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Information on Health Benefits of Olive Oil
On November 1, 2004, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced that producers of olive oil may place the following health claim on product labels: “Limited and not conclusive scientific evidence suggests that eating about two tablespoons (23 grams) of olive oil daily may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease due to the monounsaturated fat in olive oil. To achieve this possible benefit, olive oil is to replace a similar amount of saturated fat and not increase the total number of calories you eat in a day.”
Recent medical studies have provided evidence in support of the health benefits of incorporating olive oil in a person’s diet. Olive oil has been shown to have the following health benefits:
- Heart Health – reduces cholesterol levels; lowers blood pressure.
- Anti–Cancer Properties – oleic acid in olive oil blocks the action of a cancer-causing agent found in some breast cancers; protects the cells of the colon from certain types of cancer-causing chemicals.
- Anti–Inflammatory Benefits – associated with lower rates of asthma and rheumatoid arthritis; monounsaturated fats in olive oil help reduce inflammation.
- Weight Loss – replacing saturated fats with monounsaturated fats may result in loss of body weight and fat mass. http://www.brownalumnimagazine.com/content/view/2917/40/
In March 2005, Dr. Javier Menendez of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago published a study in the Annals of Oncology that the oleic acid found in olive oil blocks the action of a cancer–causing oncogene which is found in about 30% of breast cancer patients. The study also found that oleic acid improved the effectiveness of a certain breast cancer drug. http://annonc.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/16/3/359