Biophenols vs. Phenols

There has been a lot of confusion lately about Biophenols versus Phenols since we’ve been switching over to the new system on Fusti Tags. Phenols have to do with the sensory information of the oil, but Biophenols is a recognized system for testing that carries a lot of weight. Please read this Biophenol letter for some in depth information that will help expand your knowledge on this:

BIOPHENOLS PROFILE
As science developed, we have learned that a significant amount of health attributes related to extra virgin olive oil are not only linked to its profile rich in monounsaturated fatty acids but also to its biophenol content. In the early days, total biophenol content was simply measured by measuring the reaction of this complex group of substances with a colorant (Folin-Ciocalteau). The darker the blue colour developed from the reaction, the higher the level of biophenols. The actual level of biophenols was determined by a comparative scale measuring how much colour was developed by known quantities of a standard phenol (either caffeic acid or garlic acid). Even when this method provided a reasonable indication, it was far from perfect as all different phenols react to the colorant in different ways. Furthermore, it did not tell us anything about the different groups of biophenols. As we know now, some of those biophenols have very specific health and sensory properties (i.e. Oleocanthal, which has important antinflammatory action and it is responsible for the pungent feeling on the back of the throat).
Even when there are no limit for polyphenols in international standards, they are very effective antioxidants in olive oil and contribute significantly to oxidative stability, shelf life and health claims. Given the growing importance of these antioxidants, a new and more precise measuring method has been developed. This method utilises High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC). High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) is a form of column chromatography that pumps a sample mixture or analyte (in this case EVOO) in a solvent (known as the mobile phase) at high pressure through a column with chromatographic packing material (stationary phase). The sample is carried by a moving carrier gas stream of helium or nitrogen. HPLC has the ability to separate, and identify compounds that are present in any sample that can be dissolved in a liquid in trace concentrations as low as parts per trillion. Sample retention time (the time that it takes for each biophenol to exit the column) will vary depending on the interaction between the stationary phase, the molecules being analyzed, and the solvent, or solvents used. As the sample passes through the column it interacts between the two phases at different rate, primarily due to different polarities in the analytes. Analytes that have the least amount of interaction with the stationary phase or the most amount of interaction with the mobile phase will exit the column faster. A detector at the point of exit determines when and how much of each biophenol is sensed. The total amount of biophenols in this method is determined by adding the individual quantities of each measured biophenol.

There are typically more than 20 different biophenols in extra virgin olive oil. The prevalent classes of hydrophilic phenols found in EVOO are phenolic alcohols and acids (i.e. Hydroxytyrosol and vanillic acid), flavonoids (i.e. luteonin), lignans (i.e. pinoresinol) and secoiridoids. Among these substances the last two classes include the most concentrate phenols of EVOO. Secoiridoids, like aglycone derivatives of oleuropein, demethyloleuropein and ligstroside, are present in olive fruit as most abundant EVOO phenolic antioxidants. Several important biological properties (antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, chemopreventive and anti-cancer) and the characteristic pungent and bitter tasty properties have been attributed to EVOO phenols.

Leandro Ravetti
Technical Director BOUNDARY BEND OLIVES

About Our Owner – Roni Hosfeld

At D’Olivo, our mission is quite simple – help people discover the many health benefits of ultra-premium olive oil and true balsamic vinegars so they can live a healthier, tastier lifestyle. Though our focus originally started with high-quality olive oils, over the years, we’ve procured a wide selection of holistic and local products that can help our customers achieve just that. On any given day, you can walk into our Walla Walla location and get lost on an informative yet delicious tasting tour, or simply browse around for some new, benefit-rich products that can help you work toward personal health goals. In this article, we’re going to share with you the story of our owner, Roni Hosfeld, and the amazing journey she made to bring the D’Olivo brand from its humble beginnings to where it is today.

Most people these days think of olive oil as nothing more than a kitchen ingredient used for cooking that can be bought at popular supermarkets. To Roni Hosfeld, this was very much her way of thinking as well, until one fateful trip to Colorado. An unexpected detour landed her in a small oil shop that opened her eyes to the world of olive oil for the very first time. Though Roni didn’t know it then, this brief experience would change her life and serve as the foundation for the D’Olivo brand.

Roni, who had been working in public service for over 20 years, let the idea of starting her own oil shop fall to the wayside as a pipe dream. However, in May of 2013, Roni received an exciting call that opened the door for D’Olivo. Jumping at the opportunity, in less than two months time, Roni had to design the store’s layout, order product, and essentially build the D’Olivo brand from the ground up while still continuing to work at a local winery. It was during this time that Roni stumbled across Veronica Foods, a leading distributor of ultra-premium olive oils around the world and the company we still source all of our oil from today.

