Plus a LOT of other health benefits from this high-fat superfood!
By: Cat Ebeling
Co-author of the best-sellers: The Fat Burning Kitchen, The Top 101 Foods that Fight Aging & The Diabetes Fix
This ONE Low Carb Snack Can Save Your Life, Prevent Alzheimer’s, Help You Lose Weight AND Look Younger!
You’ve seen them on every relish tray, in garnishes, in salads, and Italian and Greek dishes, and of course, the martini! I am talking about the ubiquitous olive—both green and black olives. While their oil seems to get all the attention, olives themselves are an awesome snack!
What’s so special about these oft overlooked little globes?
Olives contain all the same healthy fats that olive oil has. In fact, about 80% of the olive is in the form of healthy high oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid. The same, of course that is in olive oil. This monounsaturated fat is anti-inflammatory and low glycemic making them an extremely healthy, low carb snack option.
Olives’ large collection of antioxidants not only help fight disease, but they also actually fight cancer, heart disease, weight gain, diabetes and help reverse aging! Olives even help boost blood levels of the powerful anti-aging substance, glutathione, which is one of the body’s most important antioxidant nutrients because of ability to recycle antioxidants. And they are the perfect Keto/low glycemic snack!
Olives come in green and black and if you’ve ever seen an olive bar at the grocery store, you will realize there are actually many, many different varieties of olives—all with varying levels of antioxidants—but all are rich in health benefits!
We already know that people who use olive oil regularly, especially in place of other fats, have much lower rates of heart disease, but did you know they also have lower rates of atherosclerosis, diabetes, colon cancer, and asthma? Those same health benefits of olive oil transfer easily to olives themselves.
Let’s dive in and take a look at some of the fantastic health benefits of olives:
Prevents Oxidation of LDL
Studies on olive oil and atherosclerosis reveal that the particles of LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) in the body, that contain the monounsaturated fats of olive oil are less likely to become oxidized. Since it is the oxidized cholesterol that is harmful and sticks to blood vessel walls, we know that the oxidation is what we want to avoid.
Significantly Improves Lipid Panel
A study published in the Medical Science Monitor reported that 2 tablespoons a day of olive oil added to an otherwise unchanged diet in 28 outpatients, ranging in age from 64 to 71, resulted in major drops in total, and LDL cholesterol. Plus, subject’s ratio of HDL:LDL greatly improved; they ended up with higher amounts of protective HDL in relationship to the lowered amounts of dangerous LDL cholesterol.
Olives and olive oil also contain heart-healthy antioxidants, including chlorophyll, carotenoids and other compounds tyrosol, hydrotyrosol and oleuropein.
Reduces Inflammation in Blood Vessels—Lowers Blood Pressure
By reducing both inflammation and free radical damage to cholesterol, olives protect the the lining of our blood vessels, helping to maintain their ability to relax and dilate—which helps prevent high blood pressure.
Prevents Alzheimer’s Disease
And in a new, highly significant study, published just last June, 2017, in the Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology, researchers showed that the extra virgin olive oil which you can easily get straight from olives, actually protects memory and learning ability, and reduces the formation of the amyloid-beta plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain—which are the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease. One of the researchers in the study stated, [the] “One thing that stood out immediately was synaptic integrity,” the connections between neurons, known as synapses, are preserved in the animals on the extra-virgin olive oil diet. In addition, compared to mice on a regular diet, brain cells from animals in the olive oil group showed a dramatic increase in nerve cell autophagy activation, which was ultimately responsible for the reduction in levels of amyloid plaques and phosphorylated tau.
Helps prevent Breast Cancer
Olive oil may be the key reason that the Mediterranean diet reduces breast cancer risk, suggests a laboratory study published in the Annals of Oncology. Oleic acid, the main monounsaturated fatty acid in olives and olive oil, has been shown to reduce the expression of the Her-2/neu oncogene, which is associated with the aggressive growth of breast cancer tumors. High levels of Her-2/neu are found in one-fifth of breast cancers, especially those that are resistant to treatment. And when combined with Herceptin, a common drug used to treat breast cancer, it was found that oleic acid enhanced the effectiveness of the drug, dropping Her-2/neu expression as much as 70%, and lessened the necessary dosage of the chemotherapy drug as well. The end result: oleic acid promoted the apoptotic cell death (suicide) of aggressive, treatment resistant breast cancer.
Prevents diabetes, controls blood sugar
Studies in diabetic patients have shown that eating olives or olive oil helped to lower overall blood glucose levels. And—a lower glycemic diet with plenty of olives and olive oil helps to lower triglycerides, a key component in heart disease. Belly fat associated with insulin resistance leads to weight gain and type 2 diabetes, and olives are one food shown time and time again to help fight this.
Speaking of diabetes, did you know that 80% of people that have prediabetes don’t even know it? And that an estimated 84 MILLION americans have prediabetes, while over 30 million Americans have type 2 diabetes. But if you have prediabetes OR type 2 diabetes, they are both 100% reversible with these techniques, which also fights belly fat.
Regular use of olive oil has been associated with lower rates of asthma and rheumatoid arthritis, because the monounsaturated fats in olive oil help the body produce anti-inflammatory substances. By reducing inflammation, these fats can help reduce the severity of arthritis symptoms, and may be able to prevent or reduce the severity of asthma.
Olive Oil Phenols’ Prevent Bone Loss
The bone-sparing effects of olive polyphenols revealed in several scientific studies are so incredible that a new Belgian supplement company, BioActor, has licensed patents to use olive polyphenols for osteoporosis prevention. World Health Organization calls osteoporosis one of the biggest most widespread healthcare problems with aging populations.
Olive oil Effective against Helicobacter pylori
Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria that burrows into the gastric lining causing chronic inflammation and promoting the development of peptic ulcers and gastric cancer, is becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics. Unrefined olive oil, like the kind found in olives, has an extremely high antimicrobial activity against food-borne pathogens, not only helping prevent food poisoning, but also killing H.pylori.
Fat Burning Snack
Snacking on olives, high in monounsaturated fat or MUFA, can translate to significant loss of both body weight and fat mass without changing anything else about your diet or increasing your physical activity, suggests a study published in the British Journal of Nutrition.
Are You Convinced Yet?
While olives are usually pickled or brined in some way (fresh olives are too bitter to eat plain), they do have higher sodium content than olive oil. Olives, however, have fiber, vitamin E, vitamin A, copper, and calcium. While the beneficial polyphenol content is slightly lower in olives than olive oil, polyphenols are still highly present in olives.
Grab a handful of olives from the appetizer table and fill up on them instead of high carb, starchy, sugary holiday snacks!
Nearly 100% of tinned or bottled olives from Spain now are packed with MSG. This began about six years ago. I would check labels on any olive offerings.
I eat lost of olives and feed them to my child almost daily but I have had this concern myself as most of the olives I can find have citric acid as a preservative. Citric acid can contain MSG. I had thought for a long time that it came from citrus fruits but this is not the case any more.
I am looking for a reply to the book that I ordered. If I do not get a reply we will contact my credit card company.
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Thanks for the tip on MSG. I have quite a dislike for olives, but with these benefits I have decided to add them to my diet plan, as one would with medication. You don’t have to like medication to take it. I’m wondering whether any of the bottled olives on store shelves are classed as “processed” and have added sugar?
Olives are good, but as mentioned, are very high in sodium. I don’t think eating more than a handful are healthy. I would stick to the oil personally.
I certainly won’t ignore this advice. I have always loved olives – especially the green ones. I will look for a brand without the MSG if I can find any. Thanks for all the great info. It’s always good when something you love turns out to be extra healthy at the same time.