Olive Oil for Weight Loss
Olive oil has long been praised for its numerous health benefits, and one of its potential benefits is weight loss. There are several ways in which olive oil can aid in weight loss, such as reducing inflammation, increasing feelings of fullness, and potentially boosting metabolism. However, it is important to note that incorporating olive oil into your diet alone is not a magic solution for weight loss.
Rather, it should be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet that also includes exercise and a reduction in overall calorie intake. With this in mind, let’s explore the ways in which olive oil can potentially aid in weight loss.
Is Olive Oil Good for Weight Loss? According to recent findings in 2023, olive oil is considered a healthy source of monounsaturated fats and medium-chain triglycerides, which have been shown to offer potential benefits for weight loss. Studies have also found that diets rich in olive oil may contribute to weight management by affecting blood glucose and insulin levels, potentially reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes. It is important to note that while olive oil can be beneficial for weight loss when incorporated into an overall healthy diet, it is still a high-calorie food and should be consumed in moderation. Furthermore, extra-virgin olive oil is regarded as the healthiest type of olive oil because it contains natural chemical compounds called phenols or polyphenols that provide extra health benefits.
How to Use Olive Oil For Weight Loss
Incorporating olive oil into your diet may offer potential benefits for weight loss. A study showed that a 10-gram daily increase in olive oil consumption was significantly associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes by 9%, while up to 15-20 grams daily intake decreased the risk by 13%. In addition, olive oil is a healthy source of monounsaturated fats and medium-chain triglycerides, which may also aid in weight loss.
One recommended way to use olive oil for weight loss is to start the day with two tablespoons of olive oil on an empty stomach, and then incorporate natural foods such as:
- Herbs, with more olive oil as the main staples in your meals.
Overall, while olive oil may offer potential benefits for weight loss, it’s important to consume it in moderate amounts and as part of a balanced diet, rather than solely relying on it as a weight loss solution.
11 Proven Benefits of Olive Oil
Olive oil is a natural oil extracted from olives, and it has been found to have numerous health benefits that are supported by scientific research. Below are 11 benefits of olive oil that have been proven:
1. Rich in healthy monounsaturated fats:
Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fats (MUFAs), which are considered heart-friendly fats and can help in lowering your risk of heart disease. Recent studies have shown that the consumption of olive oil can lead to a reduction in LDL or “bad” cholesterol levels in the body.
This finding helps to explain why the Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes the consumption of olive oil, is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease.
2. May prevent stroke:
In the United States, stroke is a significant contributor to both mortality and disability. The major risk factors for stroke include high blood pressure, diabetes, heart and blood vessel diseases, high LDL cholesterol levels, smoking, and brain aneurysms or arteriovenous malformation. Age, race or ethnicity, and sex are also factors that can increase the risk of stroke.
A stroke occurs when there is a disruption in the blood flow to the brain, either due to a blood clot or bleeding. In developed nations, stroke is the second most common cause of death after heart disease.
A comprehensive analysis of studies conducted on 841,000 individuals revealed that olive oil was the sole source of monounsaturated fat linked to a lower risk of stroke and heart disease. Additionally, another review involving 140,000 participants found that those who consumed olive oil had a significantly lower risk of stroke compared to those who did not.
3. Supports brain health:
The polyphenols in olive oil have been found to have neuroprotective effects and may help prevent age-related cognitive decline and improve memory and learning abilities.
4. Anti-inflammatory properties:
The compound called oleocanthal, found in olive oil, has anti-inflammatory properties similar to ibuprofen. This makes it beneficial for reducing inflammation and pain associated with conditions such as arthritis.
5. May prevent Type 2 diabetes:
One of the ways that it may help is by affecting blood sugar and insulin levels, which in turn can affect body weight. Tissues and organs’ response to the hormone insulin decreases insulin resistance, which can cause high levels of insulin and blood sugar. If we don’t treat this condition, it may lead to diabetes.
