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Amazing Benefits Of Olive Oil You Need To Know

Amazing Benefits Of Olive Oil You Need To Know

Olive oil is one of the most hyped about oils on the market today. The oil is acclaimed for its versatility because it can be applied in many different ways, ranging from shaving to cleaning hands to polishing furniture. However, by simply considering these uses, we haven’t even scratched the surface of what olive oil is able to do with our health. Read on to explore more of the amazing benefits of olive oil. You may find yourself surprised by some of them:

1. It reduces the risk of diabetes

Olive oil is credited with effectively protecting us from diabetes. According to Harvard School of Public Health, the healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in olive oil can reduce the risk of diabetes by 50%. Although low fat diets are traditionally recommended to combat diabetes, the result shows that it is the type of fat rather than the amount of fat that matters.

Chronic inflammation is believed to be the root cause of diabetes. Consuming more olive oil which is an exceptional anti-inflammatory agent can help. Substances like oleic acid and oleocanthal in olive oil can reduce the expression of genes and proteins that mediate inflammation.

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2. It saves you from strokes

A study by the University of Bordeaux collected data from three groups of subjects aged over 65 and surprisingly found that the elderly who used olive oil for cooking and salad dressing more often had 41% lower risk of suffering from strokes. The researchers believe that olive oil is effective in dissolving unwanted blood clots in vessels, a key feature causing strokes.

3. It keeps your heart young

It is commonly known that the functions of our hearts and arteries degenerate when we age. It seems inevitable that we may suffer from some heart diseases when we grow old. Don’t be too pessimistic first! A Spanish study published in the British Medical Journal found that olive oil helps lower our blood pressure and protect our hearts from the damage of bad cholesterol. If you want to keep being healthy, you need to stock up on olive oil.

4. It strengthens your bones

A study by Madrid University found that men with the habit of consuming Mediterranean diets which are rich in olive oil had stronger bones. It was discovered that their blood had more osteocalcin, an important protein that contribute to healthy bone formation.

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Another research studying osteoporosis showed a similar result. Osteoporosis is a postmenopausal disease characterized by decreased bone density. The sufferers are more likely to have bone fractures. The animal test carried out by the researchers found that rats not treated with olive oil had much lower level of calcium, which shows that olive oil is a great source of calcium that helps strengthen bones. Doctors even recommend cooking nuts, seeds and beans with olive oil to optimize the effect!

5. It protects you from depression

Usually, we associate diets with our physical health but not mental health. But a Spanish study found that our consumption of fat largely determines the possibility that we suffer from mental illness. It said people who consume trans fat often have 48% higher risk of being susceptible to depression. The researchers suggested that olive oil can trigger higher level of serotonin, a brain chemical that serves as an antidepressant. So a high intake of olive oil can protect us from the attack of depression.

6. It helps prevent skin cancer

While using sunscreen remains the most reliable way shielding us from harmful UV rays, a recent study found that consuming olive oil reduces the risk of malignant melanoma, the most deadly skin cancer.

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The research result highlighted that much fewer residents of the Mediterranean countries suffer from skin cancers than Australians. Mediterranean diet with the frequent use of olive oil is found to be the key to this significant difference. Substances like oleic acid and vitamin E in olive oil are highly resistant to the oxidation caused by strong sunlight, and so they can protect our skin.

7. It helps prevent breast cancer

Regular ingestion of olive oil can reduce the incidence of breast cancer. A Saudi Arabian study found that oleuropein in olive oil has anti-breast cancer properties. A study by Autonomous University in Barcelona even found that the monounsaturated fat and antioxidants in olive oil can suppress the growth of tumors in general.

8. It reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s disease is caused by the buildup of the protein beta amyloid in our brains. According to a study published in Scientific American, the animal test conducted has proved that oleocanthal in olive oil helps remove the protein and has the potential to improve memory and learning ability of patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

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Also, olive oil polyphenols, a powerful antioxidant, is found to be effective in reversing damage of the ageing process to our brains and delaying the appearance of Alzheimer’s disease.

9. It boosts your brain power

A study by Columbia University made a comparison between individuals who consumed olive oil often and those who never used olive oil in their cooking. The researchers surprisingly found that the ones who consumed olive oil in Mediterranean diets have more gray and white matters in their brains. That means consuming olive oil does not only make you healthier but smarter! Amazing, right?

10. It makes you more attractive

Olive oil contains a wealth of compounds that keep our hair healthy. While vitamin E reduces hair loss, magnesium, zinc and B vitamins can boost hair growth. By consuming olive oil, you don’t need to worry about any problems concerning your hair. What’s more, you can even enjoy having glowing skin because olive oil is a good moisturizer in itself and has strong anti-ageing properties.

Featured photo credit: DUSAN ZIDAR via shutterstock.com

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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