In order to sell Veronica Foods olive oil, Roni had to go through a detailed background check and intensive training program, all of which she admits was more than worth it due to the unwavering quality of their oils. With product handled, she then undertook the momentous task of hiring staff members that would not only represent the D’Olivo brand, but love doing it. By still following her philosophy of training and equipping each employee with the tools and knowledge they need to do the job, all of our staff members play the role of both tour guide and teacher to every customer that walks through our doors.

For Roni, in addition to educating everyone she comes into contact with about the many health benefits of ultra-premium olive oils, she’s also constantly looking for new ways to meet the needs of the Walla Walla Valley community while staying true to the D’Olivo brand. This is ultimately what urged Roni to offer a new line of skin care products sourced directly from the Olive Oil Skin Care Company in Australia. Understanding that olive oil is also beneficial for the skin and hair, Roni wanted to continue offering customers more holistic products that would allow them to achieve their goals the natural, healthy way.

From the beginning, when she was still splitting her time between the store and a winery job, Roni was brainstorming countless ideas that she could use to help D’Olivo grow while building a continued relationship with customers. Using her experience in the wine industry, she decided that the best way to do this was to start the brand’s very own olive oil and vinegar club. Marking a big step forward, the club allows customers to subscribe and receive four quarterly shipments of olive oils and vinegars that they can handpick themselves.

With a constantly expanding inventory of delicious oils and vinegars, this is one of the best ways to experience all the D’Olivo brand has to offer. As a club member, you’ll have the luxury of tailoring your experience with three different levels that offer between two to four bottles of oil or vinegar each quarter. In addition to receiving the oils and vinegars of your choice, members can also enjoy a handpicked gift from Roni herself as an extra treat each quarter.

Today, Roni still works just as hard as she did when D’Olivo was first founded to ensure the brand reflects her passion and dedication to the products and customers. On any given day, you’ll find her greeting customers with a warm smile, striking up laughter filled conversations, and helping everyone find the perfect olive oils and vinegars. So, the next time you find yourself in Walla Walla Valley, be sure to stop by and have your eyes opened to the world of olive oil in very much the same way it was for our owner, Roni Hosfeld.

Fun Ways to Use Flavored Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar

As healthy as olive oil and balsamic vinegars can be for you, half of the fun is in finding exciting ways to use them in the kitchen. Because they come in so many different flavor varieties, there’s endless culinary possibilities that you can experiment with. At D’Olivo, we carry 36 varieties of olive oil and 40 types of balsamic vinegar that allow you to indulge your taste buds and ad fun twists to your favorite dishes. In this article, we’re going to share some of the best ways you can use flavored olive oils and balsamic vinegars to spice up meals and create fun snacks that everyone will enjoy. We also encourage you to check out our recipes section on the website for more specific ideas.

1. Make Soup Exciting Again

Whether making soup from a can or concocting your own from various ingredients, soup is a perfect dish to experiment with flavored olive oils. Due to its consistency, oils blend perfectly with soups, allowing the flavor profiles to disperse evenly and add a bold or subtle taste to each spoon full. Consider using our cayenne chili or cilantro & roasted onion olive oils in creamier soups to add more depth. For lighter soups, our Tuscan herb or lemon infused oils can work wonders.

2. Dynamic Pizza & Flatbreads

Looking for a way to spice up your favorite pizza dish? Balsamic vinegar is the perfect partner to nearly any flatbread. The thick consistency and dark color of balsamic vinegar contrasts nicely from lighter cheeses and ingredients often used on pizza and flatbreads, making them even more tantalizing. From a tasting standpoint, the salty nature of pizza entrees make them the ideal candidate for a touch of sweetness. Explore the different flavors we carry and indulge your taste buds with some new flatbread combinations the next time you’re enjoying a slice.

3. The New Way to Roast Vegetables

Roasting is a widely loved method of cooking that produces deliciously crisp and tender vegetables. Whether using a traditional oven or cooking on an open flame, try cooking with flavored oils rather than plain to discover entirely new vegetable dishes. As the vegetables roast in the oil, they will actually absorb some of the flavor and introduce you to exciting new tastes. Depending on the vegetables you’re using and the flavors you enjoy, browse our collection of oils to see which would pair best.

