Extra virgin olive oil is the only oil made primarily of monunsaturated fatty acids, with up to 80% of the oil consisting of oleic acid. In fact, extra virgin olive oil is our best available source of oleic acid. Oleic acid is vitally important to human health. While present in many organs, it is the main fatty acid found in the human brain.
Many studies have been performed on oleic acid, and it is widely understood to provide vital nourishment to every cell in the body, making it critical to improving cell health and preventing premature cell death. Oleic acid is known to reduce bad cholesterol levels while maintaining protective HDL levels. It can help reduce inflammation by making corticosteroids more available to the body. Oleic acid may also play a role in cancer prevention.
In addition to the many benefits oleic acid provides, it is also cited for its ability to improve the protective effects of tocopherols, a set of compounds with antioxidant properties.