BIOLOGICAL PROPERTIES OF OLIVE OIL
Olive oil: a natural healthy juice
Olive oil is a natural juice and from the first time of the pressing of the olive crop it retains the natural flavours, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other healthy substances of the olive fruit.
Extra virgin olive oil, together with the sesame oil, can be consumed right after their pressing without having been processed using chemical substances. It is known that almost every other plant oil has been detoxified and refined with chemical substances.
Olive oil rich in healthy unsaturated fats
Olive oil is rich in healthy unsaturated fat acids (mono-unsaturated and poly-unsaturated) which are beneficial to health and especially to heart diseases. Olive oil contains (per 100g) an average of 73g monounsaturated and 11g poly-unsaturated fat acids. No other naturally produced oil has as large an amount of monounsaturated fat as Olive Oil. And furthermore, the modest amount of well-balanced polyunsaturated fatty acids in Olive Oil is well protected by its own natural antioxidant substances. It has low (pro 100g) content of saturated fat acids (an average of 14%). In contrast, the animal fats contain a large number of saturated fat acids and cholesterol and are dangerous for our health.
Olive oil: rich in healthy antioxidant substances
Olive oil has high amount of natural antioxidants and nourishing components (e.g. poly-phenols, vitamin E, carotenoids, etc.). Much of the benefit of olive oil consumption has been attributed to the presence of natural antioxidant compounds.
One of the desirable health components of olive oil are poly-phenols. They are not only the natural anti-oxidants but they are also responsible for its distinctive rich flavour. Poly-phenols have been shown to have a host of beneficial effects from healing sunburn to lowering cholesterol, blood pressure, and risk of coronary disease. They are advantageous not only to human health but also to the health of the olive. Phenolic compounds protect the olive fruit and prevent oxidation of its oil. In addition, they increase the shelf life of olive oil.
There are as many as 50 mg of antioxidant poly-phenols in every 100 grams of olive oil. It should be mentioned that any other nut and seed oils have no poly-phenols. The quantity of phenol content in olive oil depends on olive fruit variety, time of picking, olive processing method, whether the oil is refined and the length of time the oil has been stored.
Olive oil is an excellent natural source of vitamin E (14 mg per 100g) which is also a natural antioxidant and which can improve the appearance of skin and hair. It is also the second best source of Vitamin K (62 mg per100g). It is widely believed that antioxidant substances such as vitamins E, K and poly-phenols found in olive oil provide a defense mechanism that delays aging and prevents diseases.
It is absorbed by the organism in 98% while it gives the same number of calories as all the other natural oils.
Olive oil is about 10% omega 6 and 1% omega 3, therefore the ratio is 10:1;
Energy 890 kcal 3700 kJ
Carbohydrates 0 g
Fat 100 g
– saturated 14 g
– monounsaturated 73 g
– polyunsaturated 11 g
– omega-3 fat <1.5 g
– omega-6 fat 3.5-21 g
Protein 0 g
Vitamin E 14 mg 93%
Vitamin K 62 mg 59%
100 g olive oil is 109 ml
Ideal for frying
Olive oil’s monounsaturated fats are more stable and heat-resistant than the poly-unsaturated fats that predominate in other oils. The olive oil, being rich in monounsaturated fatty acid and poor in polyunsaturated fatty acids and also because its sufficient content of natural antioxidant substances (especially the virgin olive oil), is ideal for frying more than any seed oil.