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How to Find Real Olive Oil and Spot Fake Olive Oil

How to Find Real Olive Oil and Spot Fake Olive Oil

Ever since the scandal broke last year that most of the “extra-virgin” olive oil sold in the world is fake, there has been a major outcry as olive oil consumers and lovers decry the fraud which has been going on for a very long time. However, customers are now seeking tips on how to find and purchase authentic and 100% olive oil. Spotting real olive oil is now proving to be quite a difficult task after the scandal revealed that seven well-known Italian olive oil producers were involved in the olive oil scam and they were investigated for passing off counterfeit olive oil as authentic extra-virgin olive oil.

Olive oil is a nourishing food and has proven to be one of the most commonly counterfeited foods too. Sometimes other oils like soy and sunflower oil are bottled and passed off as virgin or extra virgin olive oil. Other times, lower grade oils are used to dilute olive oil just to maximize profits at the expense of the health of consumers.

With the revelation that this food fraud and scam has been going on for years, most of us have come to realize that we might not even know the real taste of olive oil since we have been cooking with and consuming fake olive oil most (or all) of our lives. But then, how can we tell if the olive oil in our kitchen is fake?

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    Here are some recommendations on how to find real olive oil and also spot the fake olive oil brands.

    • Avoid bargain prices, because the cost of producing genuine extra virgin oil is expensive. It is true that high prices don’t guarantee real and authentic oil, but low prices – under about US$10 for a liter – strongly suggest that the oil you’re buying is inferior. So, if the olive oil seems too cheap to be real, chances are high that it is fake.

    • To get the freshest oil, and cut out middlemen who often tamper with the quality of olive oil, buy as close to the mill as possible, if you’re lucky enough to live near a mill, or find local producers available around you and purchase directly from them.

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    • You cannot know what real olive oil tastes like if you have never tasted the real deal. You should spend extra money to purchase and learn what real olive oil tastes like. That way, you won’t be fooled anymore.

    • Avoid buying olive oil labeled “olive oil” or “olive pomace oil” “pure” and “light” oil, because they have been chemically refined. You should purchase olive oil labeled “extra virgin,” as it has more chances of being an extra virgin olive oil than if it is not labeled at all.

    • Purchase the quantity of olive oil you will use up quickly and you should pick bottles or containers that protect the oil against light,

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    • Always buy oil from the present year’s harvest – ensure that the date of harvest is displayed on the bottle for confirmation.

    • Good and real olive oil comes in several color shades — from green to gold to pale straw. However, you should avoid such flavors as greasy, moldy, metallic, meaty, cooked, and cardboard.

    • Purchasing an olive oil with the International Olive Oil Council certification is a definite, YES! Though this is not always a guarantee of quality or authenticity but certifications mentioned on olive oil labels can give consumers the confidence that the oil has been properly made.

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    You should keep in mind that a complete fail proof test to determine olive oil does not exist. This is the reason why we should thread on the side of caution by following most of the tips above in other to purchase and consume healthy olive oil.

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    Kyra Taylor

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    Last Updated on July 10, 2020

    How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

    How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

    We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

    We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

    So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

    Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

    What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

    Boundaries are limits

    —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

    Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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    Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

    Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

    Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

    How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

    Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

    1. Self-Awareness Comes First

    Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

    You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

    To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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    You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

    • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
    • When do you feel disrespected?
    • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
    • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
    • When do you want to be alone?
    • How much space do you need?

    You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

    2. Clear Communication Is Essential

    Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

    Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

    3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

    Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

    That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

    Sample language:

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    • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
    • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
    • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
    • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
    • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
    • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
    • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

    Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

    4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

    Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

    Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

    Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

    We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

    It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

    It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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    Final Thoughts

    Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

    Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

    Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

    The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

    Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

    Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

    They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

    Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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