The fruit of the olive tree, often known as the “European olive,” or olea europaea is an edible olive that tastes like a mild greengage. Olive trees can be found in South America, Africa, India, China, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and the United States as well as throughout the Mediterranean Basin.

Olives are a prominent ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine and a major export commodity for Spain, Italy, Greece, Turkey, and Morocco. Green and black olives are the most common type of olive consumed in the United States.

What are olives

The olive, botanically known as Olea europaea (literally, “European olive”), is a tiny tree or shrub in the Oleaceae family that has been native to the Mediterranean Basin. nThe name dwarf olive, little olive, or Montra refers to it when it is in shrub form. It is cultivated on every continent except Antarctica. The type species of the genus Olea is Olea europaea.

Health benefits of olives

green fruits on black basins

Olives are a common component of Mediterranean cuisine. They are linked to numerous health advantages, including heart health and cancer prevention. Let’s take a look at some of the health benefits of eating olives.

Cancer reduction

Olives are high in oleocanthal, a chemical that has been proved in laboratory research to kill cancer cells. Other studies have found a link between olive oil consumption and a decreased risk of cancer, particularly breast cancer.

Antioxidant characteristics

Antioxidants in your diet can help you avoid chronic diseases like heart disease and cancer. Olives are high in antioxidants, which have a wide range of health benefits including lowering inflammation and preventing microorganisms from growing. Consuming the pulpy residue from olives has been shown to boost blood levels of glutathione, one of the body’s most potent antioxidants.

Improves the health of the heart

Blood cholesterol and blood pressure are both heart disease risk factors. Oleic acid, the major fatty acid in olives, has been linked to better cardiac health. It has the ability to lower cholesterol levels while also preventing LDL (bad) cholesterol from oxidation. Olives and olive oil have been found in studies to reduce blood pressure as well.

Improved bone health

Osteoporosis is a disease in which the bones become porous and brittle. It raises the risk of fractures. Because Mediterranean regions have fewer osteoporosis rates than other parts of Europe, olives have been proposed as an anti-osteoporosis food. In animal studies, several plant components found in olives and olive oil have been shown to help prevent bone loss.

Despite the fact that there have been no human studies, animal research and evidence suggesting that the Mediterranean diet decreases fracture rates are intriguing.

Diabetes prevention

According to studies (sugar), olive oil consumption has been linked to the prevention of type 2 diabetes by assisting the body’s glucose management. Type 2 diabetes is a condition in which blood sugar levels are out of control.

Lowers the risk and Treatment of Cognitive Diseases

Olives and olive oil have oleocanthal, which has been linked to a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease and other brain disorders. This chemical also improves the efficacy of donepezil dementia therapy medication.

Nutrition

Olives are high in vitamin E and other antioxidants, which might reduce your risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. It also contains minerals like iron, calcium, copper, fiber, carbohydrates

How to prepare olives?

At most supermarkets, olives come in a variety of forms and sizes. They’re available packed in salt or water, canned or bottled. Fresh olives can be found at a supermarket or a Mediterranean specialty shop.

Whole olives may be served, and they’re frequently found on a charcuterie platter or cheese plate. It is possible to produce your own olive oil by removing the oil from olives, but it is time-consuming. If you want to give it a go, you’ll need the following equipment:

  • It can be a millstone or another grinder.
  • An immersion blender is a kitchen utensil with a long, thin blade that fits into the bottom of your pan.
  • A weight such as a brick or a hefty book
  • For pressing, a clean surface is required.
  • Bottles
  • A funnel

The first procedure is to cold-press olives for the olive oil, which is followed by the discard of the rest. Cold pressing allows you to extract oil without using heat, preserving as much of it as possible. Here are some alternative uses for olives in your cuisine:

  • Pour the milk over a side of hummus.
  • As a garnish or an ingredient in a cocktail
  • It adds an interesting texture to a dish and you can use it as a dressing base for salads.
  • Replace less nutritious oils in recipes with healthier oils instead.
  • Alternatively, combine the arugula with some tapenade and make a tapenade out of it.
  • Slice and sprinkle as a pizza topping.
  • Toss with other pasta dishes
  • Slice the avocado and use it as a sandwich topping.
  • Serve large olives stuffed with mild cheese as an appetizer.

Can olives help me lose weight?

Olives are low-calorie foods that are high in healthy fats, which can help you reduce weight by keeping you satisfied and using less harmful lipids in your diet.

How many olives should I eat in a day?

Despite the fact that olives have a low-calorie density and may aid with weight reduction in a variety of ways, they should be used in moderation owing to their high salt and overall fat content. Furthermore, if you don’t keep track of your serving sizes, the calories in olives might add up rather quickly.

Reduce your daily saturated fat intake to 2–3 ounces (56–84 grams) — roughly 16–24 small-to-medium-sized olives — to stay under the suggested limits.

Olives can help you lose weight, but they’re high in salt and fat, so eating too many of them might hinder your progress. As a result, you should restrict your intake to no more than a few ounces per day on average.

The number of olives you can eat a day is 16 – 24 small to medium-size olives, according to the USDA.

Are olives in a jar healthy?

Olives are low in cholesterol and contain a lot of fiber, which the body require for good gut health. They’re also high in vitamins and minerals that the body need to operate, including iron and copper. Olives should be consumed in moderation, however, because manufacturers frequently keep them in salty brine.

Why do olives taste so bad?

A gorgeous olive, ripened off the sun-heated tree, is repulsive. Oleuropein, a phenolic compound strong enough to turn your teeth black, is the component that makes it truly inedible. The bitterness of olives serves two purposes: it protects them against invasive germs and seed-crushing mammals by making them unpalatable.

Why are olives black and green?

The color of an olive (green or black) is determined by when it is picked and stored. Unripe green olives are known as, while ripened black olives are known as (you guessed it). The more time an olive immersed in solution sits, the less bitter it becomes.

Do olive trees bear fruit every year?

When an olive tree is given shelter and care, it will begin to produce olives after five years. However, keep in mind that it’s quite common for olive trees to bear fruit only every other year or to alternate heavy and light crops from year to year.

Summary

Olives are a fantastic and tasty addition to any dinner or appetizer. Eat around 16–24 olives each day, according on taste. This fruit is easy to include into your daily routine and is an excellent complement to a nutritious, whole-food diet.