Since the earliest years, olive oil has been key elements of Mediterranean cuisine. From research on the usage of olive oil as dietary purpose, it has been shown that it reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Olive oil has also being in use in ancient Greece by the likes of Hippocrates, for medicinal purposes. Olive oil is rich mono-saturated fatty acid – a fatty acid that is not stored as fat tissue in the body because it does not contain carbohydrates and minimal hydrogenated fat. Mono-saturated fatty acid is a fatty acid that is beneficial to the heart and cardiovascular system. It contains high level of phenolic – a healthy acid. It also contains vitamins E and K which are good for the skin. Olive oil has powerful antibiotic and antibacterial properties which make up great antibody.
What is virgin olive oil?
Virgin olive oil is often confused to mean pure olive oil. In the actual sense, it refer to the process by which olive oil made. Virgin olive oil qualities is a determinant of what it is used for. The best quality of virgin olive oil has superior flavor and durability because it is cold pressed (not heated above 86 degrees Fahrenheit). The lowest quality of virgin olive is used in soap making, not to be consumed.
Statistics has shown that 69% of virgin olive oil sold in United States are fake. This is as a result of oil manufacturers making false claims on the quality of their olive oil products.
How to avoid fake virgin olive oil?
Fake olive oil can be a combination of different qualities of olive oil or a combination of different oils. It could be an addition of virgin olive oil, sunflower oil or soybean oil and additives like chlorophyll or beta carotene. Determining the quality of an olive oil product is not as easy as it may seem. However, a layman way of testing the genuine virgin olive oil is by refrigerating it. It is not olive oil if does not solidifies but if it does, it is most likely olive oil.
One good way avoid buying fake olive oil is by buying from a local farmer who knows his or her product very well and can account for it. You should also look for 3rd party quality certification which has been made possible and available by the tough accreditation program by the California Olive Oil Council and the Australian Olive Association.
A certain study has faulted the claims of the following brands of olive oil:
Before purchasing Italian olive oil, you should check for the PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) or PGI (Protected Geographical Indication) labelling.