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Archive for the Category 'Olive Oil for Health'

Olive Oil Health Benefits

Monday, March 09th, 2009

The Health Benefits Of Olive Oil

For many years, the use of olive oil in preparing meals has been considered a heart healthy investment. The taste of olive oil is not too popular with many people and therefore is not used in their diet. Which is a shame because olive oil has been proven to be a heart healthy fat.

Besides the heart being benefited by the use of olive oil, the gall bladder is able to function better, breast and colon cancer can be reduced in number and olive oil has also been used to treat arthritis. Because of poor eating habits, or the numerous low fat diets being advertised, many people are deficient in the essential fatty acids that olive oil provides.

Olive oil is used as a source of energy, keeping arteries flexible and reducing the risk of heart disease. There are small amounts of Omega 6 and Omega 3 found in olive oil which helps in maintaining the function and fluidity of the cell structure. There is no cholesterol in olive oil.

Beta carotene and tocopherols are also contained in olive oil. Olive oil’s color is rich in magnesium and it is widely known that individuals with a history of cardiovascular disease are deficient in magnesium.

Squalene is another make up of olive oil. It is a precursor of phytosterols which protects against cholesterol absorption from foods. This helps in delivering oxygen to the body’s tissues. Squalene dilates blood vessels, thereby decreasing atherosclerosis and increasing the heart’s activity.

As you have guessed, olive oil is widely known to be a healthy fat needed by the body in order to carry out its mission of maintaining health. Take for instance your skin. The healing properties of olive oil counter acts chapped lips, dry skin and brittle hair that are so common during the winter months. Dab a little olive oil on chapped lips; apply to the dry areas of your skin and treat your hair to a few tablespoons of warmed olive oil, leaving the oil in your hair for about 30 minutes before rinsing it out. Your entire body will benefit with an olive oil soak. Add ¼ cup olive oil in your bathwater along with a few drops of lavender. What an absolutely wonderful way to end your hectic day – with an olive oil soak in which few drops of soothing lavender has been added. Who needs a spa?

The heart and the entire cellular structure of the body reap untold health benefits with the addition of olive oil in the diet. Olive oil is not a dangerous fat that people should avoid. It is a fat that prevents certain illnesses that may endanger a person’s life. By incorporating the use of olive oil you just may experience what many people already know about olive oil. It is a skin and body friendly addition to the diet.

Adding Olive Oil To Your Diet

Thursday, February 05th, 2009

If you would like to eat and live more healthy, you can do so by cooking with olive oil, because it contains a high level of monounsaturated fatty acid. Olive oil is used to generously marinade, cook, and bake with in the Mediterranean area.

No one is sure where the use of olive oil began, but the use of cultured olives goes back more than 6,000 years. Stories were told by the ancient Romans and Greeks that the gods created olives instead of people. In Roman mythology is it said that the birth of olives originated when Hercules hit the earth causing an olive tree to grow.

The Greeks said that olives were created by the Greek goddess Athena. She was well respected and it was believed that only pure men and virgins could care for the olive groves. Olives were considered scarce and beloved food.

Some of the first documentation of olives were inventory catalogues found on old trading ships, that carried olive oil on the sea routes in the Mediterranean. When olives arrived in Greece they were adored for use as beauty treatment, oils in lamps, as well as food.

At the time of the Roman Empire civilization traveled and the growth of olive groves in southeast Europe. While olive oil was important to the Empires southeast parts, they arranged near the oil provinces. When the fall of the Roman Empire occurred olives groves would not flourish and for many years would only survive in very few places in the large hills of Tuscany.

Olive groves came back around in about 1100 AD when Tuscany became a acclaimed place of agriculture of olive trees. Some strict laws which are still followed today include regulating the cultivation of olives and the business of oil. Italy offered a great oil that appeared in renaissance restaurants in Europe, and soon became the top producer of olive oil on the continent. Because of taxation activities, the production of olive oil staggered, but still proceeded to grow as civilization increased throughout the world. During the 1700’s the first olive trees were brought to the new world by Franciscan missionaries. A century later, olive oil first appeared in North and South America when Greek and Italian immigrants started requesting it be brought over from Europe. Soon after this occurred olive oil was accepted by the American chefs.

