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Is Olive Oil Fraud Really A Thing?

The North American Olive Association will have you believing that reports of olive oil fraud are…well, fake. But what does the latest science and industry news say?

News About Adulteration Of Olive Oil

The idea that olive oil could be adulterated began when UC Davis researchers released a study analyzing 22 different olive oil brands—which included imported and the most popular brands sold in the US. In addition to many of the oils having high levels of peroxide (an indication they were rancid), 3 olive oils tested were nearly 100% soybean oil and another 3 contained sunflower and safflower oils.

Food Quality Preference, Mar 2011

Now, the reason this is disturbing is that pure olive oil, specifically EVOO, has high levels of health-promoting plant chemicals and monounsaturated fatty acids not found as prevalent in the other kinds of oils. Naturally, the olive industry was up in arms about this study and the media and bloggers went to town sharing about the fraudulent ways of the olive oil industry. The FDA went so far as to conduct an independent, peer-reviewed study testing 88 extra virgin olive oils directly off the shelves of Washington, D.C.-area retail outlets and found noextra virgin olive oil was mixed with other oils. Similarly, another study of nearly 200 olive oils analyzed in independent labs certified by the International Olive Council found that 98% of olive oil sold in the US is authentic.

J American Oil Chemists’ Society, Dec 2015

Confident Shopping For Olive Oil

So, this should mean that consumers can feel confident about their olive oil purchases, right? Well, some companies are making it foolproof for you by agreeing to be independently tested – brands like Pompeian, Star, Sprouts, Whole Foods, Goya and Primal Kitchen to name a few. So look out for those brands when you shop! It’s that easy.

So, now that you have confidence in several brands, please remember that even high-quality fats can go bad. Be sure to buy the smallest bottle possible and use it within 6 months. Store in a cool, dark, dry place. Refrigeration is not necessary!

Oh, by the way, Along the line of cancer nutrition news, you might find it fascinating that one study found individuals eating a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra virgin olive oil showed a 68% lower risk of breast cancer compared to those on a regular diet.

JAMA Int Med, Sep 2015

But Here is where it gets interesting: Olive oil was not significantly associated with lung cancer risk. Rather, consuming soybean and safflower oil—these oils are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, lowered lung cancer risk.

Int J Cancer, 2018

This is precisely why a personalized nutrition plan from My Nutrition IQ makes so much sense: You’ll learn which types of fats and oils are linked to your specific health concern so you can prepare your meals with the best kinds of fats for you and support your body in the best way. Now that’s really investing in your health, isn’t it?  

You can learn how to order your own personalized nutrition plan. It takes just a couple of minutes and BOOM! You’ll gain immediate access to all the info for a $14.95 one-time fee. If you do this, you won’t have to wonder if the foods you eat are truly supporting your health.

Healthy Oil Supplement Without The Fish

Finally, for those of you who are ready to take your health up a notch, but aren’t taking a high quality, plant-based omega, consider adding one to your diet. The dietitians at My Nutrition IQ recommend a product that contains no fish and has minimally processed oils and includes a variety of plant chemicals that may impact brain, skin, and hair health. Best of all, these vegan omegas have been thoroughly tested and are certified non-GMO and gluten-free.

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