6. May reduce the risk of certain cancers:
Researchers have found that olive oil’s polyphenols possess anti-cancer properties and can potentially decrease the likelihood of breast, colon, and other types of cancer.
7. Promotes healthy skin:
Olive oil is known for its potential health benefits, including its benefits for the skin. It is rich in vitamins E and A, which makes it a beneficial ingredient for the skin. Vitamin E helps support the skin’s moisture retention, while Vitamin A helps to reduce the signs of aging. It contains antioxidants that protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals.
8. Reduces the risk of depression:
Studies have found that consuming olive oil regularly may help reduce the risk of depression and improve mood.
9. Help to treat rheumatoid arthritis:
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes painful and deformed joints by attacking healthy cells mistakenly. The researchers have found that people with rheumatoid arthritis can experience improvements in their inflammatory markers and reduction of oxidative stress with the use of olive oil supplements, despite the unknown cause of the disease.
The combination of olive oil and fish oil, a source of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids, has also shown significant benefits in improving handgrip strength, joint pain, and morning stiffness in people with rheumatoid arthritis.
10. May improve digestive health:
The monounsaturated fats in olive oil can help improve digestive health by reducing inflammation in the gut and promoting the growth of healthy gut bacteria.
11. May reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease:
Alzheimer’s disease is a prevalent neurodegenerative disorder that affects people worldwide. Beta-amyloid plaques accumulate within brain cells, causing brain cells to die and brain shrinkage characterizes the condition. While Alzheimer’s typically affects individuals later in life, early-onset Alzheimer’s can occur in people between their 30s and mid-60s.
A study in mice has shown that a substance found in olive oil may help eliminate these plaques from the brain cells.
Recipes using olive oil that can promote healthy weight loss.
Adding olive oil to your diet can be an effective way to enhance weight loss while also improving overall health. Here are two delicious olive oil recipes that can help with healthy weight loss:
1. Olive Oil and Lemon Dressing:
- In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Use this dressing on your salads or roasted vegetables.
2. Olive Oil and Garlic Roasted Salmon:
- Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C).
- In a small bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper.
- Place a salmon fillet in a baking dish and brush the olive oil mixture over the top.
- Bake until the salmon is fully cooked, typically taking 12-15 minutes.
Remember that olive oil is calorie-dense, with 1 tablespoon (15 milliliters) containing 119 calories and 14 grams of fat. Therefore, it is important to limit your intake and use it in moderation as part of a healthy, balanced diet.
In conclusion, olive oil can potentially aid in weight loss due to its high content of monounsaturated fats and medium-chain triglycerides. However, it is important to note that olive oil is also high in calories and fat, so moderation is key.
Experts recommend including olive oil as a main staple in a healthy, balanced diet that comprises natural foods such as vegetables, beans, seafood, and herbs. Ultimately, consulting with a doctor or a registered dietitian is crucial before trying any new diet plan.
Olive oil may help reduce belly fat due to its monounsaturated fats and medium-chain triglycerides. However, it is important to limit intake as it is high in calories and fat.
Although olive oil consumption may offer potential health benefits, experts do not recommend excessive consumption. One to two tablespoons per day is a safe amount to include in a balanced diet.
While olive oil has potential benefits for weight loss, it may not be the best oil to use for frying. Its smoke point is around 410 degrees Fahrenheit, which may not be high enough for optimal frying temperatures. However, if you choose to fry with olive oil, it is advisable to use a higher grade such as extra-virgin olive oil, and to maintain the temperature below its smoke point to prevent the creation of harmful compounds.
Yes, drinking olive oil directly is a common practice in some Mediterranean regions and may offer health benefits such as stabilizing blood sugar and reducing the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and abnormal blood sugar levels. The recommended amount of olive oil to consume directly, first thing in the morning is up to 1/4th cup or 60 ml.
Olive oil is safe for most people when used in food. High doses may cause gastrointestinal discomfort. Rarely, it can cause an allergic reaction.