Extra virgin olive oil is the holy grail of healthy food. If there is a fatty food that you can eat without guilt, it’s extra virgin olive oil. Pretty much everyone agrees that it’s good for your health, and a lot of studies have established its benefits. The main virtues of olive are its positive effects on the liver and the heart.
Reverses signs of fatty liver disease
Extra-virgin Olive oil contains a compound called hydroxytyrosol. It’s well known for its antioxidant properties. But, a group of researchers found out that it also reverses the negative effects of fatty liver disease.
A high-fat diet decreases the activity of beneficial enzymes in the liver which lower “bad” cholesterol levels and improve heart and brain health.
In the study, researchers fed 4 groups of mice with either a high-fat diet or a regular diet. Some mice on the high-fat diet were also supplemented with hydroxytyrosol. After 12 weeks, they analyzed the results of these diets on the mice.
Researchers found that the mice fed a high-fat diet and hydroxytyrosol showed less negative effects on the liver than the ones who didn’t receive the compound. More importantly, researchers found that the enzyme activity in the mice supplemented with hydroxytyrosol was similar to the mice that were fed a normal diet.
This suggests that hydroxytyrosol, the compound found in olive oil, may have reversed the damaging effects of the high-fat diet on the liver.
Reduces The Risks of Heart Disease
Multiple studies have shown the benefit of olive oil for the heart. By lowering high blood pressure and chronic inflammation, olive oil, especially the extra virgin variety, protects the heart and reduces the risks of heart disease.
A research by PREDIMED shows that extra virgin olive oil consumption is associated with reduced risks of cardiovascular disease and mortality in individuals at high cardiovascular risk.
The study included 7200 individuals with high cardiovascular risks. Participants supplemented with olive oil showed 35% heart disease risk reduction.