Olive oil is an important ingredient in the Mediterranean diet (known to be one of the healthiest diets in the world). Today, olive oil can be found not only in Mediterranean countries but globally as well. This natural oil is known for its culinary benefits (as it makes your food taste good) and for its medicinal values.
We speak to Faridah Hanin Bt Ismail, Pharmacist at My Olive Pharmacy in Bandar Bukit Tinggi, Klang on the many benefits of olive oil.
1Twenty80: What are the benefits of consuming olive oil?
Faridah Hanin Bt Ismail: First of all, we need to understand where olive oil comes from. To put it simply, olive oil is naturally obtained from the olive fruit. The oil is produced through various methods and one of it is through cold pressing. It is commonly used in cooking, that includes frying or as a salad dressing.
Apart from that, olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids and consuming it regularly can benefit your health in many ways.
THE BENEFITS OF OLIVE OIL
- Helps to relieve constipation.
- Polyphenols in olive oil has anti-inflammatory effects. This helps to maintain hair, skin, joint and heart health.
- Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) can help to lower blood pressure, improve the function of blood vessels and reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease.
1Twenty80: Do all olive oil taste the same?
Faridah: Definitely not! Not all olive oils taste the same. Different types of olives such as young olives, semi-ripe olives and matured olives have extremely different types of taste. Some are rich and tangy, while others may be bitter with a pungent flavour.
Refined olive oil does not have any flavour, while virgin olive oil and EVOO have its own taste to it. However, it solely depends on how young and mature the olives are. Young and green olives have the most intense flavour (bitter and pungent).
Quote: First of all, we need to understand where olive oil comes from. to put it simply, olive oil is naturally obtained from olive fruits. the oil is produced through various methods and one of it is through cold pressing.
1Twenty80: What are the differences between cooking olive oil, virgin olive oil and extra virgin olive oil?
Faridah: Firstly, we have to understand that there are many categories of olive oil which are the basic olive oil that are usually used for cooking, virgin olive oil as well as extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). Each kind of oil has different amounts of polyphenols contained in it. Polyphenols is an organic chemical that can be found in EVOO.
- Cooking Olive Oil: Is a blend of refined olive oil with a combination of 10 to 20 percent of virgin olive oil (which is what gives it a good taste). Olive oil that is used for cooking contains low levels of polyphenols.
- Virgin Olive Oil: The natural juice from overmatured olives that has an oily flavour to it and a moderate content of polyphenol, which is about 50 to 150 parts per million (ppm) of polyphenols.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Made from the cold pressed process of matured olives with 150 to 250 ppm of polyphenols.
1Twenty80: Which grade of olive is the healthiest?
Faridah: High polyphenol extra virgin olive oil and often referred to as premium extra virgin olive oil is the best to consume as it provides plenty of health benefits.
1Twenty80: How is olive oil different from other oils?
Faridah: Every oil has its own benefits.
- Fish and algae oil contains Omega-3.
- Sunflower oil contains Omega-6.
- However, olive oil contains Omega-3, Omega-6 and Omega 9 (Oleic acid). To add on, EVOO contains a good amount of oleic acid and polyphenols which is what makes it different from other oils.
Quote: High polyphenol extra virgin olive oil and often referred to as premium extra virgin olive oil is the best to consume as it provides plenty of health benefits.
1Twenty80: Does olive oil contain cholesterol?
Faridah: Due to its high concentration of monounsaturated fat, olive oil does not contain cholesterol. As a matter of fact, it can help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol in your body.
1Twenty80: Can children enjoy the benefits of olive oil too? How young can they start?
Faridah: Olive oil, especially extra virgin is good for you. Children are definitely able to enjoy olive oil. They can start consuming EVOO as early as they start eating solid food.
Tip: Children are advised to take about three to five milliliters (ml) which is about one tablespoon (tsp) of EVOO before breakfast.
1Twenty80: Is there a specific method on how to consume olive oil?
Faridah: There are many ways to consume olive oil and enjoy its taste. Some may like to have it with a slice of bread or others may want to include it in their cooking such as in soups, drizzled over fish, salads and more. Another option would be to consume olive oil directly.
Tip: For adults, drink 22 milliliters (ml) which is about two tablespoon (tsp) of EVOO daily to keep oneself healthy and it is best to consume on an empty stomach.
Quote: Children are definitely able to enjoy olive oil. they can start consuming evoo as early as they start eating solid food.
1Twenty80: What is the best way to store olive oil?
Faridah: Olive oils especially EVOO should be stored in dark glass bottles and never in transparent bottles as it is to protect the oil from oxidation. This is because direct light can destroy the polyphenols in it and it will go rancid eventually.
1Twenty80: What is your advice to our readers on consuming olive oil?
Faridah: Consume high polyphenol EVOO (usually kept in dark glass bottle) and always look for third party qualification or accreditation on the packaging as well.
Headline: COMING BACK AFTER A BREAK
Standfirst: Whether planned or unplanned, coming back to the workforce might have its challenges
There are many reasons for someone to take a career break and this could range from retrenchment, motherhood or even illness. No matter the reason, getting back on your feet may be a little challenging. Additionally, being away from the workplace may have dulled your skills and this may also impact your confidence.
To help you with that, here are some tips to help you on your transition back to the workforce.
#1: HAVE A GOOD THINK
Take some time to really think about the kind of work that you want and also your needs. Do you want to go back to the same role prior to leaving the workforce or something out of the box? Additionally, write down why you’d like to start working again. Your needs would include salary requirements, flexible working hours, childcare and others. Did you learn something new on your break? Add that into your resume if it’s relevant!
#2: DO SOME HOMEWORK
Refresh your memory on your industry by doing some research such as salary ranges or roles that would suit you. Let your ex-colleagues know you’re making a comeback because this can help you get potential jobs and also update you on your chosen industry! Don’t be shy and ask for tips on how to get back to the workforce as well!
#3: SPRUCE UP YOUR SKILLS
After some time away, your industry would have changed quite a bit with new things added every day! The tools may stay the same but there may have been massive upgrades. Take a class or perhaps follow an online tutorial to top up your skills which can also go into your resume! Subscribe to newsletters and podcasts as well to shore up your knowledge of the industry.
#4: UPDATE YOUR CV
Your CV (Curriculum Vitae) or resume is how a recruiter would know whether you’re right for the job or perhaps have skills that could benefit the workplace in another department. There are plenty of online resources that could coach you on how to update your CV, common interview questions and even how to dress for an interview.
K.I.S.S stands for Keep It Simple, Silly and this is in reference to when the recruiter is asking about your extended absence from the workplace. A simple explanation such as “It’s important for me to be with my child until nursery school” or “I was caring for a sick relative” is perfectly fine and try to steer the conversation to what you did before leaving the workforce.
Reference: The Balance Careers