What Are High Phenolic Olive Oils, and What Are They Good For?

La Panza Olive oil has an average count of 285 Polyphenols (based on our most recent testing- this blog will be updated as that testing on new harvests is returned.) If you've heard the term Polyphenols, but never quite understood what they were, or why it mattered, here is some info on how this measurement effects an oils health properties, and the best way to store High Phenolic Olive Oils. 


High Phenolic Olive Oils are those Olive Oils that contain a high percentage of phenolic compounds, called polyphenols which are directly related to the health benefits of olive oil. According to the EU Health Claim Labeling Regulation (432/2012), the claim may be used only for olive oil which contains at least 5mg of hydroxytyrosol and its derivatives (e.g. oleuropein complex and tyrosol) per 20g of olive oil. The beneficial effect for the consumers is obtained with a daily intake of 20g of olive oil (2tbs). This daily intake of high phenolic olive oil contributes to the protection of blood lipids from oxidative stress. UC Davis, Harvard University and many other research centers in the world embrace this idea and have backed it up with many researches over the last ten years.


Polyphenol – rich Olive Oils have been found to help:

· lower blood pressure

· protect the arteries from damage

· lower bad cholesterol

· reduce the risk for type II diabetes

· prevent many types of cancer

· prevent strokes

· fight premature aging

· decrease the risk for depression and dementia

· slow the progression of Alzheimer’s up to 40%

· reduce inflammations in the body


What are the phenolic compounds?


These are the organic compounds that are the by-products of plant synthesis and are known as phytochemicals. Polyphenols are regarded for their health promoting properties and are found in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes, beverages (coffee, tea and wine), fats (olive oil) as well as in spices. However, there are phenolic compounds unique to olive oil that only occur during the malaxation process. There are 36 known phenolic compounds in olive oil. The two most widely researched for their health protective benefits are Oleocanthal and Oleacein which are known for their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

The presence of Oleocanthal is indicated by the peppery effect on the back of the throat sometimes causing a cough reflex. Oleacein is known by the bitterness on the tongue. For people accustomed to purchasing olive oils from the super market, these characteristics of pepperiness and bitterness are often mistaken as a defect in the olive oil.


Phenolic content vary according to soil condition and weather patterns, olive variety, time of harvest (fruit maduration stage - the greener the olives the higher the phenolic content), milling procedures, etc. For example, bio-diversity within the grove adds to the richness of the soil and the nutrition available to the olive fruit. Rains, drought or winds have greater or lesser impact on phenolic content and amount of olive oil produced depending on when they occur during olive fruit maturation.


What's in it for you?

If you are purchasing a high phenolic olive oil for its health benefits, you should treate it as a food supplement , you have to consume it daily and preferably raw on your foods and salads. If you want to cook or fry with olive oil you can use a more affordable Extra Virgin Olive Oil and keep you high phenolic EVOO for your daily self-care ritual.  

It is recommended to use it quickly the fresher the oil, the more potent the benefit.  Because of our patented pouch, our oils are fresher, for longer.


Light, heat, air and time are the enemies of any olive oil. Our pouches are airtight, and allow no light to penetrate, making our oil the ideal high phenolic oil for your health benefits. Interested in learning more about self care rituals? Learn all of the ins and outs of drinking olive oil here.

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