4. Balsamic Popcorn Creations

Are you the kind of foodie that loves to watch a good movie with a big bowl of hot, buttery popcorn in your lap? As great as popcorn is by itself, there are dozens of ways you can transform this tasty snack into something even better. The naturally salty flavor of popcorn makes it perfect for pairing with sweet and tangy balsamic vinegars. We have dozens of vinegars that are made from sweeter ingredients like peaches, chocolate, honey ginger, and plenty more. Pick your favorite flavor (or two) and simply drizzle it over the top of your popcorn to enjoy!

5. Ice Cream With a Funky Twist

This one is going to sound a little weird at first, but once you try it, you’ll never look at balsamic vinegar the same again. While salty sweet combinations are certainly delicious, there’s a lot to be said about sweet on sweet combinations as well! Load up a bowl of your favorite ice cream, chop up some fresh fruit if you’d like, and drizzle on a flavored balsamic vinegar of your choosing like chocolate syrup. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how well the flavors work together and may even start using it as a regular topping when you indulge in a late night treat.

6. Guilt-Free Kale Chips

Kale chips have been all the craze lately, serving as healthier alternatives to their addictive, higher calorie cousin, the potato chip. These light, crisp snacks are a match made in heaven for flavored olive oils, allowing you to experiment with hundreds of different recipes. Simply pick out your favorite flavor (or two if you want to experiment) and lightly toss the kale in oil until it’s coated and ready for the oven. Once cooked to a nice even crisp, you’ll find that the kale has absorbed a lot of the oil’s flavor, adding a welcome twist to your favorite snack food. Be sure to share this one with friends and family!

7. Yogurt for Champions

Yogurt is a wonderful snack food that can oftentimes serve as a blank canvas for experimentation. The tartness of balsamic vinegar and sweeter flavors of most yogurts marry perfectly when blended together. Simply adding a few drops of your favorite flavored balsamic vinegar and stirring it in will yield an incredibly tasty cup of yogurt. Depending on how you’re feeling, you’ll find that most flavored vinegars pair nicely with yogurt. Browse our collection now to begin exploring new ways you can spice up this healthy snack.

8. Never Buy Mayonnaise Again

If you’ve never made your own mayonnaise, it’s actually not all that hard and can be more cost effective than buying it from the store. While mayo already tastes great by itself, adding a little bit of your favorite flavored olive oil will produce an even more addictive condiment. Consider using selections like our California garlic or fernleaf dill oils to take your mayo to the next level and increase its versatility in dishes. Before you know it, you’ll find yourself putting it on everything you make!

Health Benefits of Balsamic Vinegar

After making a big splash in the culinary scene over the last few decades, balsamic vinegar has become a widely used and loved ingredient all around the world. From chefs using it in complex dishes to people taking it for the many holistic properties, balsamic vinegar is much more than your average kitchen ingredient. In this article, we’re going to first explore how balsamic vinegar is made before reviewing four of the most important health benefits this product offers.

What is Balsamic Vinegar?

Dating back over 1,000 years to Modena, Italy, where balsamic vinegar was originally used as a tonic and given to people importance as a token of honor, it has since become wildly popular around the world because of its distinctively bold flavor profiles and touch of sweetness. Though most often known for its use in salad dressings, balsamic vinegar can be used in everything from marinades to soups.

Classified as a wine vinegar (even though it’s not made from wine), balsamic vinegar is actually produced from sweet grape pressings before they’re given the chance to ferment into wine. After undergoing a transformative journey through the production process, balsamic vinegar becomes the darkly colored, concentrated syrup that we know it as today.

How is Balsamic Vinegar Made?

Similar to wine and other craft-intensive products, balsamic vinegar typically undergoes the same general production process. Where they differ is in the quality of the grapes used, types of aging barrels, and the amount of time aged. In fact, the amount of time aged is one of the biggest contributing factors to both taste and price. It’s for this reason that some traditional balsamic vinegars can go for as much as $250 an ounce, while others can be bought for as little as $5 for a 12-ounce bottle.

Traditional balsamic vinegar is made from Lambrusco or Trebbiano grape pressings which are sweet in flavor. Once the pressings are collected, they’re boiled down into a concentrated syrup and left to ferment naturally for a few weeks. Once the vinegar has fermented, it’s transferred into wooden barrels to begin the rest of the 12-year aging process. While this is the minimum amount of time for traditional balsamic vinegar, others may only be aged for a few months, or for as long as 100 years.

