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The Benefits of Olive Oil

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Everyone at Better-Biking.com loves olive oil.  But, not just any olive oil, though.  We love Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO).  It is our favorite.

Greek legend has it that the olive tree was a gift from the goddess Athena to humanity.  The Greek poet Homer referred to olive oil as liquid gold.  Thomas Jefferson proclaimed it the richest gift of heaven.  We agree!

Colavita EVOO is light, has a clear amber color, and a pleasantly subtle taste and fragrance.  It is the perfect flavor compliment when tossed with freshly-cooked Colavita pasta or lightly basted on grilling chicken breasts and baking vegetables.  In addition to its culinary qualities, Colavita EVOO has a wide variety of uses and benefits. Here are just a few:

According to Donald Hendsrud, M.D., from the Mayo Clinic, “The main type of fat found in all kinds of olive oil is monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs). MUFAs are actually considered a healthy dietary fat. If your diet emphasizes unsaturated fats, such as MUFAs and polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs), instead of saturated fats and trans fats, you may gain certain health benefits. MUFAs and PUFAs may help lower your risk of heart disease by improving related risk factors. For instance, MUFAs may lower your total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels. MUFAs may also help normalize blood clotting. And some research shows that MUFAs may also benefit insulin levels and blood sugar control, which can be especially helpful if you have type 2 diabetes.”

NPR recently reported that a new study from Johns Hopkins University published in JAMA Internal Medicine has linked “consumption of olive oil and nuts to improved survival from prostate cancer.  Researchers studied the fat intake of more than 4,500 men who had been diagnosed with non-metastatic prostate cancer (this is cancer that’s still confined to the prostate gland and has not spread to another place in the body). It turns out that men who replaced 10 percent of their total daily calories from carbohydrates (such as rice, bread and sweets) with vegetable fats (such as olive oil and canola) after their cancer diagnosis had a 29 percent lower risk of developing lethal prostate cancer and a 26 percent reduced risk of death during a median of eight years of follow-up.”

A recent story on CNN.com revealed that “olive oil beauty products are a multibillion dollar business, according to the industry website Olive Oil Source. “What many consumers don’t realize is something that people living millennia ago in ancient Greece took for granted; that extra virgin olive oil, all by itself, is one of the best beauty secrets,” the site says. The same antioxidants that heal your internal cells may help protect your outer layer from damage. Olive oil can now be found in everything from skin moisturizers to nail care kits.  If you’re not ready to spring for the professional products, you can use olive oil at home to create a hair mask or as a cheap eye makeup remover.”

The same story on CNN.com also reported that olive oil “helps more than your heart. Olive oil is full of polyphenols, a type of antioxidant that helps protect your cells from damage. Certain polyphenols also have anti-inflammatory properties.  Scientists have been exploring the effects these polyphenols may have on bone and digestive health as well as looking into how they could help prevent cancer. Other researchers are looking into olive oil’s potential for improving cognitive function and memory.”

The website www.colavita.com provides lots of information about EVOO and its benefits.  Our research revealed that there are thousands of uses for oilve oil.  Our favorite: Add a new dimension to ordinary wrestling matches – In Turkey, a 600-year-old tradition involves grown men wrestling while covered in olive oil.  Who knew?

 

About The Author

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Aaron Hanson (a.k.a The Cap’n) is manager of the Southern California Colavita Regional Amateur Team.  A 25-year veteran of the sport and lifestyle of cycling, Aaron has raced both road and mountain bikes, advocated for bicycle transportation funding and facilities at the city, county, state, and federal levels, planned and facilitated numerous bicycle events, and helped several municipalities and counties create viable bikeway master plans.

Aaron has been honored by IMBA, CORBA, Clif Bar, the City of Los Angeles, the County of Ventura, the City of Simi Valley, the United States House of Representatives, and the United States Senate for his bicycle advocacy work.  He has even won a bike race or two.

Aaron can be contacted via e-mail at: bikinguy@sbcglobal.net

 

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