Consumers are on the lookout for foods to improve their diet. These foods include healthy fats, such as monounsaturated fatty acids, which are argued to have positive impacts on certain health conditions, including cardiovascular disease and cancer, as well as compounds like , polyphenols, with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties.
Olive oil is one of the richest sources of monounsaturated fats of all cooking oils and is naturally cholesterol-free. Olive oil contains much more monounsaturated (“good”) fats per tablespoon than butter, margarine, and other popular cooking oils.
Olive oil is low in saturated fat and does not contain trans fat, which may increase the risk of heart disease. Consuming monounsaturated fats is shown to help reduce the level of “bad” cholesterol that can cause deposits to form on the walls of arteries and other blood vessels.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil contains high amounts of polyphenols and other antioxidants, such as vitamin E, making olive oil an even more nutritious choice at the supermarket shelf.
How olive oil stacks up against other popular cooking oils and fats consumers can use in their diets:*
* Source: USDA nutrient database.