Cholesterol Advice

Olive Oil and Controlling Cholesterol- Some Facts

Olive oil has come as a boon for those suffering from higher levels of blood cholesterol. It is a healthy, fulfilling and tasty way to lower high levels of cholesterol. Consumption of olive oil, especially extra virgin olive oil, can surely help you lower down your cholesterol levels, and that too while sufficing your taste-buds.

Olive Oil and Cholesterol Management
Olive oil is considered important to lower cholesterol as it contains monosaturated fats. These fats have a fundamental characteristic- they are responsible to promote insulin resistance, lower LDL cholesterol level and possibly raise the level of HDL cholesterol in the blood. This is extremely beneficial as you might be aware that LDL cholesterol is considered bad cholesterol whereas HDL cholesterol is considered to be a good type of cholesterol.

How Does It Happen?
Olive oil (and other monosaturated fats) help lower blood cholesterol in a very unique way. Owing to its grease like consistency, Cholesterol floats in our blood stream. While flowing freely around in the body cholesterol attaches itself to any molecule of protein that it finds. The new molecule thus created is called lipoprotein.

Two types of lipoprotein molecules are formed- lower density lipoproteins and high density lipoproteins. While HDL prevents clogging of arteries, LDL cholesterol is the main lipoprotein molecule responsible for clogging them.

Monosaturated fats such as those found in olive oil help reduce blood cholesterol as they increase the amount of HDL cholesterol in the blood. This increase is then responsible for a simultaneous decrease in the levels of LDL cholesterol.

Further, the high amount of anti-oxidants present inside extra virgin olive oil are responsible to inhibit the oxidation process of LDL cholesterol. This inhibition is extremely beneficial as LDL oxidation can cause some serious damage to arteries, ordinary cells and nerve cells. If allowed, LDL cholesterol oxidation can result in diseases such as coronary heart disease, arteriosclerosis, or even cancer.

Olive Oil- The Richest Source of Monosaturated Fats
Olive oil is considered to be an extremely good source of monosaturated fats. This is because it has an extremely high percentage (up to 80 per cent) of monosaturated fats (the rest being saturated and polyunsaturated fats). If you want something better then extra virgin olive oil is the only thing that you can get in the market.

Olive Oil- How Much Should I Consume?
If you are suffering from high levels of LDL cholesterol and want to reduce it to safe levels (as well as block the oxidation of remaining LDL cholesterol in blood), then it is advised that you consume a minimum of 25 ml (which is about 2 teaspoons) of olive oil each day for the next seven days.