Throughout the aging process, the balsamic vinegar is transferred into barrels crafted from different wood so it can take on unique flavor profiles. Once the aging process is done and most of the liquid has evaporated, the final concentrated product undergoes inspection before being carefully bottled and prepared for enjoyment.

Health Benefits of Balsamic Vinegar

1. It’s a Healthy Alternative for Diabetics

Because diabetics have to watch the kinds of food they eat due to differing glycemic responses, it can greatly limit the choices they have both at home and at restaurants. Balsamic vinegar is classified as a low glycemic food and has actually been shown to help prevent blood sugar spikes after eating. One study found that insulin-resistant test subjects experienced blood sugar plateaus for as long as five hours after consuming balsamic vinegar with their meal.

This is great for those with diabetes because it adds a lot of flavor and only comes in at around 14 calories per tablespoon and less than 3 grams of carbohydrates. With just one or two servings of balsamic vinegar, you can enhance meals by adding a little diversity and help your body’s blood sugar response stay balanced from meal to meal.

2. It Can Help With Cholesterol Levels

With more and more people suffering from high cholesterol levels each year, a lot of the balsamic vinegar research has been focused on its cholesterol-fighting properties and ability to help people maintain healthy levels. The abundance of antioxidants, polyphenols, in particular, have been shown to inhibit LDL oxidation and prevent toxic cells from raising LDL levels. Though not enough to be a standalone treatment, balsamic vinegar has been recognized as a great addition to any efforts to reduce cholesterol.

Another study also found that balsamic vinegar may help reduce atherosclerosis risk factors when consumed on a regular basis because of its natural cholesterol lowering properties. As one of the leading factors that contribute to the development of atherosclerosis, balsamic vinegar is great for those that are more at risk or wanting to take preventative measures.

3. Digestive and Immune System Health

When you consume food, the job of digestion falls to the stomach acids and bacteria present in the gut. If your digestive system is in bad shape, not only will you have a harder time digesting foods, but you’ll also be depriving your body of all the nutrients due to decreased absorption. One of the main active compounds found in balsamic vinegar is acetic acid, which is known to contain probiotic strains that help keep your body’s digestive system in good health.

Because it can help to create a healthy environment for good bacteria in the gut, your immune system is also going to get a boost, better preparing it to fight off illnesses. Lastly, balsamic vinegar can also influence the activity of pepsin, an enzyme that helps with the breakdown of protein so it can be absorbed by the body easier.

4. Weight Loss Aid

Representing an industry that generates over $60 billion annually in the United States alone, weight loss is a popular topic of discussion. Vinegars have long been known for their weight loss properties, and balsamic vinegar offers its own unique benefits as well. The range of probiotic compounds present in balsamic vinegar can actually help with the feeling of fullness, preventing the urge to overeat at lunch or indulge in a late night snack.

It’s also worth mentioning that balsamic vinegar gives you the freedom to add more flavor to your meals without the use of high-calorie, unhealthy alternatives such as butter, mayonnaise, and animal fats. Experiment with different cuisines and dishes to find exciting ways to incorporate it into your meals and help you reach your weight loss goals.

Shop our variety of balsamic vinegars online today.

The True Story of Our Olive Oil

Here at D’Olivo, we believe in bringing our customers the best olive oils from around the world. As experts in the field with years of experience, not only do we enjoy spreading the many health benefits of olive oil, but we also like to share with customers exactly how our olive oil is made. In this article, we’re going to take you through the amazing journey our olive oils embark on before they reach our store, and, ultimately, your kitchen.

How Olive Oil is Made

Olive oil has been around for thousands of years, originating in the Mediterranean region where the exquisite flavors and beneficial properties of the olive fruit were first realized. Now having spread to nearly every country in the world, olive oils come in an impressive range of varieties that offer unique characteristics depending on where they were grown and the processes farmers to use to harvest and produce the oil.

Part of what makes olive oil so special is the tree itself, which can take anywhere from 3-10 years to begin producing harvest worthy olives (as decided by each individual grower). Due to varying growing conditions and the time at which growers decide to harvest, different flavor profiles will be present which help add to the exciting experience of tasting different oils from around the world.

In addition to the maturity of the olive tree itself, growers must carefully tend to them to ensure each tree grows to yield the maximum amount of fruit. Believe it or not, it can take as much as 10 pounds of olives to produce just one liter of olive oil! Once the olives have grown, they must be harvested at just the right time (usually within 2-3 weeks of their prime) to maintain the most flavor and nutrient density.

