All about olive oil

Like many, I treat myself quite generously at my parents’ home, where there is a seemingly endless supply of things and money is no concern (to me).

Published: 06th October 2021 06:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th October 2021 06:37 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Like many, I treat myself quite generously at my parents’ home, where there is a seemingly endless supply of things and money is no concern (to me). This is almost exclusively related to luxury culinary interests — nori, ramen, steaks, cheeses and most importantly, olive oil.

Olive oil, while one of the most easily available ingredients, is still unaffordable to me, and several other Indians because of imported costs; it is brought in from Spain, Italy, Turkey. The price point and the fact that it is not a native product makes the oil very rare in traditional Indian cuisine.

However, this is not the only reason, according to Dr Preeti Raj, co-founder and chief nutritionist of Wootu Nutrition. “Traditionally used oils like sesame and groundnut have a higher smoking point than that of olive oil. This makes them ideal for Indian kitchens. These also have the same MUFA (monounsaturated fatty acids) as olive oil and thus are preferable. You could use olive oil for maybe a tadka,” she says.

So, why do we need to use olive oil at all? Well, as Gregory Antoniadis of SEVITEL (Greek Association of Industries and Processors of Olive Oil) says, “Once you get involved with olive oil, I think it starts circulating in your veins”.

It may not be a required alternative to your everyday oils, but its buttery, peppery taste is the best option for salads and particular cuisines (such as Italian and Mediterranean). “To reap the benefits of olive oil, you could put it in a salad, especially virgin olive oil,” Dr Preeti adds, elaborating on what health benefits this luxury oil has to offer.

Nutrition Profile (per tablespoon)
Energy: 119 calories
Saturated fat: 1.9 g
MUFA:  9.9 g
Polyunsaturated fatty acid: 1.4 g
Vitamin K: 8 mcg
Vitamin E: 11.5 mcg

Health benefits of olive oil 

Inflammation aid
Olive oil contains oleic acid that is helpful to reduce inflammation. “Diabetes and heart disease begin with inflammation. Hence, olive oil is beneficial for cardiovascular issues and diabetes,” says Dr Preethi.

For wounds and cuts
Those who are prone to hurt themselves may benefit from olive oil, a source of Vitamin K, that helps with coagulation. Coagulation is the process of a liquid (like blood), turning to a solid or semi-solid state.

Linked to helping Alzheimer’s patients 
Oleocanthal, a phenolic compound (phytochemicals with bioactive properties) found in olives, are linked to reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s. The same has been mentioned in multiple studies by the National Library of Medicine (USA).

Anti-oxidant trove
Olive oil is rich in antioxidants that can help reduce a myriad of illnesses by reducing damage caused to the body by oxidation.

Immunity booster
Vitamin E abundantly found in this oil can help protect the body from free radicals and boost the immune system. 

For the sake of heart health
There are some trace amounts of potassium in olive oil which can support the healthy functioning of the kidneys and the heart.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp