While olive oil has long been linked with a variety of health benefits, latest research findings from Spain have shed some light on the compound that may be responsible for some of these benefits. It seems plant chemicals (known as polyphenols), not fatty acids, may be responsible for some of the heart health benefits derived from olive oil consumption.
In a study of blood vessel function, researchers found that a polyphenol-rich olive oil caused a significant improvement, however there was little effect after subjects consumed an oil that had many of the phenols removed.
Healthy blood vessels ensure proper blood flow around the body whereas unhealthy vessels can eventually lead to blockages with implications for the heart.
The work on olive oil is complex as it contains hundreds of potentially active compounds, many of which are not well known. Moreover with numerous varieties of oil available, studies cannot be easily compared.
All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.