The results are in: Olive oil is a true superfood. Not only is it delicious in a salad dressing or drizzled over pasta, it has scientifically proven medicinal and weight-loss properties, which can be sourced by having three tablespoons or about 50ml of olive oil a day.
This is the opinion of US nutritionist and associate professor of clinical medicine Dr Mary Flynn, who’s been studying the effects and health benefits of olive oil since the 1990s.
“The general body of research says that once you have two or more tablespoons a day, you’ll improve your blood pressure, your glucose levels and your good cholesterol,” Flynn says. “But I’ve found that the weight-loss effect comes into play at three tablespoons, so that’s what I recommend. It’s an amazing food – it does all these things that help your body, plus it tastes good.”
It’s important to note that when Flynn refers to “olive oil”, she’s talking about extra-virgin olive oil, otherwise known as EVOO. This highest quality version is made by simply cold pressing oil from the olive fruit, and has been found to have the most effect on heart health, which is likely due to it being richer in nutrients.
A day on the olive oil diet
3 tbs extra-virgin olive oil (used in cooking or as a dressing)
3 cups veg (at least)
2-3 serves fruit
6-7 serves starch (wholegrains where possible)
2 serves dairy (including eggs)
1/2 serve of white meat or fish (3 serves a week)
Based on The Pink Ribbon Diet: A Revolutionary New Weight Loss Plan to Lower Your Breast Cancer Risk by Dr Mary Flynn and Nancy Verde Barr (Da Capo Press)