Olive oil is a liquid fat obtained from olives. The process of extraction includes pressing whole olives to extract the healthy benefits of this plant based oil. Olive oil is used in a variety of different ways. From cooking to topical uses, it has been widely known to have a large number of beneficial properties. There are fatty acids that make olive oil highly nutritional that include linoleic acid and palmitic acid. Since olive oil is a plant-based fat, it provides more nutritional value than fats that are animal based. It is a major component of the Mediterranean diet and can improve cardiovascular health when consumed on a regular basis. More and more, people are replacing unhealthy fats like butter and mayonnaise and opting for a healthier choice in olive oil. There are simple ways to incorporate this healthy plant-based oil into your lifestyle. Because of the unique taste of the oil, consuming it directly from the bottle can be a bit overbearing for some consumers. There are other ways to consume it to realize the nutritional benefits of this healthy oil.
Using olive oil as an alternative.
A simple change in your diet can make a world of difference in your heart health. Replacing fat such as butter and dairy fat with olive oil can be as simple as changing how you eat. This is essential when it comes to meal preparation. Often, our go-to cooking oil is butter or some other type of saturated fat. These saturated fats have been known to clog our arteries and increase the bad cholesterol in our bodies. Making the simple shift from saturated fats to vegetable based fats can make a huge difference in our cardio health. Due to the high concentration of monounsaturated fats, olive oil has been shown to lower our bad cholesterol (LDL). This is ultimately the best way to improve heart health.
Olive oil is a great source of monounsaturated fats.
One tablespoon of olive oil contains 13.5 grams of monounsaturated fats. Individuals who consume lower amounts of animal fat versus higher amounts of monounsaturated fats have been shown to have lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels. Olive oil is a major part of the Mediterranean diet, and is a dietary staple for the meals included within the diet plan. The foods that make up this diet plan are rich in fish, nuts and plant oils. These items help to lower inflammation in the body and improve blood vessel function. This diet has been ranked by numerous and reliable sources as a healthier diet choice. Ultimately, olive oil is a great source of monounsaturated fat and helps to reduce bad cholesterol. It can be easily incorporated into our diet by directly consuming it or using it as an alternative cooking oil.
The anti-inflammatory benefits.
Chronic inflammation in the body has been known to be the culprit of many of the most serious diseases. Olive oil has been used as a natural remedy to help reduce inflammation in our bodies. Inflammation is our body’s way of protecting us from infection, illness and injury. This is our body’s natural way of protecting itself. When chronic or long-term inflammation persists, this is when adverse diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer can become prevalent in the body. Olive oil contains linoleic acid, oleic acid and the antioxidant oleocanthal. All of these ingredients have been known to reduce inflammation in our bodies.
Olive oil and antioxidants.
This plant-based oil is loaded with an array of powerful antioxidants that reduce the risk of chronic diseases in our bodies. Some of these antioxidants have a powerful biological effect that further support olive oil’s ability to provide the nutrition we need for a healthy heart. Antioxidants are so important to our bodies because they inhibit oxidation. When oxidation occurs in our bodies, it produces free radicals that lead to cell damage of organisms. Oxidation of cells gives way to chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. Antioxidants’ sole purpose is to combat those free radicals to prevent or slow down damage at the cellular level. In addition to eating a diet rich in antioxidants, consuming a half of tablespoon per day of olive oil can help to combat the free radicals that cause chronic diseases in our bodies.
Olive oil and strokes.
Olive oil protects us against high blood pressure and high cholesterol. When the bad cholesterol builds up in our bloodstream, it creates plaque against our artery walls. This type of activity can lead to heart attacks and strokes. The main culprit of strokes are either blood clots or bleeding of the brain. By consuming plant-based fats that are high in monounsaturated ingredients, you’re able to possibly reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Individuals who consume meals within the Mediterranean diet have been shown to have a lower risk of strokes.
Incorporating olive oil into our diet.
The word diet can have such a negative connotation. If we were to change the word diet to the word lifestyle, it may have a more significant meaning. Changing your lifestyle doesn’t mean making a drastic change that you cannot sustain. By incorporating simple changes such as cooking techniques, you’re better able to make the changes that are needed for a healthier lifestyle. One direct way to consume olive oil is taking it directly everyday. The taste of olive oil is unique and can be a little overpowering for some. In such instances, taking an olive oil capsule may be a more viable solution. You’re also able to incorporate olive oil into your diet by using it as a cooking oil. Olive oil also makes a wonderful salad dressing when combined with a balsamic vinaigrette and a few dried herbs.
Can a half a tablespoon of olive oil per day improve heart health? The answer to this question is undeniably yes. Olive oil can be incorporated in simple ways to improve our overall health. The beautiful part is the changes don’t have to be drastic. Just by making a few adjustments in your daily lifestyle, you can incorporate an oil that has beneficial properties for your heart health.