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January 14, 2020 • Healthy Eating & Nutrition

Fight Inflammation with Olive Oil


In an uplifting evaluation that proves the right foods can triumph over bad genes Spanish researchers found that the potent antioxidant phenol compounds in extra virgin olive oil stifle the activity of several genes that promote inflammation.

They fed 20 study subjects controlled breakfasts on different occasions. Some were fed a breakfast enriched with high phenol (virgin) olive oil and others a breakfast enriched with low phenol (refined) olive oil.  When comparing the genetic activity of the high vs. low phenol group, they identified 98 separate genes that were differentially expressed, including a number of pro inflammatory genes whose activity was significantly blunted. (BMC Genomics, April 2010)

Genes are not destiny! They are in constant, dynamic interaction with our environments, especially the foods we eat, and the right foods can bring out the best in them.

Here’s how YOU can bring in all the right foods:

  • As many fruits and veggies as possible – the  superstars include: avocados, tomatoes, garlic, onions (red best), cruciferous family (broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, watercress), asparagus, red/orange/yellow, bell peppers, spinach, other dark salad greens/lettuce, carrots, sweet potatoes, berries – any variety (frozen are cheaper and just as healthy),  pomegranates, any whole citrus, cantaloupes, mangoes, kiwi, apples, red/purple grapes, cherries, plums
  • Monounsaturated fats as your main fats (extra virgin olive oil, canola oil, nuts/seeds, and avocados)
  • 100% whole grain products. Physically intact grains are best.
  • Omega 3 fats regularly (oily fish, omega 3 eggs, walnuts, canola oil, whole soy foods)
  • Any variety of beans/legumes – daily best
  • The healthy protein packages – fish, shellfish, poultry, low-fat or fat-free dairy products, nuts, beans, soy, omega 3 eggs
  • Water as your beverage of choice

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