EVOO. The shaman of the Mediterranean EN

marcha nordica8
9 de May de 2022

January, like September, are the months when we consider new beginnings, projects and life changes. Christmas is over and we start to hear that little voice inside us that makes us swear and perjure promises of taking better care of our health and well-being.

The complicated thing sometimes is to know where to start. Knowing which diet is the most advisable for each organism, knowing which foods contribute to less inflammation of the digestive system, stronger immune systems, and so on and so forth. While the bad news is that there is no single answer, there is, however, an ally in our diet that is the enemy of many of our ills.

As we are sure you know, the Mediterranean population is one of the longest-living in the world, and its success is no secret, it lies in the characteristics of its diet, and more specifically in one of its treasures, Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO).

However, it is surprising that we “Mediterraneans” ourselves are largely unaware of the health-giving properties of this great shaman. By way of comparison, we would dare to say that EVOO is like the celebrity everyone knows, but when asked for details, they know little to say

Our commitment is to let you in on the best-kept secrets of this “famous unknown” so that from now on it will be a regular in your kitchen and in your medicine cabinet.

Let’s start with the basics. EVOO is a fat, but is it one of the fats we should consume? Absolutely and categorically yes. But ladies and gentlemen, everything in the right measure. It is still a fat that fulfils its function

The Spanish Heart Foundation recommends the intake of three to six servings of extra virgin olive oil, both in dressings, in stews and, especially, in fried foods, as opposed to the use of other vegetable oils such as palm or coconut oil. This is because extra virgin olive oil contains high levels of oleic acid and linoleic acid, which raises levels of good cholesterol (HDL) and lowers bad cholesterol (LDL-c), and therefore has a direct benefit in controlling arterial hypertension, reducing the appearance of thrombosis and preventing the onset of diabetes. 

Along the same lines, we would like to demystify one of the great legends: “EVOO is fattening”. EVOO contains oleylethanolamide, a substance that provides a satiating effect on meals, helps to accelerate the metabolism, to eliminate unhealthy fats and favours intestinal transit, facilitating digestion and preventing constipation. It is therefore highly recommended in a balanced diet, even for weight loss.

But it’s not over, there’s more to come

The latest scientific studies show that EVOO plays a role in cancer prevention, especially in certain cancers related to fat consumption, such as breast and prostate cancer.

The latest scientific studies show that EVOO plays a role in cancer prevention, especially in certain cancers related to fat consumption, such as breast and prostate cancer.

EVOO and the rural world

Unsurprisingly, these anti-inflammatory properties of EVOO were already well known to our elders in rural areas. Since time immemorial, EVOO has been combined with the Hypericum flower, an exceptional duo with which they made Hypericum oil for health uses as an anti-inflammatory and antiseptic. This oil is made during the month of May, harvesting the hypericum flower, which is macerated in extra virgin olive oil and kept in a dry, dark place, and “taken out in the open air for 40 nights”. This results in an oily ointment which is used for anti-inflammatory purposes on the body, or as an antiseptic and wound-healing agent. A remedy that is still in use in our village, Macastre, by the older women who go out to look for the “flor de San Juan” to make the precious oil.

Finally, each EVOO is unique, depending on the variety or varieties from which it has been extracted, depending on the harvesting season, and therefore, depending on the chemical composition each year. Some aoves and varieties will have a higher content of healthy properties than others, but what we are sure of is that there is a special aoves for you.

Would you like to discover yours? From March we will be opening our olive grove so that you can discover AOVES from all over Spain, learn first-hand about their properties and their effects as a natural remedy for your wellbeing needs. We look forward to seeing you!

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