On top of pizza, in a Mediterranean salad, alone, or in a martini, olives have long been loved and cherished across the world. Cured to enhance flavor and taste, did you know that olives are one of the world’s healthiest foods? Those who grow ‘olives in the garden’ do so for the many delicious and life-lengthening qualities available in these tiny vibrant fruits.
Olives have been called a superfood by those who have recognized all their amazing health benefits. These super powers include: an amazing source of Vitamin A & E and polyphenols- a powerful antioxidant; the ability to repair connective tissues, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties and being particularly high in protein and good fats.
We are not talking about your ordinary canned olives here, don’t be confused. While canning olives, additives such as lye for softening as well as an iron compound called ferrous gluconate for coloring are added, deleting important nutrients. If possible, you want to find sun-dried, oil-cured olives brined with salt for best results.
Olives are the highest mucous dissolvers of any food as they bind to acids or acid-forming potentials in the body for removal. When raw and slow-cured olives are used on the skin, they help to erase fine lines on the face by strengthening the connective tissues as well as healing the circulatory system, erasing small blood vessels from view. The oil of the olive is full of squalene, an important cholesterol pre-cursor, which also helps to keep the skin smooth and the complexion bright.
Did you know, more than any other fruit, olives are highest in both over-all minerals and calcium, containing over twice as much as oranges, as well as being extremely high in magnesium, amino acids and omega-3 and 6 fatty acids? Cured olives soothe mucous membranes better than any other fruit or vegetable and help to release the mucous from the body through its extremely alkaline fat content, canceling out body acidity and leading mucous from the body. This makes them great for healing ulcers, sinus inflammation, allergies and other ailments which address swollen or irritated mucous membranes.
Olives are also extremely high in protein, containing the same protein-fat ratio as red meat and can be a great addition to any work out or diet-regimen. The oil of this amazing fruit can be a wonderful addition to smoothies as it helps to slow down the absorption of fruit sugars in the body, helpful for diabetics or anyone who needs to keep an eye on blood sugar.
The best olives to look for are cured -either with vinegar or water-cured or ‘sea-salted.’ You’ll notice the ‘good’ olives have a very distinct taste next to their canned cousins. Because of the intense flavor of the olive straight off the vine, they cannot be eaten directly after picking, but must be carefully treated in order to bring out the scrumptious and body-enhancing benefits. Time to enter the garden of life and benefit from the amazing health properties of the olive. Spoken of in many metaphors in ancient texts, apparently, the olive tree holds much in the way of wisdom yet to be revealed for the human body and mind, now a few more of those secrets are known.
Written by: Stasia Bliss