil is the fat which is obtained from crushing olives, a fruit that is primarily grown and cultivated in the Mediterranean area.
Health and culinary circuits cant stop raving about the benefits of this wonder oil. Feel like having a mild and healthy meal or just sprucing up your salad with some flavor? Olive oil with its distinct pungent flavor can add charm to so many of your boring dishes.
The Indian taste bud is also gradually embracing the western miracle, not just for its distinct flavor but also for the many health benefits that it holds.
It packs a healthy punch not just when consumed, olive oil also packs a bevy of skin, hair and beauty benefits too. Here's a roundup of all that you ever wanted to know about Olive Oil.
Benefits of olive oil: Olive oil is the fat which is obtained from crushing olives.
What Are The Kinds of Olive Oil?
While the world can't quit going gaga over the goodness of olive oil it is important to understand that there are many grades of olive oil. And each grade comes with its share of pros and cons different from the other variants. The highest grade of olive oil is the extra virgin olive oil, followed by virgin oil, and finally refined oil. These grades are defined by their ways of extraction.
Extra virgin and the standard virgin olive oil, is extracted straight from the olive fruit by simply squeezing the olives, which preserves the natural taste, flavor, pungency and maximum amount of benefits.
This way of extracting the oil straight from the fruit is called'cold-pressing'. This aids the oil retain its own flavor which may lose if the oil is exposed to high temperatures. The oil that are further processed and undergoes blending of chemical solvents, eliminates the original high grade quality of the extra virgin acrylic, and are clubbed from the refined variants of olive oil.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil:Extra virgin olive oil is obtained by crushing or cold-pressing olives and extracting the fresh juice. It is unrefined and the highest-quality olive oil you can purchase. Because of the way extra-virgin olive oil is made, it retains the true flavour of olives, and has a lesser degree of ellagic acid than the other varieties. It has a higher concentration of natural vitamins and minerals found in olives.
According to Consultant Nutritionist, Dr. Rupali Dutta,"Extra Virgin Oil has been exposed to zero processing, and has no additives that makes it bright green in color and has a strong olive flavor. It also contains only 1 percent of Oleic Acid and is able to retain all its antioxidants. Regular olive oil, on the other hand, is commercially produced and processed just like any other oil. It contains at least 3-4% of Oleic Acid."
Standard Virgin oil: Virgin olive oil comes from standard virgin oil manufacturing, or cold pressing just, it has an acidity less than 2 percent, and is proven to have a'great' taste, as compared to the Extra Virgin Variety. It cannot contain any refined oil. Virgin olive oil is good for cooking
Pure or blended olive oil: It may be called'pure', but they are mostly a mix of refined olive oil and virgin production oil.
Refined Oil: When virgin oils are shipped to the plantthey experience chemical processing, which makes them the"refined olive oils" Here they undergo processing that comprise heat, chemicals, or filtration. These refined olive have an acidity level of 0.3 percent or less, which also tends to give them a longer shelf life
Pomace oil: There is another variant of olive oil available in the market called the olive pomace oil. Once the typical, mechanized extraction of olive oil from the olive fruit is done , about 5 to 8 percent of the oil still remains from the leftover olive oil or the"pomace." This oil is called the pomace oil, and is used deemed great for cooking.
Although the pomace oil that is extracted is still technically oil that comes from olives, it is still not slotted using the virgin oil variety in terms of goodness, as many times the extraction from the pomace may use chemical solvents.
Olive Oil Health Benefits
Olive Oil is packed with several health benefits, Bangalore based Nutritionist Dr. Anju Sood says" It is great for your heart, hairskin and veins, even if you massage it on blood clots, the clots would heal soon. "Macrobiotic nutritionist and Health Practitioner Shilpa Arora ND says, "Olive oil is loaded with heart-protective polephenols that lower cholesterol.
It is also packed with anti-inflammatory properties. The mono-saturated fatty acids promotes metabolism and aids weight loss. "Dr. Simran Saini of Fortis Hospital also advocates the oil for the heart healthy properties,"Olive oil is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids- which enhances good cholesterol(HDL). It is also good for digestion, and keeps your hormones balanced."
Here is what makes Olive oil a healthier wager than other refined oil found on the market.
Source of Monosaturated fatty acids: Looking to shed some extra pounds? Switch to a diet plan that has least intake of trans fats. Olive oil is profuse with monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), a healthy fat that helps battle heart disease, cholesterol,and sometimes even blood sugar. Experts indicate that it is higher in MUFAs than sesame, coconut, rapeseed, sunflower and corn oil!
