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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

    Writer and Lawyer

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    Last Updated on August 12, 2019

    12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

    12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

    Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

    But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

    I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

    Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

    1. Nuts

    The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

    Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

    Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

    Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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    2. Blueberries

    Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

    When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

    3. Tomatoes

    Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

    4. Broccoli

    While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

    Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

    Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

    5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

    Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

    The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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    Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

    6. Soy

    Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

    Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

    Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

    7. Dark Chocolate

    When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

    Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

    8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

    Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

    B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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    Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

    Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

    To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

    9. Foods Rich in Zinc

    Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

    Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

    Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

    10. Gingko Biloba

    This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

    It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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    However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

    11. Green and Black Tea

    Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

    Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

    Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

    12. Sage and Rosemary

    Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

    Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

    When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

    More About Boosting Brain Power

    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

    Reference

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