Everyone today practically believes that Olive oil especially extra virgin oil is good for health. Olive oil is naturally extracted from olives, the fatty fruit of the olive tree. About 24% of the oil is saturated fats and omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. But 73% predominantly fatty acid in olive oil is a monounsaturated fat called oleic acid, which is super healthy.
Monounsaturated fats found in extra virgin olive oil are quite resistant to high heat, making it a great choice for cooking. Besides this, olive oil contains a lot of anti-oxidants and has strong anti-inflammatory properties. It protects against heart disease, obesity and also cancer.
Olive oil has become a prime choice for consumers worldwide and is one of the most expensive oils. The olive oil is $16 billion a year industry, but unfortunately, with its popularity has also erupted a lot of corruption. You will be surprised to know that 70% of Olive oil available in stores in the US are fake which means they are infiltrated with low quality or cheap oils that are chemically refined.
The fake oil manufacturers are cleverly mixing inferior oils like sunflower or canola oil to minimise the cost of production and selling off as pure olive oils which are proving to be extremely expensive for users who are choosing it as a healthy alternative.
We shall advise you to buy it from authentic stores and have an expert eye to detect if it is genuine or fake. But if you are not a pro, you can always make use of the following tips
1. Must read Extra Virgin Oil – The phrase does not guarantee purity but without it, you will always purchase low-quality oil. Extra-virgin indicates that it comes from the very first pressing of each season’s olives, meaning that it is pure, luminescent green, and should have an almost peppery, powerful flavour.
2. Read out the specifics – Only the genuine oils will carry all the minute details like harvest date, estate or mill name, free fatty acidity level or FFA. An excellent oil will usually have an FFA of 0.2 percent or lower.
3. Don’t fall for packaging and high price – Cheap is a warning but expensive too doesn’t mean genuine. Look for finer details.
4. Quality never lies – Real olive oil should smell and taste green, bright, peppery, earthy, grassy, or any combination thereof.
5. The solidification process – Place the bottle in the fridge for about 30 minutes and check if the oil has started to solidify. If it does then it is a good indication that the oil contains a large amount of monounsaturated fat, which is what the extra virgin olive oil ideally contains. If the oil doesn’t begin to show signs of solidification there are good chances that the oil is fake. This is not a perfect test but a good indicator if you are unsure about the quality of your oil.
Undoubtedly, olive oil works good for your health but the adulterated oils do not. With the high percentage of counterfeit olive oils being sold in the market, you are likely to purchase one! So, just trust your senses and make a good choice keeping all the above points in mind while purchasing your next bottle of ‘Extra Virgin’ olive oil.