Source of Good Cholesterol: Olive oil boosts the flow High-density lipoproteins or HDL which is called the good cholesterol, which scavenges the blood stream of plaque and toxin formation.
Olive oil benefits: Olive OiI is has been linked to raising good cholesterol
Good for hearth Health: Diets with high in MUFAs are linked to a healthy heart and fewer strokes. Olive oil's ability to restrict LDL or bad cholesterol further bolsters the heart Health. And prevents strokes.
Great For Digestion: Olive oil can also work wonders for your gastrointestinal tract and colon. Olive oil helps stimulates the digestive system, making food transfer easily through the colon.
Rich in mono-saturated fats, olive oil helps in better freedom of food throughout the colon. This also helps speeding up bowel movement thereby constipation. Mixing a tablespoon of olive oil and a teaspoon of lemon juice can be an effective remedy for constipation.
Olive oil benefits: Olive oil is profuse with monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA),a healthy fat
May Treat Depression: Experts have said that Olive oil can increase the levels of dopamine, the brain chemical that is also called the happiness hormone. Majority of the anti-depressants also steer towards stimulating the production of dopamine.
Encourages brain health: The good amounts of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids present in extra virgin olive oil are great for brain and memory power.
Olive oil benefits: The omega-3 acids in olive oil are said to be good for brain health
Pain reliever: Oleocanthal, a chemical within the olive oil, lends olive oil immense anti-inflammatory properties, thereby making oliVe oil an excellent pain reliever make it externally or internally.
Apart from the numerous skin benefits, olive oil can do amazing things for your skin, beauty and hair too. Olive oil is packed with Vitamin E, and K that can come to the aid of several of your hair and skin problems. Here's a roundup of Olive Oil Benefits for skin, hair and beauty and how to use the wonder oil to your very best advantage.
Olive Oil For Skin Care
Moisturizes your skin
Olive oil contains vitamin E, which enhances skin health by treating inflammation, acne, and dryness. It also enhances skin elasticity and its regenerative properties. The anti-oxidants, minerals and good fats, fight the free radicals, and facilitate healthy and fuller skin .
Olive oil contains vitamin E, which enhances skin health by treating inflammation, acne, and dryness.
Reduce wrinkles and signs of ageing
A face pack made with olive oil( 2 tablespoon), and lemon juice(1 tablespoon), and a pinch of sea salt, can rejuvenate skin, and prevent it from sagging and other signs of ageing. Massage your face thoroughly, and repeat the regime at least three times a week. This would give you instant results.
A face pack made with olive oil( 2 tablespoon), and lemon juice(1 tablespoon)
Your nails desire as much attention as your own skin, simply dip a cotton ball in 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil and dab it on your nails, the vitamin E in olive oil helps to bring your dry brittle nails back to life.
The vitamin E in Olive oil can be great for nail health
Can be Utilized as a shaving foam replacement
Pressed for time? Can't go for waxing? Razor to the rescue! But beware, make sure you only use shaving foam or cream and not opt for soap. It can be rough on your skin. If you have run out of shaving cream, olive oil can be a good substitute for glide your blade over. Olive oil moisturizes the skin as well.
Treats cracked heels
Exfoliate your cracked heels, with a tablespoon of olive oil and lemon water, and see the instant results for yourself.
Olive Oil For Hair
Olive oil moisturizes your hair and reduces scalp irritation, which further reduces dandruff. Just heat a cup of olive oil and massage hair generously, especially on the scalp and the ends. Allow it to sit for 20 minutes, place which exfoliate your hair with mild shampoo.
Olive oil hair mask helps fight dandruff
Moisturizes Your Hair
The hair smoothening and strengthening qualities of Olive oil is fast gaining recognition throughout the world. Bring your lifeless locks back into life, with the moisturizing hair pack of olive oil (1/2 teaspoon), honey(2 tablespooon) and a protein rich egg yolk.
Mix the ingredients thoroughly to get a smooth paste. Apply the paste on your own hair and let it sit for twenty five minutes, and then rinse off with cold water. Follow the regime twice a week.
Promotes Hair Growth
Olive Oil is full of Vitamin E which makes your hair strong and prevents hair fall. Massaging regularly with olive oil can also fix the problem of split ends.
How to use Olive Oil for Cooking:
Extra virgin olive oil tends to have a subtle golden-green hue with a mild peppery flavour. Because it is taken straight out of the fruit and is not refined it has a beautiful crude and pungent smell too.