Olive oil is one of the most commonly talked about fats when it comes to healthy oils. It’s a staple in the Mediterranean diet and is used as a base for salad dressings, added to homemade pasta sauces, or even used to make pesto sauce. And, not only are there many different ways to enjoy olive oil, but there are plenty of reasons we should be enjoying olive oil to support better health.
Read on the learn about four health benefits of olive oil, and why you may want to consider adding this oil to your diet.
4 Health Benefits of Olive Oil
#1 Rich in Antioxidants: Olive oil is a very rich source of antioxidants, which can help reduce inflammation, and reduce your risk of heart disease. It makes a much healthier oil choice than refined and processed options like corn, soy, or canola oil.
#2 May Support Heart Health: One of the most impressive health benefits of olive oil is its potential to help support heart health. It’s a staple in the Mediterranean diet, which has been shown to help reduce your risk of heart disease. So, it makes sense that olive oil would make a great addition to your diet.
#3 Olive Oil May Support Brain Health Preliminary studies have shown promising results that olive oil may help benefit brain function, and combat Alzheimer’s disease. More research is needed, but so far, the benefits look promising.
#4 May Help Combat Bacteria Infections: Studies have shown that olive oil holds antibacterial properties, and may be especially beneficial for fighting against Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria in the gut that can lead to stomach ulcers, and stomach cancer. One study found that consuming olive oil, was actually able to get rid of Helicobacter pylori in 10-40% of participants.
How to Add Olive Oil to Your Diet
Olive oil is super easy to add to your diet, but it’s important to make sure you are getting a high-quality bottle of olive oil. You want to focus on quality, and opt for extra virgin olive oil, which still retains the important antioxidants you want to add to your diet. Also, opt for an olive oil that comes in a glass bottle to avoid BPA exposure and preferably a dark colored bottle to protect the oil from oxidizing if exposed to any light.
With that being said, here are some ways to add olive oil to your diet.
- Drizzle over a salad.
- Use in homemade pesto.
- Drizzle over veggies.
- Use in marinades.
- Mix into homemade pasta sauce.
- Use in place of butter.