The first thing I do in the morning is drink a big glass of filtered water. Then I swallow a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil.
And, no, I don’t particularly like the taste of raw olive oil.
I do it for health reasons.
I’ve had congestive heart failure, have blood pressure problems and high cholesterol.
And, there are studies offering significant data that olive oil helps treat all three of these ailments.
Olive oil is a fat.
Specifically, monounsaturated fatty acids, or MUFA’s.
Olive oil’s main ingredient is oleic acid. Oleic acid, according to a new study from The University of Edinburgh, can help prevent brain cancer because it stimulates the production of a key tumor-suppressing molecule.
In our household, we’ve used it to replace most saturated and trans fats, like margarine, etc.
We also use PUFAs, or polyunsaturated fats, too. PUFA’s are basically fats (oils) made from plants.
And, for frying eggs and such, we use organic butter…The Real Stuff.
Health Benefits of Olive Oil:
- lowers blood pressure
- lowers cholesterol levels
- boosts immune systems
- prevents cancer
- prevents strokes, and heart disease
- reduces risk of diabetes
- increases bone density
- can reduce depression
- protects against alzheimer’s disease
Not Backed By Scientific Studies:
While there’s evidence supporting the above list of benefits, the FDA hasn’t yet sanctioned any of them.
However, for people over 65, like myself, studies show improved memory and increased cognitive function, for people who have higher levels of monounsaturated fats in their diets.
Beware what olive oil you buy…
You can’t trust the labels on olive oil.
Labels of cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil (the kind you want) doesn’t mean that’s what’s in the bottle.
Extra virgin is supposed to signify the oil is singularly (no mixing) from the 1st pressing. (Today’s big producers use centrifugal force instead of a press to harvest the oil)
Light or extra light olive oils are filtered, or processed with heat and chemicals to take out sediments.
Because heat isn’t good for olive oil, and because I don’t know what chemicals are being used, I stay away from these.
World-wide regulation of olive oil production is pretty much name it and claim it.
The U.S. does have some regulations in place. Olive Oil Manufacturing Regulations
Here’s what I look for when shopping:
- label from the North American Olive Oil Association (NAOOA)
- grown and made in California
- cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
We buy our olive oil from Amazon.
Because of rapid turnover, we’ve found that Amazon ships products like olive oil, that are fresher than those we can buy at our local markets.
Yes, we can taste the difference…
Also, the oil from Amazon, is less likely to have been damaged by ultraviolet rays emitting from the lighting used at most retailers.
Ideas for me, your aging related story, or comments are always very welcome.