If olives are harvested too early or too late, many of the beneficial properties will begin to diminish, as well as the robust flavor profiles. For this reason, at D’Olivo, we source all of our olive oil from Veronica Foods. Their world-class production process and unrivaled quality control adhere to strict guidelines and regular testing to ensure customers get nothing but the finest, highest quality product. By growing their own olives and working with mills that have the same passion about olive oil, they’re able to guarantee an ultra premium consistency.

Once the olives are ripe for harvesting, growers have the option of either handpicking or using a machine to shake them down from the trees. Similar to softer fruits, care needs to be taken when it’s time to harvest because bruising the olives can cause the loss of beneficial properties by triggering oxidation and fermentation. This is why with certain brands of olive oil, the bottles will be labeled as either “tree” or “ground” depending on whether or not the olives used to make the oil were found at the base of the tree.

After harvesting, the olives are then carefully washed and prepared for crushing by removing the stem and leaves. This part of the process is what determines if olive oil is extra virgin or not. For it to be considered extra virgin, the olives must be crushed via mechanical means rather than chemicals and heat that serve to refine the extracted oil. Much like fresh fruit juice, once the olive oil has been crushed, it’s typically run through a centrifuge to separate water and sentiment from the oil before bottling.

For olive oil to be considered “extra virgin”, not only does it need to have an acidity level of 0.8 or below, but it then must go through a series of chemical requirements and tests as set forth by organizations such as the North American Olive Oil Association (NAOOA), International Olive Council (IOC), and even regional governing bodies to name a few. Only after passing this rigorous testing phase can olive oil be deemed extra virgin.

Once the oil is bottled, it then gets shipped following further requirements to ensure it maintains its taste and nutrients. Because extra virgin olive oil is so fresh, the different flavors from region to region really stand out and serve as one of the reasons olive oil tasting is so exciting!

What is Ultra Premium Olive Oil?

The ultra premium category was created to distinguish the highest quality olive oils in the world from the increasing amount of fake olive oil that is flooding markets in nearly every country. It’s been the lack of testing and regulation by agencies and government bodies around the world have only helped to increase the number of fake olive oils that are available. In fact, some sources believe it’s safe to assume that as much as 80% of the Italian olive oil available is fake, having been bottled and sold as authentic extra virgin olive oil to foreign markets, the United States included.

The ultra premium olive oil that we source from Veronica Foods focuses on the when, what, and how of olive oil rather than the where. Understanding that the highest quality olive oil comes from the highest quality fruit and production processes, Veronica Foods puts all of their olive oil through an intensive inspection that encompasses both the production process and the end-product to ensure it adheres to the ultra premium standards they’ve set forth.

Our D’Olivo Passion

At D’Olivo, we strive and work to overcome the negative spotlight that has been placed on the olive oil industry in recent years by faulty organizations and incorrect labeling. As such, we are proud to be the exclusive carriers of Veronica Foods olive oil in the Walla Walla area. Having been founded in 1924, Veronica Foods has since become world-renowned for producing some of the highest quality olive oil found anywhere from their olive grove and hand selected mills that meet their ultra premium standards. It’s their impeccable attention to detail and rigorous testing standards that set them apart so they can further spread the benefits of authentic extra virgin and ultra premium olive oils.

The Benefits of Olive Oil in Skin Care

Do your hair, skin, and nails look their best? While it’s often easy to get lost talking about the countless health benefits olive oil carries for the body internally, it can be just as helpful when used externally. Whether you have hair that’s lost its lustrous shine, nails and cuticles that could use some work, or skin that’s starting to feel dry and lack radiance, olive oil and its unique, nutrient dense properties can work wonders for skin health.

In this article, we’re going to explore the various ways that olive oil can help the skin, as well as how you can use it on a daily basis to ensure you’re looking your best.

How Olive Oil Helps The Skin

Even though it’s most commonly found in the kitchen and used for cooking, the holistic properties of olive oil extend far beyond culinary purposes. In fact, olive oil has been used for skin care since the ancient times to help the hair and skin appear more healthy. Below, we’ve covered the top scientifically backed benefits of using olive oil externally.

Antioxidant Protection

Just as your body has an immune system that protects you from viruses and illnesses that you’re exposed to, the skin also needs a protective layer to not only ensure it’s looking its best, but to guard you against harmful ultraviolet radiation. Of all the antioxidants that olive oil is packed with, the big three are vitamin E, polyphenols, and phytosterols.

