The wild olive tree originated in Asia Minor in modern Turkey.
The Mediterranean diet incorporates olive oil as a key ingredient
in a large number of food preparations but it is more than
mere food to the peoples of the Mediterranean: it has been
medicinal, magical, an endless source of fascination and wonder
and the fountain of great wealth and power.
Generally, olive oil is extracted by pressing or crushing
olives. Olive oil comes in different varieties, depending
on the amount of processing involved. Varieties include:
- Extra virgin - considered the best, least processed, comprising
the oil from the first pressing of the olives
- Virgin - from the second pressing
- Pure - undergoes some processing, such as filtering and
- Extra light - undergoes considerable processing and only
retains a very mild olive flavor
It's health benefits include:
- high content of monounsaturated fatty acids and its high
content of antioxidative substances
- offers protection against heart disease by controlling
LDL ("bad") cholesterol levels while raising HDL
(the "good" cholesterol) levels
- vitamin E, vitamin K and polyphenols are present in olive
oil which increase a bodys defensive mechanism and
Many beauty products are made from olive oil, from soaps
and skin lotions to a base in cosmetics.
online store offers many fine olive oils of different types
and price ranges and from different countries. Simply visit
Oil Aisle to view our selections.
See also: Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Truffle Oil for more information.