Virgin olive oil is the fat extracted from olives through cold pressing without addition of any chemicals.
It has a distinguishing aroma and flavor and is used for culinary purposes, for making cosmetics, pharmaceutical products and soaps. Virgin olive oil is rich in polyphenol antioxidants and monounsaturated fatty acids including oleic acid.
It also has significant amounts of beta-carotene, vitamin E and antioxidant squalene.
Health benefits of virgin olive oil
- Reduces risk of cardiovascular diseases: Being rich in antioxidants and having anti-inflammatory properties virgin olive oil controls lipid peroxidation in our blood. Polyphenols like hydroxytyrosol, oleuropein and luteolin present in the oil prevent platelet aggregation. Moreover its oleic acid reduces bad or LDL cholesterol and blood pressure. All this contribute to prevent atherosclerosis, heart attack and stroke thereby keeping our cardiovascular system healthy.
- Helps to Get Rid of Keratosis Pilaris Fast Natrually
- Lowers risk of type 2 diabetes: The monounsaturated fats present in olive oil promote synthesis of the hormone Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) that stimulates insulin secretion by pancreas. This further helps to control blood sugar levels.
- Improves hearing naturally .
- Cancer prevention: Oleocanthal, a phytonutrient present in olive oil checks inflammation and lowers risk of breast cancer. Squalene and lignans in the oil are associated with curtailing other cancer types. Daily consumption of 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil has been found to reduce risks of cancers affecting breast, respiratory tract and digestive tract. Consumption of antioxidant rich olive oil can retard malignant melanoma of skin.
- Cognitive benefits: The oleocanthal present in the oil safeguards nerve cells from damage and thereby prevent Alzheimer’s disease or neurodegenerative dementias. A study done in France depicted that regular use of olive oil in cooking as well as in sauces and dressings enhanced visual memory and verbal fluency in older adults.
- Good for our bones: Higher levels of virgin olive oil in the diet are associated with increased mineralization and calcification of bones. This helps to prevent and ease symptoms of osteoporosis.
- Helps in digestion: Abundant polyphenols present in virgin olive oil prevent harmful bacteria from invading the digestive tract and cause infections. They retard the growth of H. pylori bacterium that causes ulcers, belching, bloating, nausea and fatigue.
- Benefits for skin: Virgin olive oil serves as a good moisturizer for both dry and oily skin. Massaging it on sunburned skin and stretch marks enhances elasticity, heals it and lightens stretch marks. Also it treats chapped lips and dark circles under the eyes effectively.It also cures Acne .
- Benefits for hair: Warm virgin olive oil massaged on scalp treats dandruff and makes hair lustrous.
- Good for fetal development: Including olive oil in pregnant women’s diet promotes brain development as well as increase height and weight of the fetus. Children born to these mothers have better learning capacities.
Caution: Exposure to high heat, air and light can reduce virgin olive oil’s health benefits and taste. So it needs to be stored in a dark place in room temperature and should not be heated above its smoking point. So rather than using it for cooking it is better to be used for dressing.
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