Due to the high concentration of these nutrients, studies have found that when olive oil is applied topically to the skin (particularly vitamin E), it can help to revitalize smoothness and protect you from the harmful effects of UV light. It’s because of these powerful skin care benefits that olive oil is often hailed as one of the best products to prevent premature aging.

Outside of direct beauty effects, olive oil also helps protect you from developing skin cancer. While it’s certainly no replacement for sunscreen if you’re going to be enjoying a day at the beach, hydroxytyrosol, a rare phytochemical with powerful antioxidant properties, has been shown to protect the skin from free radical damage.

It Moisturizes the Skin

If you’ve been the victim of dry skin, then you already know how frustrating it can be to treat. The most common culprits of dryness are hot and cold climates that can actually suck moisture away, reducing the skins luminous appearance. Worse yet, while many popular commercial moisturizers may help your skin feel better in the short term, a lot of them actually clog pores and make skin problems worse over time.

Olive oil serves as a nutrient rich cocktail for the skin, penetrating deeply while nourishing and cleansing the different layers as it sinks in. This not only provides your skin with the various nutrients it needs to look its best, but it also allows it to breathe. Together, these two benefits help heal the skin over time rather than offer a short-term solution.

Lastly, because olive oil is rich in linoleic acid, a fatty acid that cannot be produced by the body, as well as sebum, a protective substance that’s formed from a mixture of natural oils, it can help prevent water evaporation from the surface of your skin. Together, these two substances create a protective layer over the skin so you can enjoy more of the outdoors without worrying about dry, cracked skin as a consequence.

It Keeps Your Hair Healthy

Having been used for thousands of years to help increase shine, volume, and softness, olive oil can work wonders for your hair. One of the top reasons olive oil works so well with hair is because it’s packed with emollients like oleic acid, palmitic acid, and squalene. These natural nutrients act as softening agents and are even replicated in many commercial conditioners.

In addition to making your hair feel softer, the moisturizing effect of olive oil is also thought to strengthen the hair by replenishing the scalp with the nutrients it needs to produce healthy hair. In fact, vitamin E has been shown to help prevent hair loss by reducing the natural oxidative stress that the scalp experiences from day to day.

How to Use Olive Oil For Skin Health

Now that we’ve covered the benefits you can reap from olive oil when used externally, let’s talk about the different ways you can use it to enjoy the radiant skin you deserve.

1. Use it as a Pre-Shampoo Treatment

Due to its moisturizing properties and rich abundance of vitamin E, olive oil can help to prevent split ends, nourish the scalp, and make your hair easier to manage. To utilize it as a pre-shampoo treatment, simply work a small amount into your hair 20 minutes prior to washing. When done, enjoy softer hair with more radiant shine.

2. Use it to Remove Makeup

Believe it or not, common makeup removers can actually be harmful to the skin, drying it out and destroying precious nutrients that are present on the surface. Olive oil is a great alternative because oil naturally grabs onto other oil-based products and can gently remove makeup from the face without causing damage.

3. Good for Cuticle Health & Nail Growth

Olive oil helps prevent the cuticles from drying out and cracking (leading to them growing back thicker and more pronounced). This makes them easier to manage and prevents the growth of bacteria by providing the nails with everything they need to grow beautiful and strong. Simply apply a drop to each nail and massage it in before bed for the best results.

4. Acts as an Anti-Inflammatory

If you’re experiencing irritated or inflamed skin, olive oil has long been known for its anti-inflammatory properties. This is perfect if you have dry or itchy skin as well, helping to nourish the irritated area with much needed nutrients the natural way without harsh OTC medications. Gently apply a small amount of olive oil over the affected area and let it work it’s magic!

The Truth About Cooking With Olive Oil

Cooking oil has been around for thousands of years, tracing all the way back to when man first discovered fire. Whether used as a simple salad dressing or for adding some crunchy goodness to your favorite cuisines, cooking oil has become a kitchen staple. Now, as great as oils are for adding some culinary diversity to your diet, if you’re not using the right kind, you can actually end up doing your body more harm than good.

Without knowing why certain oils are better for you than others, a simple trip to the grocery store can quickly become a scavenger hunt for the product that provides you with the best value. In this article, we’re going to explore in-depth the many health benefits of cooking with olive oil as opposed to other popular alternatives such as canola and soybean oil.

Dangers of Cooking With the Wrong Oil

Though many cooking oils can appear to look the same, the important differentiator is their fat content. While we will go more into detail in the next section, the types of fat molecules that an oil consists of will ultimately affect its stability and heat resistance. This is why different oils start to smoke at different temperatures, also known as their smoke point.

