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Olive oil has been shown to improve lipid profile. This is one of the reasons why the "Mediterranean diet" is so popular among many health experts.
Effect of Olive Oil on Lipid Disorders
Olive oil, especially extra virgin olive oil, is a rich source of monounsaturated fats ("healthy fats") and antioxidants (polyphenols), both of which are believed to help improve lipid profile.
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Research Evidence on Olive Oil
Olive oil is known to improve cholesterol profile. Up until recently, it has been thought that the monounsaturated fats in olive oil are its primary active ingredients. However, some evidence hints that polyphenols (antioxidants) in olive oil (particularly, virgin olive oil) may play a positive role as well.239
How to Use Olive Oil
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) has more polyphenols than more processed varieties. Increasing your intake of olive oil is simple and delicious. Use it as one of your main cooking oils, drizzle it over salads and vegetables, and use it to make salad dressings and marinades.
Types of Professionals That Would Be Involved with This Treatment
- Naturopathic doctor
- Nutritionist or dietitian
- Integrative MD
- Therapeutic or natural chef
Olive oil is generally regarded as a very safe food.
Interactions you should know about:
- Diabetes and anti-diabetes drugs: Olive oil may lower blood sugar. Be aware of this if you are a diabetic, especially if you are on blood-sugar lowering medications.240
- Low blood pressure (hypotension) and anti-hypertensive drugs: Olive oil may lower blood pressure. Be aware of this if you have low blood pressure or if you are are on anti-hypertensive drugs to control high blood pressure.240
- Covas MI, Nyyssonen K, Poulsen HE, et al. The effect of polyphenols in olive oil on heart disease risk factors: a randomized trial. Ann Intern Med. 2006;145:333-341.
- WebMD. "Vitamins & Supplements: Olive." Accessed February 8, 2011: http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-233-OLIVE.aspx?activeIngredientId=233&activeIngredientName=OLIVE
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