Extra virgin olive oil is the key ingredient to the Mediterranean diet!
Those who cook at home know very well that there’s a wide range of oils when it comes to choosing which type to use during frying, baking or when you just want to drizzle with. You surely know coconut or avocado oil, sunflower oil, and the most known of all, olive oil. It’s very common for people to wonder which oil best suits them. That depends largely on the type of your cooking, but we can assure you that using olive oil, and especially extra virgin, is the right choice for every single type of cooking! Olive oil is very high in beneficial fatty acids, powerful antioxidants, and polyphenols, but due to its unsaturated fat content, many people think that it’s unsuitable for cooking. In this article, we’ll try to explain why and whether you should use olive oil during cooking.
Should you truly have to be concerned?
There are two things you need to know about oils and high heat.
The first one is the smoke point, meaning in how many degrees the fats begin to decompose and turn into smoke, and secondly, the oxidative stability, meaning the degree to which fats react with oxygen.
When fats of every type of oil are using during cooking, they are exposed to extremely high heats, and that’s the reason why many people try to find out more about cooking oils as some of them can become really harmful to human’s health. The oils that are dangerous are those that contain high amounts of polyunsaturated fats, as is the majority of vegetable oils, like soybean. These kinds of oils in high temperatures form various harmful compounds like lipid peroxides. That’s the reason why when we cook, we should better use oils that are stable at high heat, minimizing the exposure to potentially harmful compounds. Extra virgin olive oil, like Lyrakis Family, is performing well both in smoke point and oxidative stability, make it one of the best solutions for frying or baking!
Monounsaturated fats are resistant to high temperatures?
Extra virgin olive oil contains mostly monounsaturated fatty acids.
Generally, there are three categories of fatty acids and they are familiar to all. You know saturated, monounsaturated, or polyunsaturated fats. Right?
What you may don’t know is that these three separate categories of fats react differently to high temperatures. Saturated and monounsaturated fats are largely resistant to heat, in contrast with polyunsaturated! The majority of vegetable oils contain polyunsaturated fats, making them that way unsuitable for cooking at high heat.
Olive oil, and even more, extra virgin olive oil contains at most the heat–resistant monounsaturated and saturated fats, at a significant percentage of 87%!
Natural protection from oxidative damage!!
Rich in Antioxidants, Polyphenols, and Vitamin E.
Extra virgin olive oil, like ours, is produced exclusively by mechanical methods with no chemicals or additives, naturally obtained directly and solely from olives and then cold-pressed. Thank the way it’s produced, it’s very nutritional and beneficial for the human body, as it’s high in polyphenols and offers plenty of bioactive substances, like antioxidants and vitamin E.
Vitamin E acts as a powerful antioxidant for our body, protecting us from various diseases as they shield our cells. So given that this specific vitamin is one of the main constituents of extra virgin olive oil, consuming sufficient quantities of this type of oil and using it in our cooking, provides us with significant natural protection from oxidative damage.
You’re safe now!
When oils are heated, they highly react with oxygen and forms various harmful compounds. However, specifically, extra virgin olive oil is one oil that holds up pretty well during heating due to, as we’ve previously discussed, high antioxidant and low polyunsaturated content. That makes it very safe for you to use it for even deep-frying not mentioning baking, or when you just want to drizzle your salad with it. Many studies have exposed olive oil heat for long periods of time, showing that even under such extreme conditions, olive oil doesn’t form significant amounts of harmful compounds, making it very safe to use it. There is a temperature where the oil starts to degrade and produce visible smoke and that’s where fat molecules break apart and become harmful compounds, the well-known smoke point. Extra virgin olive oil’s smoke point is around 374–405°F (190–207°C), making it a really good, maybe the best, choice for most cooking methods. You may have heard in the past that cooking destroys some of the olive oil’s beneficial compounds, but that’s why most studies are applying extreme methods, like very high heat and prolonged cooking, which aren’t practically applied to everyday home cooking styles. Making a base for a casserole or pasta sauce where you’ll be slow cooking your onions and garlic, the temperature point suits extra virgin olive oil perfectly, and using a good oil, like Lyrakis Family olive oil, you’ll benefit from a more delicious dish.
Try to use a top–quality extra virgin olive oil, like Lyrakis Family!
That kind of olive oil isn’t just an excellent cooking oil, but also one of the healthiest!
Quality extra virgin olive oil is an extremely healthy fat that retains its beneficial qualities during cooking, and the only difference you might taste after being cooked it’s that it may be overheating impact its flavor..However, that downside is nothing compares to all these advantages! Of course, we would urge you to use it raw in all your salads, because this original taste of our olive oil will actually drive you crazy!
Mediterranean kitchen and extra virgin olive oil
For several years Greeks, Spanish, and Italians have been using in their Mediterranean, traditional cooking only extra virgin olive oil as there aren’t through all these centuries any adverse effects arising. On the contrary, the Mediterranean diet is the one most recommended by all dietitians worldwide. Try today to incorporate the wonderful and very healthy Mediterranean diet in your daily life, taking the first step by buying and using Lyrakis Family extra virgin olive oil, in order to start seeing by yourself all these wonderful benefits in your daily cooking.