Are All Olive Oils Healthy? Not Really! Know Which Is The Healthiest Olive Oil For Cooking
pouring eating oil in frying pan
Fats are one of three macronutrients essential for overall health and make up a large part of our bodies. We cannot absorb vitamins A, D, E or K without the fats in our diets. Healthy fats, such as nuts and seeds, cheese and olive oil can keep stress at bay, improve mood swings, decrease mental fatigue and can actually help you manage your weight. It is high time that we stop criticizing and ridiculing fats all the time. While fat in general have a bad reputation and has been linked to weight gain, not all fats are bad. You just have to make the right choices and be careful of the quantities.
No doubt, olive oil is a healthier option and should be replaced with the normal cooking oil. The important question that arises in our mind is that are all olive oils healthy? The answer is no. Olive oil is made from the pressing of olives. Extra virgin olive oil is rich in flavours as it is not diluted and undergoes minimal processing. Olive oil is rich in antioxidants, which reduces inflammation and protect scells against oxidization. It has also been shown to help lower cholesterol, reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancer. The healthy fats in olive oil are a sustained source of energy which contribute to brain health, enhance the mood, promotes hormone development, while also keeping us full longer and the list is endless. You can use olive oil in all in your dishes, top it on your salads, roasting and grilling.
Have a look at health benefits of extra virgin olive oil:
1. Antioxidants and healthy fats:
Regular olive oil is refined and in the process all the important nutrients and antioxidants are striped off. In contrast, the natural extraction process used to produce extra virgin olive oil ensures that it retains all the nutrients and antioxidants from the olive fruit. In particular, it is rich in phenolic compounds, which are powerful antioxidants that protect the body against free radicals. Free radicals are molecules that cause cell damage and can lead to disease and the aging process. As an added benefit, extra virgin olive oil is primarily made up of monounsaturated fat which helps in maintaining a healthy heart.
2. Reduced risk of type 2 diabetes:
Type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease and is affecting a lot of people worldwide. This serious condition is characterised by the reduced effectiveness of insulin, the hormone that moves glucose out of the blood and into cells which can further be used as energy. The phenolic compounds present in extra virgin olive oil aids in glucose metabolism and improves the sensitivity and effectiveness of insulin. Incorporating olive oil in your daily diet could reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. You can add olive oil into your salads and even replace your cooking oil with this healthier option.
3. Makes food more nutritious:
Extra virgin olive oil makes the food all the more nutritious and delicious. This is because the antioxidants in the extra virgin olive oil are so resistant to high heat that they do not break down and instead end up being absorbed by the cooked food. In addition, it also helps the cooked food to retain some nutrients that are usually lost in the process of cooking.
4. Brain health:
The phenolic components of extra virgin olive oil may help clear the compounds that cause brain degeneration. If your diet is high in extra virgin olive oil it may inhibit the compounds responsible for some brain diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. As an added benefit, polyphenols, the powerful antioxidants found in extra virgin olive oil, help to combat the oxidative stress and anxiety associated with aging.