What makes olive oil and balsamic vinegar so healthy?
Oleocanthal, a component of olive oil, has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. This compound acts similarly to the drug ibuprofen by inhibiting the cyclooxygenase enzyme. Balsamic vinegar assists in healing tissues with anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties.
Free Radical Neutralization
The human body employs oxidation reactions to produce energy. Unfortunately, these reactions give rise to cell-damaging molecules known as “free radicals”, which contribute to premature aging, hardening of arterial walls, and a range of diseases (including cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s). The best defense is the “antioxidant”, a molecule which neutralizes free radicals, and which abounds in both olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Olive oil and balsamic vinegar both help reduce bad (low-density) cholesterol and raise good (high-density) cholesterol.
Insulin Sensitivity Boost
By increasing the sensitivity of cells to insulin, olive oil and balsamic vinegar help the body use it more efficiently. Less is required to lower a given amount of glucose, resulting in a lower concentration of insulin in the blood. This helps prevent cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and obesity.
The polyphenols in olive oil and balsamic vinegar stimulate the activity of pepsin, a primary digestive enzyme, and enhance the absorption of amino acids.