Olive Oil is an essential part of the Mediterranean diet for thousands of years and its nutritional value and benefits in overall health cannot be talked about enough!
There are a variety of olive oils, nonetheless, Extra Virgin Olive Oil is often times the healthiest as it is known to reduce heart disease and damage from free radicals and acts preventatively against breast and colon cancer.
In addition, Extra Virgin Olive Oil is olive oil from the first pressing of the olives. Chemically speaking, Extra Virgin Olive Oil has in it less than 0.8% acidity, and is judged to have a superior taste as it contains 60 calories per teaspoon.
A majority of the calories in olive oil come from fat, with 7 grams of total fat per teaspoon and one gram of the fat in each teaspoon of olive oil being saturated fat. Furthermore, the fatty acids, like oleic acid, and antioxidant compounds in Extra Virgin Olive Oil may do more than just battle high levels of bad cholesterol.
According to the George Mateljan Foundation, reduced rates of breast cancer, colon cancer, insulin sensitivity and bone loss may all be aided with the consumption of olive oil.
Moreover, the ideal dosage of antioxidant polyphenols in Extra Virgin olive oil may help to protect the heart by reducing damage from free radicals and plaque build-up in the arteries, as well by acting as an anti-inflammatory.
According to Livestrong.org, Olive Oil contains vitamins E and K in which are both essential for cardiovascular health. Additionally, Vitamin E is necessary to form red blood cells, and vitamin K is crucial for normal blood clotting.
100g of quality Olive Oil usually contains 14mg of vitamin E and 62mcg of vitamin K which generally means about 7 tbsp. of olive oil provides 93 percent of the daily suggested allowance, or RDA, of vitamin E and 59 percent of the RDA for vitamin K.
In addition, Olive Oil contains small amounts of the minerals iron, calcium, potassium and sodium. These minerals have a variety of functions, among them supporting the cardiovascular system, and the red blood cells' ability to carry oxygen to all cells in your body.
Did you know that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends eating 2 tbsp., or 23g, of olive oil daily to reduce your risk of heart disease?