How Much To Eat:
One olive (no stone) weighs approximately 3g. Olives are high in salt, so people with high blood pressure should moderate their intake. About a small handful a day is good measure. That may be approximately 6 olives. Use olive oil as a dressing or to cook with. Note that one tablespoon of olive oil is 120 calories. No more than one tablespoon with every meal !
Flavones are one of the phenolic phytochemicals in olives. Olive oil contains a range of other phenolics. Phenolics, along with vitamin E, give the olive and olive oil, its well known antioxidant power.
Maximising the Benefits:
Virgin olive oil is “pressed” from olives; “extra virgin” olive oil is richest in phenolic compounds. Raw olives are bitter due to a phenolic compound, oleuropein, and are made edible by being pickled or marinaded in salt or oil.
Population studies link diets high in monounsaturated fat and / or olive oil with a reduced risk of breast cancer.
A Mediterranean diet high in extra virgin olive oil might help to protect against age-related decline in mental function.
Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fats, which have beneficial effects on the body’s cholesterol levels. Human studies investigating diets rich in olive oil also show blood pressure-lowering and anti-blood clotting effects. All benefit health and help explain the longevity of people who enjoy a Mediterranean diet.
Here are some more health benefits of eating olives:
- Olives are a good source of fiber
- Olives act as an antioxidant, protecting cells
- Olives reduce the effects of degenerative diseases such as benign and malignant tumours, Alzheimer’s, improves varicose veins and cavities.
- Olives help prevent blood clots that could lead to a myocardial infarction or deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
- Olives offer great protection against anemia
- Olives boost fertility and help reproductive system
- Olives play an important role in maintaining a healthy immune system, especially during oxidative stress and chronic viral diseases
- And just in case these benefits weren’t enough, they are also a great aphrodisiac.
- Olives are nutritious and rich in mineral content as sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus and iodine
- Olives provide essential vitamins and amino acids.
- Olives contain polyphenols, a natural chemical that reduce oxidative stress in the brain. So by eating a daily serving of olives helps improve your memory by up to 25%.
- Just one cup of olives is a great source of iron – 4.4mg.
- Eating olives can improve the appearance of wrinkles by 20% since they contain oleic acid, which keeps skin soft and healthy.
- By eating just 10 olives before a meal, you can reduce your appetite by up to 20%. This is because the monounsaturated fatty acids contained in olives slow down the digestion process and stimulate the hormone cholecystokinin, a hormone that sends messages of fullness to the brain.
- Not only does it do that, but it also helps your body to stimulate the production of adiponectin, a chemical that burns fat for up to five hours after ingestion.