When fats and oils are exposed to heat, their molecular structure can actually become damaged and lead to the creation of harmful compounds like aldehydes and lipid peroxides, both of which have been linked to cancer development. This is most commonly observed in vegetable oils like canola and soybean due to their high concentration of polyunsaturated fats.

Furthermore, when oils high in polyunsaturated fat become heated to their smoke point, the fats begin to breakdown and vaporize, creating harmful fumes that have been shown to contribute to the development of lung cancer.

Understanding the Different Types of Fat

Saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated are the three types of fat that can be found in cooking oils. Depending on the kind of cooking oil you buy, the concentrations of each will vary. The important differentiator between the three is the existence of double bonds which are susceptible to heat, serving as the precursors to many of the carcinogenic compounds formed during the cooking process.

Saturated fats (coconut oil) have zero double bonds, monounsaturated fats (olive oil) have just one double bond, and polyunsaturated fats (vegetable oil) have multiple double bonds. The breakdown occurs during the cooking process when heat causes double bonds to react with oxygen. However, even though monounsaturated fats possess a double bond, studies have actually found that they’re resistant to heat-induced degradation as opposed to polyunsaturated fats which have the highest rates of oxidation when cooked with.

Why Olive Oil is the Best to Cook With

Even though saturated fats offer the best resistance to oxidation due to their lack of double bonds, high intake of this kind of fat has been shown to increase your risk of heart disease or stroke. Olive oil, extra virgin in particular, is well-known for being healthier than other cooking oil alternatives due to its high concentration of monounsaturated fats and antioxidants. In fact, one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil on average consists of 75% monounsaturated fat, 13% saturated fat, and just 12% polyunsaturated fat.

Extra virgin olive oil is obtained from the first press of olives, allowing it to retain many of the natural bioactive compounds and antioxidants. It’s the antioxidant rich nature of extra virgin olive oil that allows it to protect itself, as well as your body once consumed, from oxidative damage during the cooking process.

To further support this claim, a study was conducted with various cooking oils to observe the level of oxidation each undergoes when exposed to deep frying temperatures. After 24 hours, of all the oils tested, extra virgin olive oil was found to resist oxidation the most, surprisingly retaining the majority of its beneficial properties.

Different Olive Oil Cooking Methods

While extra virgin olive oil is the best of the cooking oils, its health benefits can vary depending on the cooking method you use.

Deep Frying

Surprisingly, deep frying is the method of cooking that allows olive oil to retain the highest levels of bioactive compounds and beneficial properties, even after multiple rounds of use. Generally, you want to keep fried foods to a minimum, but if you’re going to indulge, olive oil is the way to go. Thanks to the abundance of antioxidants in olive oil, it’s been found that deep fried foods actually become enriched with the oil’s phenols.

Pan Frying

Pan frying is by far one of the most popular cooking methods in which oils are used. Though the olive oil does not retain as many of its beneficial properties as it would if used for deep frying (likely due to an oxygen rich atmosphere), it still is shown to degrade the slowest of all the oils and enrich cooked foods with antioxidants.

Roasting

Roasting is another popular cooking method in which oil can be used to help give food a deliciously crisp crust. Of the oils you can cook with, once again, extra virgin olive oil has been found to resist oxidation the best due to its tocopherol concentration.

Closing Words

Hopefully, by now, you should be a cooking oil expert! Whether you’ve been using olive oil for years or you’re finally deciding to make the switch, it’s never too late to begin reaping the numerous health benefits this powerful natural product has to offer.

At D’Olivo, we understand the numerous health benefits of olive oil, which is why we’re so passionate about spreading its holistic (and delicious) properties to as many people as we can. If you haven’t already, take a look at our selection of ultra premium extra virgin olive oils and begin cooking the healthy way!

5 Proven Health Benefits of Olive Oil

Contrary to popular fitness trends that tend to pin dietary fat as public enemy number one, olive oil has been incorporated into diets for thousands of years and stands today as one of the few sources of fat that’s considered healthy. Whether using it for cooking, salad dressings, or a number of other culinary purposes, olive oil goes far beyond a simple pantry product.

In this article, though olive oil carries dozens of beneficial properties, we’re going to explore the 5 most scientifically backed health benefits. Before we get started, let’s first gain a better understanding of what olive oil is.

What is Olive Oil?
Simply put, olive oil is the natural extract that comes from olives. To obtain this extract, olives can be processed a number of different ways, which also determines whether the final product is considered refined or unrefined.

