Olive Oil: The Great Therapeutic, Perhaps Now More than Ever

Who knew that olive oil would receive interest from the scientific community as a potential health-enhancing “cure-all”?

Hippocrates, the “Father of Medicine,” that’s who! Hippocrates referred to olive oil as “the great therapeutic” more than 2,400 years ago.

Its health enhancing qualities have been valued by healers with knowledge of powerful all-natural remedies and those concerned with their personal health since the dawn of medicine.

 

Olive oil: “the great therapeutic.” ~Hippocrates

 

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)

Its components are increasingly being singled out for their roles in disease prevention. Studies showed that EVOO in the Mediterranean diet is “associated with improved health, lower mortality and increased longevity, reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and the incidence of age-related cognitive decline as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.” [1]

It was the liberal use of EVOO in the Mediterranean diet that was substantially credited with producing these results. The beneficial effects that EVOO has on inflammation [2] and against oxidative stress [3] have been well publicized. The most compelling and exciting evidence that I’ve seen regarding EVOO’s health benefits is related to its strong association with healthy aging. [4]

 

Taking care of cellular aging

A primary tenet of my work is, “by taking care of cellular aging, everything wellness related will take care of itself.” EVOO is an invaluable food source capable of producing real wellness benefits by producing favorable genetic expression. The science that investigates the effects of lifestyle on genes and how they are expressed is called epigenetics.

 

All-natural help for fighting depression

Hot-off-the-press scientific literature has revealed how EVOO may provide invaluable support for combatting stress and anxiety. During these times of public health and infectious disease induced anxiety and depression are steadily increasing.

Depression from social isolation, worry, and concern for the future is rising on a curve slightly behind documented Covid-19 cases. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, clinical trials showed that the Mediterranean diet is correlated with low incidence of depression. It was suggested that olive oil, used widely in the Mediterranean diet, was a major contributor to the improvement observed in depressive symptoms. [5],[6]

 

Consume only the purest and freshest olive oil for best results

To be effective olive oil must be “extra virgin.” It must be cold pressed and extracted without the use of chemicals. Seek the freshest source of EVOO available. Olive oil will oxidize over time and lose some of its ability to reduce inflammation and cellular oxidation.

It is wise to seek a local proprietor that specializes in olive oils and vinegars if possible. They will be able to share valuable insights regarding the products including country/region of origin and “press” dates of the olives. A great LKN area company that specializes in olive oils is the Enchanted Olive: Healthy Oils and Spices. I encourage the liberal use of EVOO for its ability to enhance both foods and health.

 

 

  1. López-Miranda J, Pérez-Jiménez F, Ros E, et al. Olive oil and health: Summary of the II international conference on olive oil and health consensus report, Jaén and Córdoba (Spain). 2008. Nutr. Metab. Cardiovasc. Dis. 2010; 20:284–294.
  2. Schwingshackl L, Christoph M, Hoffmann G. Effects of olive oil on markers of inflammation and endothelial function—a systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutrients. 2015;7(9):7651–7675.
  3. Fabiani R, Rosignoli P, de Bartolomeo A, et al. Oxidative DNA damage is prevented by extracts of olive oil, hydroxytyrosol, and other olive phenolic compounds in human blood mononuclear cells and HL60 cells. J Nutr. 2008;138(8):1411–1416.
  4. Fernández del Río L, Gutiérrez-Casado E, Varela-López A, Villalba JM. Olive oil and the hallmarks of aging. Molecules. 2016;21(2):163.
  5. Sánchez-Villegas A, et al. The effect of the Mediterranean diet on plasma brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels: The PREDIMED-NAVARRA randomized trial. Nutritional Neurosci. 2011;14:195–201.
  6. Sánchez-Villegas A, et al. Mediterranean dietary pattern and depression: the PREDIMED randomized trial. BMC Med. 2013;11:208.

 

 

Photos courtesy Pixabay.com

 

Wayne Coolidge, Jr., M.Ed., CHES is an author, speaker, and innovative Health Promotion Scholar-Practitioner. He owns Wayne Coolidge Health Promotion, a consulting firm specializing in healthy aging, nutrition, nutritional supplementation, fat loss, fitness, and disease prevention. His expertise is designing lifestyle-optimization strategies leading to positive genetic expression, controlled cellular aging, health, and wellness. He has accumulated more than 31,000 hours of one-on-one training and personal consultation experience over a 37-year career. Wayne’s web site www.waynecoolidge.com. You can email him at wayne@healthydynamicliving.com.

 

 

 

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