Over the centuries the Olive Oil has become an integral part of the well known Mediterranean Diet Pyramid. Research shows that people living in Mediterranean regions have reduced risk for certain chronic diseases and longer life expectancy, compared with other groups of people in the world.

health benefits

A number of studies have shown that olive oil may also help reduce or manage blood pressure, obesity, rheumatoid arthritis and immune function.
The Mediterranean diet and consumption of olive oil is associated with a low incidence of cardiovascular disease (CVD). The Lyon Diet Heart Study reported lower rates of coronary recurrence in people who consumed a Mediterranean diet. Other studies have focused specifically on olive oil and show that use of olive oil may reduce cardiovascular risk factors by decreasing plasma triglycerides, total and low density lipoprotein (LDL) bad cholesterol, platelet activation, inflammation and oxidative damage. It is also thought to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) good cholesterol and antioxidant status.

Research suggests that olive oil may also have a role in lowering the risk of several types of cancers, including breast, colon, lung, ovarian and skin cancers. Chemical compounds specific to olive oil, known as phenolics, appear to combat the build-up of free radicals in the body and may be able to reduce oxidative damage to DNA.

A detailed documentation of Olive Oil Health Benefits can be found at the Official International Olive Oil Council Web site :
http://www.internationaloliveoil.org/estaticos/view/87-mediterranean-diet-pyramid