I love EVOO (and apologies for my dietitian jargon… EVOO being Extra Virgin Olive Oil !)
I am quiet liberal with my use EVOO at home.
A good Australian EVOO (and there are many!) goes so well in a salad dressing or splashed over some crunchy vege (We often have blanched broccolini and snow peas with a splash of EVVO, balsamic glaze, feta and slivered almonds tossed through.. yum).
The health benefits of EVOO are widely known. EVOO is ✔️high in mono-unsaturated fatty acids (known to have a positive effect on cholesterol levels) and ✔️high in antioxidants (Vitamin E, as well as phenolic compounds oleuropein and oleocanthal).
The Mediterranean style diet, which includes EVOO, as been associated with low rates of cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer, as well as increased life expectancy.
Olive oil is produced by the pressing of the olive fruit and is graded, depending on the processing involved. The more unrefined the oil (ie. The less processing by heat or chemical treatments), the greater the health benefits due to more of the nutrients from the fruit being retained. EVOO is made from the first pressing of the olives, using a cold-pressed method.
Bare in mind... light or extra light varieties often simply refer to the flavour or colour and are more refined.
I also use EVOO to cook with.
Despite common myths, EVOO has been found to be the safest and most stable oil to cook with. The more refined oils and oils containing less antioxidants are much more likely to breakdown & form harmful compounds during cooking.
So EVOO is the gold medal of oils in my opinion, and is also bloody tasty!