Top 5 Benefits of Drinking Olive Oil in the Morning

Certainly, we have all heard of the Mediterranean Diet and an anti-inflammatory diet with all of the health benefits it offers, like lowering the risk of heart disease, weight loss, and increasing longevity.

One of the backbones of the Mediterranean diet is olive oil. Olive oil helps regulate blood sugar levels, reduces the risk of heart disease, aids in weight loss, and improves digestion. There are so many anti-inflammatories and antioxidants found in virgin olive oil, and this is one of the reasons consuming olive oil is significant when trying to improve your wellness.

What are the benefits of drinking olive oil in the morning?

Increasingly, olive oil is being linked to improvement in wellness and health, so here are my Top 5 reasons you should start increasing your intake of extra virgin olive oil today!

1. Increases Longevity:

A breakthrough research study in January 2022 showed that people who had a higher intake of olive oil had increased longevity versus people who rarely or never consumed olive oil.

Researchers found that there was a significantly decreased risk of multiple debilitating and common chronic medical conditions. This study noticed a decrease in the risk of cancer mortality, cardiovascular disease mortality, and neurodegenerative disease (for example Alzheimer’s) mortality.

So not only does drinking olive oil decrease the risk of debilitating conditions which means a better quality of life but drinking more olive oil was found to also prolong lifespans. There is still a tremendous need for additional research in learning more about how olive oil increases longevity and decreases the risk the mortality. The best time to consume olive oil is in the morning as it helps prime your body for the normal physiological stress likely to encounter during the day. Many chronic conditions are linked to inflammation, and triggers of inflammation if poor diet and environmental stressors. By drinking olive oil in the morning, it prepares the body for these unintended daytime stressors that directly take years off our lives.

Dr. David Sinclair, a pioneer, and co-director of the Center for Biology of Aging Research at Harvard Medical School describes in the below video the potential link between olive oil and longevity. It is likely that olive oil activates a longevity enzyme called SIRT1, similarly to resveratrol (an antioxidant found in grapes). Namely, one of the explanations for the benefits seen in the Mediterranean diet and Blue zones.

2. Plenty of Polyphenols:

Polyphenols are big powerhouse compounds for tackling antioxidant stress. There are a lot of high-caliber studies that have shown that consumption of foods rich in polyphenols is linked to protection against many common diseases and chronic conditions.

It is believed that they are like “scavenger hunters”, blocking or combating free radicals that form during periods of stress within our bodies. Biological stress can be caused by illness, cancer, environmental toxins, poor mental health, hormone imbalances, and consumption of a poor diet. We face most biological stressors during the day as opposed to at night when our body makes an active attempt to rejuvenate.

Also, women who consumed more extra virgin olive oil were shown to have an improvement in their bone density compared to women who had not, even when considering consumption of vitamin D and calcium according to many research findings. There was a 2018 research study that made this key finding, and it is believed that this benefit is due to an anti-inflammatory process. So drink just a bit of olive oil in the morning and prime your body against any of the biological stressors it may experience during the day, but this is especially important for women due to the risk of osteoporosis which increases based on family history, age, and medical history.

3. Helps Regulate Blood Sugar Level:

Olive oil has been found to improve your body’s response to insulin which decreases the risk of developing diabetes. When you drink olive oil in the morning on an empty stomach, it helps your blood sugar level become more stable throughout the day. This is important because an unstable blood sugar level for prolonged periods of time can lead to conditions like heart disease and diabetes, which are increasingly prevalent in the United States and many developed countries around the world.

The health benefits of just a small consumption of olive oil in the morning daily along with a healthy balanced diet with good fiber intake are significant in combating fluctuating blood sugars which are experienced most during the daytime due to activity, cortisol level changes, and meal consumption.

Krave Wellness Benefits of Drinking Olive Oil in the Morning. Helps improve cholesterol, improves longevity, helps regulate blood sugars, contains polyphenols, aids in weight loss, and improves digestion.

4. Improves Cholesterol Level:

Increased levels of LDL (the bad cholesterol) are linked to worsening cardiovascular disease risk, but olive oil is a monounsaturated fat that has been shown to help decrease our LDL levels. Extra virgin oil in particular has a significant amount of oleic acid which is an omega-9 fatty acid. Research studies have shown that oleic acid has been found to help increase our HDL levels (the good cholesterol). Higher HDL levels decrease the risk of cardiovascular and heart disease. So, this means it has two benefits for our overall cholesterol profile.

These healthy fats help protect the heart from damage caused by inflammation from bad cholesterol while also helping to increase good cholesterol levels, further highlighting the importance of the anti-inflammatory benefits found in olive oil. By drinking olive oil in the morning, this helps to better maintain a good cholesterol ratio during the day, as well as helps amplify the benefits of cardio exercise.

5. Aids in Digestion and Weight Loss:

Drinking extra virgin olive oil in the morning on an empty stomach has been shown to aid your digestive system. It helps your body break down food and aid in absorbing nutrients like vitamins and minerals more effectively. This is especially helpful for people who suffer from constipation and other digestive issues. The healthy fats, like oleic acid, found in extra virgin olive oil help promote satiety (feeling fuller faster) and reduces cravings. There is some evidence also that the antioxidants found in olives can help burn fat and aid in weight loss. 

