EN on Foods

October, 2012 Issue

Olives: Beyond the Oil

Olives are the fruit of the Olea europea tree. There are thousands of cultivars, but only a few are grown abundantly, both for olives and olive oil. A few important cultivars are arbequina, bosana, kalamata, manzanilla, and mission. Some olives may be eaten right from the tree, but most commercially sold olives are cured with water, brine, or lye. Regardless of variety and processing, olives are high in healthy, cholesterol-lowering monounsaturated fats and are rich in many health-protective nutrients, including an array of antioxidants.

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