Olive Oil

Last Updated: August 8, 2023

Olive oil is an oil derived from olives and is used for cooking. Like many cooking oils, it contains a variety of bioactive molecules beyond oleic acid (its fatty acid), such as squalene, and is seen as one of the healthier cooking oils for foods with moderate smoke points.

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Olive Oil is most often used for


Olive oil is a cooking oil extracted from olives, and is a staple of the Mediterranean Diet. It consists mostly of monounsaturated fats, primarily oleic acid (named after the olive oil itself). It also contains various anti-oxidant and anti-microbial compounds.

There are different forms of processing for olive oil, and olive oil typically known as 'Extra-Virgin' has the highest levels of beneficial ingredients in it due to minimal processing.

Some compounds in olive oil are heat and light sensitive and can be degraded when introduced to these stimuli. Olive oil should be stored in a cool, dark area to preserve these nutritional compounds.

Olive oil exhibits various smoke points ranging from 320 °F (160 °C) for Extra Virgin Olive, 420 °F (215 °C) for Virgin, and 460 °F (238 °C) for Light and Extra light. The lesser processed oils exhibit lower smoke points.

What are other names for Olive Oil?
Note that Olive Oil is also known as:
  • EVOO (Extra-Virgin Olive Oil)
Olive Oil should not be confused with:
  • Other cooking oils

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