A new study by a team of Harvard nutritionists has shown that olive oil consumption can significantly slash a person’s risk of dying prematurely from a much wider range of diseases, The Australian reports.
The findings, which were reported in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, showed that consuming just a teaspoon of olive oil daily was associated with a 12 percent reduced risk of death from all causes, compared with those who rarely or never consumed olive oil.
The study analysed the diet habits of 60,582 women and 31,801 men, all participants in the ongoing Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study from 1990 when all the recruits were free of cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Every four years during a 28-year follow-up, participants were asked about their diet habits, including how much fat and oil they were consuming.
By the end of the study period there had been 36,856 deaths overall, with olive oil eaters clearly faring much better than those who avoided it.
Study author, Marta Guasch-Ferre, who is a research scientist at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health’s department of nutrition, said the standout finding was the connection between olive oil and fewer deaths from degenerative brain disease.
“Alzheimer’s disease has high morbidity and mortality rates and yet there are few preventative strategies people can employ,” she said.
“It could be something that proves valuable in terms of public health.”
Source: The Australian.