Extra virgin olive oil is an essential and typical part of the Mediterranean diet. From a nutritional point of view, for the characteristics of its chemical composition, the extra virgin olive oil is considered a food of high quality.
The Ce Reg 1531/2001 of the Council of 23 July 2001, establishes the descriptions and definitions of olive oils and olive-pomace oils, in force since 1 November 2003.
Virgin Olive Oil
This olive oil is obtained only by the pressing of the olives.
Obtained from the fruit of the olive tree solely by mechanical or other physical means under conditions that do not lead to alterations in the oil, which have not undergone any treatment other than washing, decantation, centrifugation or filtration, to the exclusion of oils obtained using solvents or using adjuvants having a chemical or biochemical action, or re-esterification processes and of any mixture with oils of other kinds.
Virgin olive oils are exclusively classified and denominations that follow:
- Extra virgin olive oil, having a free acidity, expressed as oleic acid of not more than 0.8 grams per 100 grams and its other characteristics correspond to those fixed for this category; Free acidity max 0.8%
- Virgin olive oil, having a free acidity, expressed as oleic acid of not more than 2 grams per 100 grams and its other characteristics correspond to those fixed for this category; Free acidity max 2.0%
- Virgin olive oil shining, having a free acidity, expressed as oleic acid, greater than 2 grams per 100 grams and its other characteristics correspond to those fixed for this category. Free acidity more than 2.0%.
With these clarifications due, we come to its many advantages
- The extra virgin olive oil concerned halfway between food and medicine, it is rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, also known as essential fatty acids, which are are contained in optimal proportions (similar to those of breast milk).
- Extra virgin olive oil raw = no contraindication.
- Rich in Vitamin E, A, K, D protective powerful antioxidants and the effect on our cells.
- It is easily metabolizable limits the processes of plasma cholesterol biosynthesis reduces the cholesterol “bad” LDL cholesterol and increasing “good” HDL; promotes pancreatic secretion.
- On the contrary seed oil, extra virgin olive oil prevails oleic acid, monounsaturated fatty acid.
From a nutritional point of view this is a matter of primary importance, because unlike the polyunsaturated fatty acids present in seed oils, oleic acid protects membrane lipids from oxidation and thus decreases the risk oncogenic and coronary exposure to inflammatory diseases, arteriosclerosis, the liver, the biliary lithiasis and slows cell aging.
It is very useful for the elderly, in atonic constipation, and in bone mineralization, thus helping to correct osteoporosis.
It’s also useful:
- in the prevention of gastroduodenal ulcer;
- in the stimulation of the exocrine secretion of the pancreas;
- in promoting bile secretion and emptying of the gallbladder;
- in facilitating the digestion and absorption of fats and protein foods;
- in activating the intestinal peristalsis;
- in promoting the excretion of bile salts and cholesterol in the liver and their removal from the small intestine.
- A teaspoon of standard sizes of Extra virgin olive oil has 45 calories, while one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil standard has 108 calories.