OLEOCANTHAL, O-LIVE AND CANCER

O-live January 30, 2018

There are many reasons to love olive oil. It not only tastes great by itself, but it can also improve and add flavor to practically any dish. Even a simple piece of bread tastes better when dipped in or drizzled with olive oil. Going beyond the cooking aspects, olive oil, particularly extra virgin olive oils like O-Live, have been showing extreme promise when it comes to improving our health.

Loaded with antioxidants and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, extra virgin olive oil has been found to help with a myriad of health conditions. Managing weight loss, type 2 diabetes, and joint pain, and the improvement of cholesterol and blood pressure numbers, are just a small sampling of EVOO’s benefits. One of the components in olive oil that provides these health benefits is oleocanthal, which is a phenolic compound (a scientific way of saying “plant stuff”) that has antioxidant properties. Studying oleocanthal and its health benefits is relatively new. After all, it was only discovered in the early 2000s, when Dr. Gary Beauchamp was trying to improve the taste of ibuprofen. Since then, studies have been touting the benefits of oleocanthal and extra virgin olive oil. The majority of these studies have been in vitro, or in a test tube, but it’s only a matter of time before animal and then human studies are conducted to verify the potential health effects for people. One of the most promising discoveries in the in vitro studies is how oleocanthal affects human cancer cells. Normal, healthy cells often undergo a process called apoptosis, which is the killing off of cells that have been damaged or otherwise have run their course of usefulness. The problem with cancer cells is that they are resistant to this process. Instead of the damaged cancer cells dying off, they continue to grow in number and eventually form tumors. Where oleocanthal has been found to help fight cancer is with the triggering of apoptosis in cancerous cells, while leaving healthy cells unharmed. Apoptosis usually takes 16 to 24 hours to complete, but oleocanthal targets cancer cells and breaks through their lysosomes, which are membranes that hold enzymes that control waste disposal within cells, among other functions. When these membranes are opened up, the enzymes and waste spill into the cell and cause it to die. As a result, the normal day-long process is sped up to a mere 30 to 60 minutes. Further research is needed, as it is still unknown if oleocanthal retains its effectiveness when it’s inside humans. However, there really isn’t anything to lose by testing these theories yourself, plus you get to enjoy delicious extra virgin olive oil in the process.

Taking advantage of the health benefits extra virgin olive oil gas to offers is not a one and done activity Time and long-term consumption are required. It is recommended to consume 3 1/2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil a day to reap the full effect. This might seem like a lot, but if you swallow one tablespoon in the morning and one in the evening, then cook with the remaining amount, it is very feasible. The possibilities seem to be endless when attempting to utilize the health benefits of extra virgin olive oil. But remember that much of the research is still young, and depending solely on olive oil to cure what ails you is not advised. As much as you love O-Live and extra virgin olive oil in general, doctors are still the best source of treatment for your health conditions. But that doesn’t mean you can’t help their course of action along with the power of O-Live!

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