Thinking that choosing only nonfat options will help you reach your weight loss goals? Think again! New research shows how olive oil can help us feel full.
Think that choosing only non-fat options will help you reach your weight loss goals? Think again! A new study shows just how important fats are in promoting satiety—the feeling of being full—during the day. And olive oil, a staple of the famous Mediterranean diet, took the lead.
Of course, not all fats are created equal. Here, we’re talking about healthy fats that have been shown to help protect our hearts and promote better blood sugar control when used instead of saturated or trans fats.
In the first part of the study, researchers gave participants low-fat yogurt enriched with one of four different fats (lard, butter, rapeseed oil, and olive oil) to eat every day, as a supplement to what they normally ate. Turns out the group who ate the olive oil yogurt reported feeling full more than any other group. And none of them had a change in body fat percentage or weight.
Olive oil: the smell makes us feel full?
In the second part of the study, the researchers found that it was the aromatic compounds in the olive oil that really made olive oil the standout winner out of the fats. They discovered this by giving one group plain yogurt and one group olive oil-scented yogurt (but without any of the real olive oil).
The group that had the plain yogurt ate more calories in the day than the group with the olive oil-scented yogurt, and also had less satiety hormone in their blood.
Using olive oil
Olive oil has a mid-to-low smoke point, so it can be used to cook with at lower temperatures, but cooking at higher temperatures can damage the oil and reduce its health benefits.
Looking for more ways to incorporate olive oil in your diet? Try these ideas.
- Drizzle some on top of cooked pasta dishes or homemade pizzas for an Italian-inspired flavour boost.
- Make a bread dip by combining it with balsamic vinegar.
- Use it in marinades, pestos, and dips.
- Try it as the base for a simple salad dressing. Add some vinegar or lemon juice, some spices, and you’re set!
To learn more about olive oil and how it compares to other types of cooking oils, check out our recent article “The Good Oil.”
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