Extra virgin olive oil is in demand for its myriad health benefits. Here is information about its nutritional value and uses.
Olive oil is the primary ingredient of the staple food in the Mediterranean diet. It is obtained by pressing olives, a fruit found in the Mediterranean regions. Apart from culinary uses, it finds its applications in several fields. It is used in the preparation of cosmetics, soaps, pharmaceuticals, and even to light lamps. The different varieties of olive oil include extra virgin, virgin, light, pure, fine, and super fine. One of the many advantages of olive oil is that it contains monounsaturated fats.
An Overview of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
The oil obtained from the first press is known as extra virgin olive oil. It undergoes lesser chemical processes and is considered as the best and finest quality olive oil. As it is extracted from the first press, it has very little acid content (1%). As it undergoes lesser chemical processes, it is not as fine as light or super fine olive oil, and may contain finer pieces of olives. It is more popular for its excellent taste and aroma. It has a strong aroma and taste which is different from the typical pungent odor of the ordinary olive oil. While preserving, remember to place it in a dark container in a cool dry place to prevent it from turning rancid.
Olive oil is preferred because of the low fat content in it. The nutritional value of all the types of olive oil is similar.
|Total Fat 7g||11%|
|Saturated Fat 1g||5%|
|Total Carbohydrates 0g||0%|
People who have a regular intake of extra virgin olive oil are found to be less susceptible to coronary heart diseases. They have lesser chances of developing atherosclerosis, asthma, diabetes, and colon cancer. Extra virgin oil specially contains an antioxidant called polyphenols which protects the heart against several diseases. Its high content of monounsaturated fats are very beneficial for heart health.
On the other hand, olive oil, specially the extra virgin version, is very easy to digest and also prevents gastric problems. It contains high amounts of vitamin E as compared to other versions. Additionally, it is beneficial because it prevents hair damage and hair fall. It is used to make hair shiny and glossy. It also makes the skin supple and smooth.
It can be used as an ingredient for preparing pasta, salads, sauces, with meat, or simply spread on vegetable sandwiches. You can add spices to it to add different flavors. It should not be used for deep-frying as it tends to burn and produce smoke very quickly. As extra virgin oil is directly obtained from farms, it is equally popular among organic food lovers. As a concluding note, remember that extra virgin olive oil is the best and most superior version of olive oil you can ever buy!