Are they the same? Are they different? Let’s take a look!
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) is the highest grade of olive oil, where it has been extracted from the fruit of the olive tree without the use of heat or chemicals. Given the fact that this oil process is less tampered with, levels of Vitamin E, biophenols and squalene are maximised and given this natural process, EVOO does not contain what we call, trans fats (a saturated fat that can elevate blood cholesterol levels).
Olive Oil has undertaken refining processes which include high heat, chemicals and pressure that in fact, render the oil to ensure that it is suitable for human consumption. This allows it to fall behind from EVOO, as it is not as natural and is fairly processed. Whilst EVOO and Olive Oil have the same fat content, Olive Oil does not contain natural antioxidants and it is, of course high in fats that elevate cholesterol.
But… if Extra Virgin Olive Oil is the best oil, is it still recommended for cooking, given its natural properties?
- EVOO contains low levels of polyunsaturated fats, which are seen to be less stable when heated.
- EVOO contains a high level of antioxidants, which provides it with a high oxidative stability. This in turn, enables the antioxidants to protect the oil from breaking down to degradation by products when heated.
So, in summary, EVOO is a lot more natural compared to Olive Oil and it is a safe, stable and desirable oil to cook with at home for all of your needs. Ditch your other oils and stick to EVOO ☺ We love it!