Antiatherogenic components of olive oil.


Visioli F




Curr Atheroscler Rep


Olive oil is the principal source of fat in the Mediterranean diet, which has been associated with a lower incidence of coronary heart disease and certain cancers. Olive oil is characterized by a high proportion of monounsaturated oleic acid, but the main peculiarity of extra-virgin oil is the presence of remarkable quantities of phenolic compounds, notably hydroxytyrosol and oleuropein, that provide high stability and strong taste. Recently, several studies have demonstrated that olive oil phenolics are powerful antioxidants, both in vitro and in vivo, and exert additional potent biologic activities that could partially account for the observed cardioprotective effects of the Mediterranean diet.