The Mediterranean diet is well known for its health benefits. One reason for this is the plentiful use of olives and olive oil. The olive tree spread throughout the Mediterranean basin 6000 years ago and is among the oldest known cultivated trees in the world. All three major religions have used or continue to use olive oil for special religious ceremonies. This history and the respect that was given to olives and olive oil was formed by the wisdom of people thousands of years ago who were using olive oil regularly and saw its first-hand benefits. Here is what research is showing us today that gives support to our ancestors’ intuition and practices.
Olive oil has been shown to:
- Protect against cardiovascular disease by lowering LDL cholesterol. In one study, they monitored the food intake of 100,000 men and women who were free of cancer, heart disease, and stroke at baseline over a 24-year period. After adjusting for major diet and lifestyle factors, compared with non-consumers, those with an olive oil intake over ½ tablespoon per day in place of other fats such as butter, had a 15% lower risk of any kind of cardiovascular disease and a 21% lower risk of coronary artery disease. Olives are also high in vitamin E, and olive oil increases nitric oxide and therefore circulation.
- Help with oxidative stress, pain and inflammation which could help many arthritic conditions.... Click to keep reading...