The Anti-Aging Benefits of Olive Oil
By: Rachad Atat. Olive trees are the world’s oldest cultivated trees, abundant in the Mediterranean region, especially in Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, France, Italy, Spain and Greece. When we talk about olive oil, we always refer to extra virgin olive oil, extracted by cold pressing whole olives, as opposed to the cheaper, adulterated and less healthy olive oil sold in many stores.Overwhelming scientific evidence has shown that extra virgin olive oil is a powerful defence:- It can heal high blood pressure- Prevents strokes- Lowers cholesterol- It is a powerful defence against diabetes, arthritis, Alzheimer’s, osteoporosis and even skin agingThe olive oil you purchase should have a distinctive pungent, bitter flavour, so you can be sure it contains oleuropein, a special polyphenol linked to all of the anti-aging benefits mentioned above.How do I choose the best olive oil?– The highest quality comes from Greece, Spain, Italy and France.- The bottle should be dark and glass! When I see olive oil sold in clear bottles, I immediately know it is not worth it.- It should be cold-pressed, which means no heat or other chemicals are involved in the extraction process.- It should have a bitter taste.- Always aim for one which has lower oleic acid (less than 2%) since higher acid content (oleic acid) means the olive oil has been highly refined and processed and is no longer virgin.How much do I consume? At least two tablespoons a day, with four tablespoons a day being idealA great tip for weight loss:Before having your dinner, eat whole grain bread with olive oil. I like to add thyme. This habit helps you feel fuller and will make you eat less.