Olive oil will continue to become more popular in the 21st century as it is a vital part of cuisine around the world. Now 800 million olive trees grow in the world today, while more will be planted daily.

[tag] olive oil information[/tag]


Vinaigrette: the details

Monday, April 07th, 2008

Vinaigrette the how to:

Its not always important to emulsify the vinaigrette before using it, especially if you are drizzling it over a salad. You will find that the oil and vinegar will combine when you toss the ingredients. Also, if you are thinking of using it to sauce a plate, it might be good to also have some clumps of olive oil eddying in the vinegar, particularly if it will be used with a fillet of sole.

How you make a vinaigrette really depends on your preference. You can also shift away from the 3 is to 1 ratio. After all, the vinegar that you use may also vary in acidity (the range is usually 4 to 8 percent or even more):

For vinegar that is highly acidic, you can add up to 4 parts oil to 1 part vinegar. The same is the case if you want to use a bit of lemon juice with the vinegar or if you want to substitute lemon juice for vinegar altogether. If you are using an excellent kind of olive oil, you can also use more of it to emphasize its taste. 

For delicate salads composed of fresh herbs and butter lettuce, you can use a higher amount of extra-virgin oil that is especially floral in taste. This makes for softer vinaigrette.

For sharper tasting vinaigrette, use a bigger percentage of aged balsamic vinegar. This will complement dishes that need a more prominent flavor, such as a wilted bitter green salad or a grilled steak.

For use with wild salmon or seared flank, vinaigrette with a pronounced mustardy taste will also be great.

You can also play around with the flavors. For example, you can combine mellow sherry vinegar with walnut oil, or add some toasted sesame oil to olive oil and mild rice wine vinegar.

Experiment with the texture of your vinaigrette. You may add ingredients that enrich the texture. Examples are grated ginger, stone-ground mustard, finely diced shallots, honey or some mashed roasted garlic and chopped basil. This not only adds texture but body as well.

Another aspect to experiment on is the temperature. You can make a hot vinaigrette buy using pan juices as substitute for some of the oil. You can also heat the vinegar. This will perfectly set off a plate of pan-seared hanger steak or some roast chicken.

At the end of it all, however, you may choose to keep it simple. After all, a vinaigrette at its most basic form is often the one that tastes best. 

[tag] vinaigrette and how to make[/tag] 


Oil and Vinegar Vinaigrette

Monday, April 07th, 2008

Vinaigrette and the Salad Bar

Yearning for some vinaigrette? All you need is vinegar, olive oil, some salt and your trusty pepper grinder. This is the quick and easy list of ingredients to make vinaigrette, which is a sauce that does not look or feel like sauce but tastes oh, so great. “La sauce vinaigrette” as it is called in French has the magic to change a bowl of salad greens into a great-tasting treat.

Yes, you can pour vinaigrette over a pan-seared steak, some greens, roasted chicken or grilled fish. So you see, vinaigrettes are not just for salads but for other food as well.

Vinaigrette surely comes in handy, when you have a lot of visitors. You can use it as a sauce to transform simple fare, especially sea food fresh from the market.

When making vinaigrette, keep in mind that the best proportion is 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar.  As simple as this is, the few ingredients must be of high quality in order for you to make great-tasting dressings or sauces. As much as possible, try to use the best ingredients you can find, which includes vinegar, oil, some salt and black pepper.

In a medium bowl and a whisk and combine salt and pepper into the vinegar. After this, add in the oil. Voila! You have your basic vinaigrette that you can use as a sauce. Remember, the order is important as salt does not dissolve in oil, only in vinegar.

Other variations include adding with olive oil and red wine vinegar. You can also include spices, herbs, mustard or some shallots. You can also change the oils. There is white wine vinegar, walnut or hazelnut oil, and balsamic vinegar.

