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Question:
What are the health benefits of olive oil?

Answer:
Olive oil is high in monounsaturated "healthy" fats and, depending on the oil, may be rich in antioxidant polyphenols. Olive oil can help lower cholesterol and control insulin levels in the body and may reduce the risk of certain types of cancer. For details, including amounts of oil used, see the full answer >>

For even more information, as well as CL's Top Picks, see the full Extra Virgin Olive Oils Review>>   



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Also see these related CL Answers:



Does cooking or frying with olive oil make it less healthy? >>

How can I find the best quality extra virgin olive oil?  >>



See other recent and popular questions >>
Comments
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Jacqueline8411   February 3, 2016
Please consider testing ZOE Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil which is a product of Spain.
It comes in BPA free lined cans and I have been purchasing it from Amazon. Thank You.

Shelley16421   February 4, 2018
Thanks for your information!!

Robert8384   January 21, 2016
Have there been any studies that show olive oil can have a positive effect on a man's testosterone levels? I heard this from a friend who follows a certain natural health expert on the internet.

ConsumerLab.com   April 14, 2016
Hi Robert - Thank you for your question. We've now added information about this to the answer above.

Ken8374   January 20, 2016
For a contrary view on olive oil and other oils see the website of Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn of the Cleveland Clinic Wellness center as well as Dr. John McDougal's website.

Diana8337   January 12, 2016
Please test a variety of Kirkland EVOOs along with relevant data--thanks

Mary8284   January 10, 2016
Will you test the Napa Naturals olive oils?

Robert8271   January 4, 2016
Per 60 minutes on Jan3 75% of the olive Italian oil sold in the USA is fraudulent!!

ConsumerLab.com   January 10, 2016
Hi Robert - You may be interested in our CL Answer about finding a quality extra virgin olive oil: https://www.consumerlab.com/answers/How+can+I+find+the+best+quality+extra+virgin+olive+oil/best_quality_%20olive_oil_/

Chris8269   January 4, 2016
Did anyone see the story about olive oil on 60 Minutes yesterday? They say up to 80% of the extra virgin olive oil in the US is not the real thing, fake, contaminated, etc. Worth checking out.

Jim8265   January 4, 2016
CBS Sixty Minutes reports 80 percent of Italian Olive oil has been corrupted and isn't 100% virgin olive oil.

Robert8262   January 3, 2016
Now we have a 60 Minutes episode revealing that much if not most of the "extra virgin" olive oil on the market, including big name brands, is counterfeit -either diluted and adulterated with other oils or entirely made up of other oils colored and scented to simulate the real thing, and some contaminated with toxins including pesticides. Seems like a real challenge for Consumer Labs.

ConsumerLab.com   January 10, 2016
Hi Robert - You may be interested in our CL Answer about finding a quality extra virgin olive oil: https://www.consumerlab.com/answers/How+can+I+find+the+best+quality+extra+virgin+olive+oil/best_quality_%20olive_oil_/

Dave8261   January 3, 2016
60 Minutes tonight has a session on olive oil, as well as other Italian products that are heavily controlled by the mafia there, turning out false products that are not even close to what is advertised. Olive oil shipped to the U.S. may be 80% counterfeit - this is serious - please check it out for your members.

ConsumerLab.com   January 10, 2016
Hi Dave - Please see our CL Answer about finding a quality extra virgin olive oil: https://www.consumerlab.com/answers/How+can+I+find+the+best+quality+extra+virgin+olive+oil/best_quality_%20olive_oil_/

ron8247   January 3, 2016
I have been aware of the benefits of having MCFA fats and use a small amount of coconut oil in my morning smoothies a couple times a week. Thanks for this article.

Shirley8183   December 16, 2015
What is the best olive oil to buy?

ConsumerLab.com   January 10, 2016
Hi Shirley -- We've addressed this in a new CL Answer: https://www.consumerlab.com/answers/How+can+I+find+the+best+quality+extra+virgin+olive+oil/best_quality_%20olive_oil_/.

You may also be interested to know that ConsumerLab.com will be testing extra virgin olive oils -- results expected in Spring of 2016 (more about this in the answer).

Richard7962   September 21, 2015
This article drives home why I am perplexed by the many studies (of, for example, fish oil) that use olive oil capsules as a placebo.

Brian M7960   September 20, 2015
Brendon, I only buy olive oil from companies that make the oils' chemistry available. Amphora Nueva in California does this. Some extra virgin oils have much more polyphenols than others. It depends on many factors, including the type of olive.

Mary7956   September 17, 2015
Paula7953 - I, too, have heard that high heat reduces the benefits of olive oil and would like to know if this is true.

Michael7966   September 23, 2015
I'm with you guys. I wish CL would address this. I always cook with extra virgin olive oil and I've read conflicting reports if the heat ruins the good effects. I have high BP and want to know if I'm using EVOO wrong.

ConsumerLab.com   September 24, 2015
Hi Michael - We've now answered this in question here: https://www.consumerlab.com/answers/_/cooking_olive_oil/


Charlie8099   November 25, 2015
I would like to contribute this to your concern about Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I do not have any expert knowledge in this area; but one of the most accomplished and well known Italian Chefs in the country, Mario Batali, once said that he uses Extra Virgin Olive Oil for everything.

Vince7954   September 16, 2015
What's the problem with enhancing the effects of Amlodipine? I take it (5 mg) daily and also use olive oil in many things. If the med is intended to lower my BP, wouldn't enhancing it's effect be a good thing? Thanks much, Vince

ConsumerLab.com   September 18, 2015
Hi Vince - If you take medication to lower blood pressure, it's good to be aware of this in case you find your blood pressure goes too low.

Mark7961   September 20, 2015
Consumer Lab: Thank you for your comment concerning the enhancement of blood pressure lowering while taking Amlodipine. I've been checking my pressure while increasing my olive oil consumption a bit, and have plenty of room for further lowering, so for me it works well without causing any excessive lowering.

paula7953   September 16, 2015
I have been told that frying with Extra virgin olive oil makes it then become a more saturated fat - is this true? Should we only use it for dressings?

Vince7955   September 16, 2015
Check me on this but I think saturation of fats is the result of adding hydrogen to them to aid in preserving them. Hydrogenation is the culprit, not heating the olive oil and to my knowledge olive oil is not and never has been hydrogenated.

Brendon7951   September 16, 2015
What type of olive oil is rich in polyphenols?

ConsumerLab.com   September 16, 2015
Hi Brendon - As noted above, extra virgin oils have been found to contain the highest levels of polyphenols.

This CL Answer initially posted on 9/16/2015. Last updated 8/2/2017.

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