We are sure of the extensive beneficial properties of extra virgin olive oil, but is this ALICAMENTO in the early stages of human nutrition?
We ask nutritionist Angela Zoccali who last month has told us about the elixir of life.
Doctor Zoccali what do you think are the main nutritional benefits of EVOO?
From my point of view the three main nutritional benefits are:
- It contains natural anti-tumor and antioxidant molecules such as oleocanthal and oleic acid, as confirmed by the recent study of the University of Oxford from 2018 (extra virgin olive oil contains a metabolo-epigentic inhibitor of cancer stem cells)
- It regulates blood pressure and reduces blood cholesterol levels with its hydroxytyrosol content.
- It promotes fertility and fight polycystic ovary syndrome thanks to the presence of vitamin E and monosaturated fatty acids, as well chlorophylls.
It’s a real source which we still underestimate that’s made up of about 300 substances.
FOR THE DIET OF OUR CHILDREN IS THE CONSUMPTION OF EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL INDICATED?
As parents we want the best for our children, and the best is to ensure that they grow up healthy and with habits that support that. Extra virgin olive is one of them. We were born in a country that produces large quantities and of exceptional quality; let’s use it as our parents and grandparents did.
FROM WHAT AGE IS IT POSSIBLE TO BEGIN?
During the weaning we can add it raw to the soups as it will help the baby to assimilate the fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K) and it will provide antioxidants and phenolic compounds that are much talked about nowadays. It’s not present in the other vegetable oils because they are extracted from seeds and not from a fruit like the extra virgin olive oil.
Considering the similar composition of breast milk, we’ll avoid the deficiency of Omega 3, deficient in cow’s milk and essential in the composition of the structure of cells and their membranes, in the functionality of the brain and in the structuring of the retina.
The introduction of extra virgin olive oil into the diet at weaning and until the child starts to introduce fish (better blue), is the only source that in addition to giving a good caloric intake, leads to rapidly changing body and a certain amount of Omega 3.
Its use is also recommended for skin care. In infants, diseases such as cradle cap (seborrheic dermatitis), dermatitis in the diaper area can benefit from the use of extra virgin olive oil which, contains squalene, a substance very similar to sebum has a high cleaning power and lubricates the scalp. The application with a cotton swab allows the subsequent removal of the crusts. Grandmothers used “oil beaten in water” as a cure for the redness in the diaper area, an old method but still valid even today.
AND FOR THE OLDER CHILDREN?
Let’s go back to the snack of bread and oil: it has all the necessary characteristics of a balanced and healthy meal. We can get our children used to eating raw or steamed vegetables with a drizzle of oil. We take advantage of its properties as an intestinal regulator and liver activity. Excellent in correcting constipation with its laxative action, even more effective when fasting. Let’s go back to the snack of bread and oil: it has all the necessary characteristics of a balanced and healthy meal. We can get our children used to eating raw or steamed vegetables with a drizzle of oil. We take advantage of its properties as an intestinal regulator and liver activity. Excellent in correcting constipation with its laxative action, even more effective when fasting.
WHAT ABOUT IF THEY ASK FOR FRIES?
The kids really enjoy French fries, lets please them…but don’t overdo it. It is however better to fry them in extra virgin olive oil due to its peculiarity of resisting up to 220 degrees, while its characteristics remain unchanged, without producing toxic polymers.
AND FINALLY FOR PARENTS? HOW MUCH CAN THEY CONSUME?
In my slimming diets and in the personalized nutritional plans that I draft, I allow you to use Extra Virgin Olive Oil every day, raw, in free quantities, without measuring it with a dropper or a spoon.
Thanks once again to Dr. Zoccali for her valuable contribution, we greet our readers by inviting them to follow our social pages to stay updated on the world of I&P.