Some things just go together: peanut butter and jam, ketchup and mustard - Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) and black garlic. Few have tried the black garlic EVOO taste combo - and few can only taste it once.
There are lots of condiments out there that taste amazing and that's it. Some things like Ketchup actually have a lot of sugar (which in case you didn't know is actually really bad for you). But EVOO and black garlic are an amazing taste combo with tons of health perks mixed in.
We've talked before about the awesomeness of EVOO and black garlic separately. Let's take a look at the combined health perks they bring to your plate.
EVOO Health Perks
Some of EVOO's health benefits may surprise you.
Fend Off Cancer
The phytonutrient in olive oil, oleocanthal, mimics the effect of ibuprofen in reducing inflammation, which can decrease the risk of breast cancer and its recurrence. Squalene and lignans are among the other olive oil components being studied for their possible effects on cancer.
Deflate Heart Disease
Olive oil lowers the levels of total blood cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol and triglycerides. At the same time it does not alter the levels of high density lipoprotein (HDL)-cholesterol (and may even raise them), which helps fend off the formation of fatty patches, further stimulating the elimination of LDLs.
Lower Blood Pressure
Recent studies indicate that regular consumption of olive oil can help decrease systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
Take Charge of Diabetes
It has been demonstrated that a diet rich in olive oil, low in saturated fats, moderately rich in carbohydrates and soluble fiber from fruit, vegetables, pulses and grains is the most effective approach for diabetics. It helps lower “bad” low-density lipoproteins while improving blood sugar control and enhancing insulin sensitivity.
Believe it or not, studies have shown that a Mediterranean (Med) diet with EVOO is a better weight loss diet than a low-fat diet. An article recently published by the OliveOilTimes cited a study that monitored those on a low-fat diet, a Med + EVOO diet, and a Med + nuts diet for 5 years. The results were striking.
Those on the Med + EVOO diet lost an average of 1.9 lbs, those on the Med + nuts diet lost an average of 0.88 lbs - and those on the low-fat diet lost an average of 1.3 lbs. It looks like the EVOO makes a difference.
Waste circumference increased for the Med + EVOO diet by 0.85cm, 0.37cm for those on the Med + nuts diet, and 1.2cm on the low fat diet.
For those looking to lose that little bit extra, EVOO may be worth a try (just don't measure it by the length of your waistband).
Uproot Rheumatoid Arthritis
Although the reasons still aren't fully clear, recent studies have proven that people with diets containing high levels of olive oil are less likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis.
A high consumption of olive oil appears to improve bone mineralization and calcification. It helps calcium absorption and so plays an important role preventing and reducing pain from osteoporosis.
Ramp Up Blood Circulation
Loading up on EVOO allows the circulatory benefits of EVOO to flow through your body. Olive oil improves blood circulation to all areas of the body, which improves all aspects of life (including your sex life).
Studies have shown that indulging in EVOO helps reduce (and in some cases protects against) the decline in cognitive ability that comes with some diseases like Alzheimers.
For many working professionals, job stress is just an every day fact of life. Obviously you can't stop working, but there are little tricks out there to help with stress - and replacing trans fat consumption with EVOO is one of them.
According to research from the University of Navarra and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (cited by the Olive Oil Times), diets high in EVOO can improve mental health. The aim of the Spanish study was to find out what parts of a diet impact stroke, heart disease and other ailments. The researchers followed 12,059 Navarra university graduates for six years, recording whatever information they could about their volunteers' diets and medical histories. One of interesting findings was that none of the graduates were suffering from depression at the start of the study - but 657 were by the end. Obviously, the researchers were curious as to why. Through combing through their data, they uncovered that those subjects who ate a lot of trans fat increased their risk of depression by 48% compared to those who didn't. Another interesting finding was that diets containing large amounts of olive oil and poly-saturated fats correlated with low rates of depression.
Those findings line up with another Spanish study which found that those who adhered to a Mediterranean style diet containing high amounts of olive oil, fruit, beans and veggies reduced their risk of depression by 30%.
Tons of studies out there (like this one from WebMD) have shown that eating too much trans fat can cause depression. If you're looking to lighten up, try going EVOO instead. You might be surprised at how great you feel after a while.
Black Garlic Health Perks
Here are some of the health benefits that come with the tangy zip of eating black garlic:
Cancer and Cholesterol Reduction
Through being fermented for a month long, black garlic has much higher concentrations of the compound S-allycystein (a natural part of fresh garlic that stems from the amino acid cystein) than regular garlic. Healthmad.com reports that the compound is responsible for lowering cholesterol and the risk of cancer.
A Japanese study completed in 2007 suggests that the use of black garlic can reduce the size of tumours found on laboratory mice. However, there's still a lack of evidence to confirm that the same effect occurs on humans.
Black garlic has antifungal, antimicrobial and antibiotic agents within it's active ingredient allicin. S-allycystein has been proven to help the body absorb accilin faster, in turn helping to bolster protection from infection.
Traditional garlic is loaded with antioxidants. And black garlic has twice as much! According to OrganicAuthority.com, antioxidants fend off disease from attacking the body's cells, and may even slow down the aging process. Because black garlic has so many antioxidants, the abundance helps protect against free radical cell damage that can cause Alzheimers, heart disease, circulatory damage and rheumatoid arthritis.
Dripping with Vitamins
Black garlic is loaded with tons of vitamins including:
Manganese: Great for helping build a healthy bone structure, bone metabolism; and creating key enzymes for building bones.
Vitamin B6: Assists in protecting the immune system. The vitamin also benefits the body's metabolism, hormone control, and prevent skin conditions and kidney disorders - to name a few.
Vitamin C: Vitamin C helps protect against immune system deficiencies, cardiovascular and eye disease, prenatal health problems, and even skin wrinkling.
Selenium: This mineral is key to cognitive functioning and fertility!
Phosphorus: Phosphorus has many health benefits, not the least of which is maintaining healthy bones and teeth.
Copper: Helps develop collagen within the body, bolsters iron absorption and energy production.
Vitamin B1: Otherwise known as Thiamine, this vitamin plays an important role in keeping the nervous and cardiovascular system healthy.
Calcium: Calcium is widely known for building and maintaining strong bones. But Calcium is also essential for keeping the body's heart, muscles and nervous system healthy.
Many chefs go through painstaking efforts to weave both ingredients into the meals they prepare. We've made it easy: just sprinkle on some of our Black Garlic-Infused EVOO. You won't go back once you've had a taste.