To make sure that the oil is properly blended, slowly pour oil into the mixture while whisking continuously. A bit of Dijon mustard added to the vinegar before adding the olive oil will also help in emulsifying the mixture. (However, if you are using an excellent kind of olive oil, avoid the mustard, as this will mask the fine distinction offered by the oil).

[tag] oil and vinegar vinaigrette[/tag]


Olive Oil in your daily diet

Wednesday, March 26th, 2008

It is essential for any diet to contain levels of fatty acids and these are contained in olive oil in the form of alpha linoleic acid and linoleic acid which are also known by their respective names of Omega 3 and Omega 6. For those whose nutrition intake is poor then the inclusion of these vital nutrients can be assisted by an intake of olive oil.

However, there are many types and levels of fatty acids found in olive oil some are essential and some are not. The greatest levels of non-essential fatty acid is known by its generic term omega 9 or Oleic acid and makes up to almost three quarters of the olive oil fats. The purpose of this non-essential fatty acid is to that it acts as an anti-oxidant and protects genetic structures in the body and acts as a defence against toxins to cell membranes.

The soft structure of healthy cells allow for the intake of nutrients and the release of hormones and proteins into the body. If the structure of the cell membrane compromised or damaged then nutrient intake would be hampered thus creating problems for the release of those hormones and proteins that enable the body to function properly.

For those concerned with keeping cholesterol levels low they should consider olive oil as an alternative to other fats as it does not contain any amount of cholesterol at all. Though olive oil does contain some saturated fat called palmitoleic acid, or omega-7, the levels are very low and only comprise a tenth of the fatty acids.

Protection from damage to arteries and stem cells can be found in certain anti-oxidants and anti inflammatories, known as tyrosol and hyroxityrosol which are contained in phenolic substances. So, although saturated fats are usually known to increase levels of cholesterol that is not the case in those contained in olive oil.

Other anti-oxidants contained in olive oil are derived from vitamin E and are known as tocopherols and beta-carotene. Olive oil also contains magnesium in the form of chlorophyll, which is found in all green plants and is the reason why olive oil has its distinctive colour. It is known to be beneficial to those who suffer from coronary related diseases as it contains high levels of magnesium, which is often found to be lacking in those people.

Healthy tissues rely on the efficient delivery of oxygen. Squalene is a substance contained in olive oil that assists in the delivery of oxygen to the body’s organs and also assists in the blocking of cholesterol intake from certain foods. The facts about olive oil should prove to be a convincing enough argument for you to include it into your daily diet.

[tag] olive oil in the daily diet[/tag]

Olive Oil, Diet and Health

Wednesday, March 26th, 2008

The health advantages of olive oil in the diet is proven through history

Olive has always played an important and in some cases focal part of diet. The properties of olive oil have been espoused for generations by those who understand its health benefits. Even from the advent of an age where our first tools were created, elements of the Mediterranean diet were instinctively used for the impact they have on our wellbeing.

There are many types of olive oil and they may not always suit an individual’s taste or palate. For some, the flavour of olive oil is not so appealing. For others, it is the saturated fat content that may cause some concern. In this vein it is well worthwhile researching the different types of olive oil available in the hopes of one being compatible with your particular needs. The type of olive oil that is most beneficial is extra virgin olive oil and to help you make a considered choice there are many different brands to choose from though the health benefits of each remain the same. The following are to name but a few: Pompeian, Spectrum, Tre Tomi, Bertolli, Antic and Italia.

The health properties of olive oil from countries in the Mediterranean have been thoroughly researched and the findings of many institutes that carry out such studies affirm that olive oil is indeed beneficial to health.

Olive oil contains monounsaturated fatty acids and well as other essential vitamins and as such is deemed to be an appropriate fat to maintain a healthy heart.

What the properties of olive oil do for you is to provide protection against coronary related illness, breast and colon cancer, arthritis and assist in enabling the gall bladder to operate efficiently. Olive oil also maintains a healthy heart by reducing arterial damage.

What may be of particular use to most people in their daily lives is that an intake of olive oil can be converted in the body to create energy.

[tag] olive oil health[/tag]


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