Olive oil is as familiar in kitchens around the world as salt and pepper.
And for good reason.
Olive oil is the foundation on which pan-frying is built. It’s the magical ingredient that stops your chicken breast from sticking to the pan and turns soggy boiled potatoes into crispy wedges.
The versatility of olive oil explains why there are so many varieties available on the supermarket shelf, which brings its own problems.
What’s the difference between all these various types of olive oil?
Is one better than the other or are they all the same inside the bottle?
Why do they differ so much in price?
Hopefully the following article will clear everything up for you.
The difference between regular olive oil and extra virgin
Let’s start with the big question; are all these oils essentially the same but with different labels?
The answer is a resounding no.
Not all oils are created equal, and some are noticeably better than others.
The best oils are processed with more care, at lower temperatures, and are made from better ingredients.
Virgin olive oil is of a higher quality than regular olive oil containing an acidity of less than 2%.
Extra virgin, on the other hand, is olive oil at its most pure, and must contain no more than 0.8% acidity.
Chemicals can be used in the extraction of regular olive oil, but with extra virgin, only machinery is used to compress the olive and squeeze the oil out.
This is done at relatively low temperatures allowing all the natural goodness of the fruit to be retained.
Why choose extra virgin olive oil?
When it comes to cooking oils, extra virgin olive oil might just be the healthiest option out there.
A staple of the Mediterranean diet for thousands of years, the high levels of polyphenolic compounds in olive oil, are considered to be the reason people in the region have astonishing low rates of heart disease, arthritis, and even a higher life expectancy than their European counterparts. Olivado organic extra virgin is very high in polyphenols, the very reason we went to Spain to grow our olives!
Good for your heart
Olive oil has been scientifically proven to lower LDL cholesterol, the bad type of cholesterol, while raising HDL, the good type.
HDL cholesterol is considered good because it helps remove other forms of cholesterol from your bloodstream, resulting in a lower risk of heart disease and stroke.
Helps fuel your brain
Your brain is mostly made up of fatty acids, and olive oil is packed with healthy monounsaturated fats.
Studies have shown that these fats act as fuel for the brain, helping to improve memory, mood, and attention span.
A compound in olive oil called oleocanthal may have neuroprotective properties, protecting brain cells from dangerous neurotoxins.
This might be the reason the people of the Mediterranean have a relatively low rate of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Keeps you young
Studies have shown that olive oil also acts as an anti-inflammatory, helping to keep those aches and pains at bay as you get older.
Researchers have concluded that only three and a half tablespoons of olive oil were equivalent to 200mg of ibuprofen when reducing inflammation.
In fact, olive oil not only has a significant impact on chronic inflammation, but also on acute inflammatory processes.
Choose only the best
Extra virgin olive oil is better than regular olive oil, but taking it a step even further is our organic extra virgin olive oil.
The olives for our organic extra virgin olive oil are grown in the stunning mountains of the Sierra de Alcaraz, South-Eastern Spain, and are processed within hours of being picked; something that’s quite unusual for a mass-produced oil.
This quick turn around from vine to bottle results in a superior taste, unmatched by any other organic extra virgin olive oil.
Robust, with herbaceous and peppery flavours, our organic extra virgin olive oil is quite simply the best on the market.
Made from the finest ingredients, processed without chemicals or high temperatures, and bottled in dark glass to protect from the harmful UV rays from the sun, our organic extra virgin olive oil is the choice for professional chefs around the world, as well as any home cook who wants the best for their food.
If you have any questions about Olivado, our organic extra virgin olive oil, or indeed any of our award-winning cooking oils, then please don’t hesitate to contact us today.
Our friendly and experienced staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have.