1. IDENTITY OF THE PRECIOUS TREE
Cultivated olive trees belong to the botanical group Sativa which, together with oleaster, a cousin of the same plant, are a sub-species of the Olea europaea. The Mediterranean, with its hot dry summers and cool winters with soft rains, is the ideal habitat of this tree.
Olive trees are not particularly demanding and can be grown on poor stony ground, unsuitable for other crops. An evergreen, it takes the olive tree 5 to 8 years to produce its first fruit, but the tree has an extremely long and productive life: up to 600 years, sometimes more. There are over 75 varieties of olives.
The word “olive” has European and Asian roots that denote its origin. It can be traced as far back as the Cretan word “elaiwa” and the Semitic word “ulu”, becoming “oleum” in Latin.
On the other hand the Spanish word for oil, “aceite”, has a totally different origin and comes from the word “zait” and “zaitum” in Arabic.
3. OLIVE OIL: THE JUICE OF THE OLIVES
Olive oil is the oil obtained from the fruit of the olive tree in a mechanical manner: the liquid is pressed out of the fruit of the olive tree and then separated from the mass of the squashed fruit by centrifugal force or else by precipitation.
4. FIRST APPEARANCE OF THE OLIVE TREE IN THE MEDITTERANEAN
There is no way of knowing when the olive tree first made its appearance. It is as if this tree wanted to keep its secret forever, making us believe it is as old as the world, as sacred as the oldest mysteries, a precious and unique gift from the gods to mankind. It is impossible to imagine Greece without the tree that gives it life, the olive tree. Beyond historical and archaeological facts, only mythology has the power to explain its origins…
Prevention is number one factor for good health.
Speaking as simple as we can and without the use of special medical terms we must point out the following:
1. Many diseases are caused by the incontrollable receipt of food, especially food containing in excess saturated fatty acids (animal fats), leading to arteriosclerosis and cardiovascular diseases.
Medical studies indicate that Mediterranean countries and specifically Greece, where olive oil consumption is high, suffer less cardiovascular problems from any other country in the world where the ratio of the consumption of animal fat is high or simply the nutrition parameters are poor.
By reducing the animal fats and increasing olive oil in our diet we obtain a perfect combination for the prevention of such fatal diseases, like arteriosclerosis and heart attacks.
2. The problems in bile area torture millions of people on our planet. The bad function of the bile and the formation of gallstone are problems difficult to cure and most of the times medical surgery is the only solution available.
Recent medical studies proved that olive oil, perfectly compatible with human body needs, creates a natural tie to those liquids that result in the formation of the gallstone mitigating pain and annoyance in bile’s area.
3. Millions of people around the world suffer by stomach problems and related diseases. Very serious is the gastric ulcer disease. As it is known the use of olive oil in nutrition is a beneficial factor for the function of the digestive system due to its property of keeping low the percentage of HCl in our stomach. Thus, the olive oil helps the normal function of the digestive system reducing to minimum the chances of ulcer creation and the other relative diseases, not to mention that is the best natural medicament for the fight against constipation.
It has been also proved that the use of olive oil in nutrition helps to sustain:
1. Human metabolism at a good balance, body’s growth and bone growth at a good level. It is obvious that olive oil means good health and development for our children.
2. Good level of Vitamin E in our body. This vitamin has the property to delay the change of the cellular structure which leads to natural decadence, the people’s aging, so one of the best medicaments for delaying aging is the olive oil. On the other hand, as we all know, Vitamin E improves our sexual life. So one can say that olive oil is by itself an aphrodisiac!
ast but not least, is the unique property of olive oil to dissolve useful substances coming from food that cannot be absorbed by the human body.
live oil is used in everyday cooking. It can be used in salads or added in the cooking process of almost any recipe. Olive Oil is the healthiest type of oil with 0% cholesterol, rich in Vitamins against aging and perfect even for frying dishes. Olive oil is the best nutritional gift we can offer to ourselves. Olive oil helps us keep good in health making our life pleasant.
Source:Olive Oil: Eat Better, Live Longer by Myrsini Lambraki&2009 greek-olive-oil.com. All rights reserved.