April 25, 2024

The benefits of extra virgin olive oil

L’extra virgin olive oil is one of the typical foods of the Mediterranean diet. It is among the most widely used condiments in Italian cuisine and is mainly produced in southern regions such as Puglia, renowned for the quality of its oil and wine, Sicily, Campania and Calabria. In order for it to be defined as extra virgin, olive oil undergoes exclusively mechanical processing, excluding industrial treatment.

In it must be detectable certain properties such as the degree of acidity, not exceeding 0.8 percent and a score from an organoleptic point of view of not less than 6.5. Olive oil that does not meet these strict controls takes on other types of designation, which is why extra virgin oil is considered the most valuable.

Extra virgin olive oil is considered a highly beneficial food for the prevention and treatment of numerous diseases; below we list the main benefits brought by regular consumption of extra virgin olive oil.

Lowers cholesterol

Olive oil is the food par excellence indicated for those suffering from high cholesterol. By virtue of its beneficial properties, it is indispensable for lowering LDL cholesterol levels (also called bad cholesterol) while keeping HDL (the good one) levels stable: 100 grams of the product contain as much as 72.95 grams of acids, more than twice as much as sunflower oil.

Recent studies have shown that people who habitually consume olive oil have lower chances of being affected by cancer, particularly breast cancer. Reinforcing this claim, mortality due to cancer in Northern European countries is much higher than those in the Mediterranean area.

Reduces the risk of diabetes

According to an article published in the well-known journal Diabetes Care, a diet rich in extra virgin olive oil reduces the risk of incurring type 2 diabetes by 50%.

It is common to think that a diet high in fat can cause harm to the body, but it is not the quantity but the quality of fats that determines the onset of numerous diseases. A diet rich in monounsaturated fats, contained mainly in olive oil and nuts, helps prevent the body from several diseases. Our advice is to encourage the consumption of these healthy and wholesome foods, such as Puglia oil along with other foods typical of the Mediterranean diet.

Improves cognitive function

The presence of polyphenols helps prevent or delay the onset of neurodegenerative diseases, above all thealzheimer’s disease. In addition, it has been verified that consumption of extra virgin olive oil promotes improved mnemonic properties, especially on the elderly and children.

Consuming olive oil lowers the risk of depression and plays a role as a natural antidepressant.