Dr. Gundry’s quintessential phrase is “the whole purpose of food is to get olive oil into your mouth.”
Dr. Gundry lists the following extra virgin olive oil benefits:
- is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids (a good fat for the brain) and monounsaturated fatty acids that help control blood pressure
- contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory polyphenols which help your heart and defend against free radicals that age your skin
- aids vitamin processing and overall digestion
- decreases your blood cholesterol levels
- provides oleic acid which could help lower the risk of heart health issues
- reduces inflammatory activity because of ursolic acid
- is a source of vitamins like K and E and various minerals including calcium, iron, sodium, and potassium
Did you know that 10 pounds of olives make a liter of extra virgin olive oil? Extra virgin olive oil is unrefined; the olives are pressed instead of undergoing industrial processing. A much less acidic oil is the beneficial result. Also, extra virgin olive oil has undergone quality standards such as oil purity, taste, and scent. The olive oil should have a bitter taste, which is an indication that it contains antioxidants.
Some manufacturers mix old olive oil with fresh olive oil. How can you prevent being scammed? Look for the seals, “100% Qualita Italiana” and “California Olive Oil Commission (COOC) 100% Certified Extra Virgin” and “North American Olive Oil Association seal of certification” (a red circle with a green olive branch inside).
Additionally, olive oil bottles should be made of dark-colored glass to prevent exposure to light. Store the olive oil in a dark place, and keep the cap tightly closed to prevent oxidation (the oil going rancid). One source of olive oil that I recommend is California Olive Ranch Everyday Extra Virgin Olive Oil. It gives you a bitter kick at the back of your throat, a sign that it contains the antioxidants I mentioned earlier.
Olive oil is a safe cooking oil because the smoke point of high quality olive oil is high, and it is one of the most stable fats. The smoke point is the temperature that causes the oil to begin breaking down. Your oil will start to smoke/burn when it has hit its smoke point. The best sources of olive oil have a smoke point of 375 degrees Fahrenheit.