Unrefined olive oil, also known as extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), is the least processed. This allows the olive oil to retain the majority of its vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory properties, giving the final product a darker appearance and more robust flavor profiles.

Refined olive oil is processed to a higher degree and can even be blended with a variety of other oils from different regions to get the final product. The extra processing removes many of the beneficial properties from the oil, resulting in a lighter appearance and little to no flavor.

While both forms of olive oil are considered healthy for you, extra virgin olive oil carries the most benefits, which is why at D’Olivo, we pride ourselves on carrying the highest quality ultra-premium EVOOs.

5 Health Benefits of Olive Oil
1. High Concentration of Antioxidants
These well known substances have long been loved for their free radical fighting properties. Antioxidants work by preventing the oxidation of cells and helping with blood cholesterol, both of which are leading heart disease risk factors.

Outside of benefiting overall heart health, antioxidants have also been shown to help with the prevention of other diseases as well. Though more research still needs to be conducted, the results have led researchers to believe that olive oil may help with atherosclerosis or even cancer thanks to the anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties of olive oil.

2. Weight Loss Aid
Many of the existing weight loss programs encourage participants to shy away from foods that are high in fat. Not only is this train of thought untrue, but olive oil has actually been shown to help with weight loss in controlled study groups. Over the course of a 3-year study, the participants consumed a diet rich in virgin olive oil and enjoyed a number of benefits, decreased weight gain being one of them.

To aid with your weight loss efforts, consider incorporating extra virgin olive oil into your diet routine. Of all the macronutrients, fats contain the highest number of calories per gram and also digest the slowest. These two factors can help you feel full for a longer period of time, reducing cravings for snacks and junk food.

3. Monounsaturated Fats & Inflammation
Olive oil is rich in oleic acid, a healthy monounsaturated fat which has been shown to help reduce inflammation in the body. Though inflammation is a natural response, when the body experiences chronic inflammation, studies have shown that it becomes more susceptible to developing a range of different diseases.

Additionally, the high levels of oleic acid present in olive oil may have beneficial effects on cancer causing genes. Further studies have looked into its role relating to breast cancer specifically, showing promising results.

4. Cancer Fighting Properties
As one of the leading causes of death in the world, some of the best precautionary measures you can take to prevent cancer are dietary. Inhabitants of the Mediterranean region are found to have lower incidences of certain cancers, which researchers believe could be related to the high intake of olive oil in their diets.

The antioxidants present in olive oil not only help to prevent inflammation, but they also reduce cellular proliferation, which is believed to be one of the leading causes of cancer. Furthermore, in non-human studies, evidence continues to mount, showing that olive oil can actually help fight cancer cells.

5. Hair & Skin Health
We’ve talked a lot about the health benefits of olive oil for the body internally, but what about externally? Aside from being used for cooking and dietary purposes, olive oil can also be found in many cosmetic products for your hair and skin.

The high fat content and beneficial compounds that are present in olive oil are great for keeping your skin and hair moisturized. To do so, consider using some as a conditioner to strengthen your hair while keeping it soft and easy to manage. One study has also found that you can also use it directly on the skin to keep it nourished and rich with antioxidants.

Rather than backing this claim up with another scientific study, try it out for yourself with our exclusive line of olive oil based skin care products and see why so many of our customers use them to look their best.

Final Words
Though we’ve only just scratched the surface of olive oil health benefits, hopefully this article helps to shed some light on the power of this common, natural kitchen product. While there’s still plenty of research to be done on olive oil, many studies are continuing to discover the extent of its holistic properties every year.

At D’Olivo, we understand just how healthy and delicious olive oil can be, which is why we’ve made it our mission to share it with as many people as we can. Browse through our extensive line of ultra premium extra virgin olive oils and skin care products to begin incorporating this powerful oil into your daily routine and living a healthier lifestyle.

D’Olivo Tasting Bar Now Open

What is D’Olivo Tasting Bar, and do you know it’s OPEN for business?

At D’Olivo tasting bar 10 E Main, you can sample extra virgin olive oils and aged balsamic vinegars from Modena, Italy freshly bottled on site from large stainless steel urns called Fusti. Our award-winning Ultra-Premium Olive Oils exceed world standards for olive oil quality. It is the freshest and finest olive oil in the world today.

Find your preference among various source countries including Chile, Italy, Spain, Australia, Greece and more. Our knowledgeable, trained tasting consultants can assist you to determine the best olive oils and vinegars based on your taste preference, food preferences and typical cooking styles.