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The Advantages of Olive Oil

Olive Oil vs other Fats

FATS
There are animal fats, such as butter and lard and vegetable fats such as margarines, vegetable spreads, vegetable  oils and olive oil.

In the chemical composition of each fat there are three types of fatty acids present: saturated, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated. 

The saturated fatty acids are the worst in health terms because they are difficult to digest and can cause problems in the circulatory system;

The monounsaturated fatty acids are better tolerated by the organism as they are more "balanced" and, as such, are better for the health and are sufficiently stable rarely causing cell damage (not promoting the formation of free radicals) and are easily digestible. Their consumption is associated with the reduction of the LDL fraction of cholesterol in the blood ("bad cholesterol")  and with the maintenance of cellular integrity;

The polyunsaturated fatty acids are easily digested but oxidate easily in the organism, forming free radicals (compounds which react with oxygen, not being as beneficial to the cells).

what types of fats do foods supply us?
• Saturated Fat
• Polyunsaturated Fat
• Monounsaturated Fat
• Trans Fatty Acids
• Hydrogenated Fat

Importance of fats
The fats are found in all animal  and vegetable cells and can be synthesized from carbohydrates. Not all fats are harmful and we should not abdicate from their presence in feed as they are the main source of sources. In a context of healthy eating, the fats from different foods are essential for the proper functioning of our organism and when consumed in the recommended proportions (not exceeding 30% of the daily energy figure), they are well tolerated and have various beneficial effects.

In turn, fats are source of energy and essential fatty acids, helping in the absorption of some fat-soluble vitamins (A,D,E,K), stimulating the secretion of bile,  improving the working of the gall-bladder and retarding the emptying of the stomach, increasing the sensation of having eaten enough thus reducing the intake of food.

Nevertheless when consumed in excess and in an unruly manner, the prejudicial effects are many and rapidly effect our well-being and health.

olive oil vs other fats
The fats from animal origin such as butter and lard, are typically composed by saturated fatty acids (solid at room temperature).

The  fats from vegetable origin  such as margarines and vegetable oils, are characterized by a strong presence of polyunsaturated fatty acids (liquid at room temperature) in their fat composition.

Olive oil is also a vegetable fat, but the only one mainly composed of monounsaturated fatty acids (principally oleic acid). Not only is the fat composition unique, but olive oil is also rich in polyphenols* that contribute to the protection of blood lipids from oxidative stress. These two features make olive oil the healthiest fat.

*The beneficial effect is achieved with a daily dose of 20 mg of olive oil.

On the other hand, olive oil has also an other advantage compared to other fats: it is the only fat obtained exclusively by mechanical processes, without any type of additive.

 

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THE OLIVE OIL

Olive oil is an oily juice extracted from the olives, exclusively by mechanical processes, liquid at room temperature, with a color between green and yellow.

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OIL

Vegetable oils are oily juices extracted from oleaginous plants, generally from their seeds or fruit. Subsequently, undergo chemical and physical refining processes.

MARGARINE

Margarine and vegetable spreads are an emulsion of water and vegetable oils. Subsequently this mixture is gradually cooled and the emulsion becomes a semi-paste.

Currently, the margarine production process is not achieved by hydrogenation step and therefore do not contain trans fats. By law, to be designated "vegetable spread" it must has a value of less than 80% of fat. If fat is greater than 80% and a maximum of 16% water, it is called margarine.

BUTTER

Butter is made with the fat part of milk. Its manufacture starts with the cream of the milk and can be salted or not. Nowadays it is made exclusively by the beating and kneading of the pasteurised cream exclusively from cow milk.

To start. The milk is skimmed for using the cream. The cream is then pasteurised and beaten and the fat is separated from what is left of the milk. These are called butter grains which are then washed, salted, kneaded and  pressed. The kneading is considered complete when the butter looses its granulated appearance and has a smooth and creamy texture.

 

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