The beneficial properties of olive oil and the Mediterranean diet in general, confirms new American research.
Vegetables, fruits, fish and olive oil strengthen bones, improve brain function and reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease and stroke.
According to research presented at the conference of the American Heart Association, the use of olive oil in the diet reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease by 7% compared to margarine or mayonnaise.
Those who consume even more olive oil, in fact, more than seven grams or half a spoon a day, are 15% less likely to develop cardiovascular disease and 21% less likely to develop coronary heart disease. Olive oil, however, does not seem to reduce the risk of stroke.
“It is better to replace margarine, butter or mayonnaise with olive oil, instead of adding it along with other animal or vegetable fats to the existing diet. “The most important thing is to replace unhealthy fats with olive oil, thereby lowering cholesterol,” said Dr. Frank Hu, head of the Department of Dietetics at Harvard University School of Public Health.
The research data of Dr. Hu confirmed a 2013 study of 7,000 people who found that those who followed a Mediterranean diet with extra virgin olive oil for five years were 30% less likely to have a heart attack.
At the same time, according to the research, the consumption of olive oil helped to control body weight and maintain the proper functioning of the brain.
Extra virgin olive oil and not just olive oil produces the lowest percentage of saturated fat among oils in frying, according to a 2018 Australian survey.
In second place is coconut oil while canola oil, which is the most popular in the US, has been described as the most harmful to frying.
American Harvard scientists recommend the use of olive oil in salads, but also spaghetti sauces, such as Italian “pesto”, as well as for “sautéing” vegetables, frying salmon and other fish.