Extra virgin olive oil is one of the most popular and healthiest vegetable/fruit oils on Earth, the fats in this oil are good for the heart and may aid in weight loss that is why it’s such a staple in the Mediterranean diet, where an average Greek consumes around 20 liters of this oil annually.
Extra virgin olive oil is considered the purest as it is produced by cold pressing and not mixed with other oils keeping it’s antioxidants and minerals fully intact. Fat in the diet has always been controversial, so replacing healthy fats with hydrogenated fats does make sense.
But what if the oil you get at your grocery store is not of the best quality and not really is extra virgin olive oil and could be fake? If the olive oil is mixed with other oils, it would lose its purity, this oil is a good source of antioxidants if it’s pure and has the healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
There has been massive fraud going on in this industry, and you should be vigilant of what you’re buying for you and your family. Even oils labelled as “extra virgin” and “100% Italian” are misleading, the only real extra virgin olive oil is the one that is manually cold-pressed and no chemicals are used in the process.
Unfortunately, a study in the university of California shows that around 70% of olive oil in the market is falsely labelled, so the fact of the matter is you could be paying for extra virgin live oil, but it’s not what it claims to be. Therefore, if you’re not buying the real thing you’re not getting the antioxidants and the health benefits.
What you can do is to choose brands with a proven track record, look for extra virgin oil certification, if the oil has a fruity smell it could be the real deal, always buy olive oil in darker bottles–you get what you pay for, so don’t go for cheap quality oils. Buy local as that’s always a better option in order to avoid fraud.
Another important thing to note is you must finish your olive oil bottle within a month or 2, the purest oil oxidizes as it is exposed to air and light–so be vigilant, buy local and enjoy adding extra virgin olive oil into your smoothies and salads.