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Drinking olive oil in the morning is a great way to start your day with some bonus health benefits and will definitely improve your health and wellness. Olive oil can help your digestive system, aid in weight loss, improve blood sugar levels, and decrease your risk of heart disease. So, next time you reach for a cup of coffee, try pouring yourself one to two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil instead (or too)!

Antioxidants and Anti-inflammatory Foods that Promote Weight Loss

Many people are thinking about the extra pounds that we, unfortunately, gained over the long winter period. Certainly, the pandemic did not help that situation and perhaps we found that our New Year weight loss resolution just fell through. So here are some excellent foods that are packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients that will help with both weight loss and wellness. You will be one step closer to your vacation!

Boost Weight Loss & Wellness With These Powerful Antioxidants and Anti-Inflammatory Foods

1. Berries –

Berries, such as bilberry, blueberry, cranberry, raspberry, chokeberry, and strawberry, are loaded with polyphenols that promote antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. My favorite polyphenol is flavonoids, like anthocyanins, which are perfect for helping during periods of inflammation and stress. 

Berries also contain resveratrol which has been linked to lower inflammation and cellular repair. Berries have been shown in many research studies to improve our cholesterol, lower our blood pressure, and improve our metabolism. A bonus is that many are also high in fiber.

2. Walnuts – 

Walnuts are mainly known as being a great source of omega-3 fatty acids which is excellent for decreasing our cardiovascular risk. They are packed with a high amount of mono and polyunsaturated fats. But a more interesting finding a few years ago showed people in a trial who consumed a walnut smoothie versus those who didn’t have both a decreased appetite and a greater ability to resist unhealthy food cues. It is believed that walnuts activate a part of our brain involved in appetite and impulse control – the insula.

Walnuts are also great sources for magnesium and vitamin E, so add this to your breakfast or as a snack option in between meals. 

3. Avocado – 

Although avocados seem to be a fad currently, they are great for weight loss and wellness. Avocados are high in fiber which helps you feel fuller faster and are great for helping us maintain a regular digestive process. Avocados are packed with numerous vitamins and minerals – especially those that are known for being largely antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, for example, vitamins C and E.

Krave Wellness Antioxidants and Anti-inflammatory Foods that help promote weight loss. Turmeric, leafy greens, avocado, walnuts and berries are great examples.

4. Turmeric –

Turmeric is a staple to many cuisines across the world with his home rooted in Ayurveda, which is traditional Indian medicine. It is an excellent source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories because of a compound in it called curcumin. Curcumin has been linked to promoting weight loss and increasing your metabolism by improving your body’s response to insulin and helping increase energy burn-off. It may also be linked to increasing your body’s level of adiponectin which has a role in breaking down unhealthy fatty acids and improving your sugar levels.

5. Leafy Greens –

Kale, spinach, swiss chard, and arugula are great high nutrient leafy greens that are packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients that can help for weight loss. The biggest benefit I believe is beta carotene, vitamin C, and calcium in leafy greens, but they are also great sources of magnesium and folate. Calcium-rich foods have been linked to improving our metabolism and aid in burning off lingering fat more intensely. Add to this the fiber benefit which helps you feel fuller faster, leafy greens are a great pick to add to your daily diet

Interested in learning more about great foods that can reduce inflammation?

Check out our post about the health benefits of ginger and turmeric shots!

Best Teas for Digestion

There are several great tea varieties that can help improve your digestive system or help alleviate a digestive ailment you may be experiencing either chronically or once in a while. First recognizing whether your digestive problem is due to an underlying autoimmune condition or malabsorption is crucial, so I recommend having a thorough conversation with your health care provider especially if gastrointestinal symptoms are persistent. However, for those who are looking to help improve their digestive system, there are several digestive health benefits in teas.

Below are great teas that help with digestion:

Peppermint Tea

Peppermint tea is excellent herbal tea at helps soothe an upset stomach, especially when due to acid reflux. Peppermint is an herb that contains a compound called menthol which has been shown in research studies to improve many digestive issues. In addition to improving acid reflux, peppermint tea may help improve an inflammatory condition called irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). It has been linked to also decreasing a rare condition that causes esophageal spasms which cause bloating, belching, and heartburn.

A 2018 study in Nutrients found that peppermint oil showed a reported improvement in children with functional abdominal pain disorders. So there are many digestive benefits you can gain by drinking a few cups of peppermint tea. An additional bonus of peppermint tea is that it also has antimicrobial and antiviral benefits!

Ginger Tea

Ginger tea is a great tea that can improve digestive health for those who suffer from ingestion, nausea, or delayed stomach emptying. Gingerol is a compound found in ginger tea that helps stimulate stomach emptying and processing of nutrients. Gingerol and another compound found in ginger tea called shogaol act on brain receptors called 5-HT. This activity can help improve nausea experienced by chemotherapy, morning sickness due to pregnancy, and also motion sickness.

In addition to these benefits, ginger tea is a great anti-inflammatory and antioxidant source. It has a longstanding history of medicinal use.

Senna Tea

Senna is an herb that comes from the Cassia plant. This is a great digestive tea for those suffering from bloats of constipation. Senna has been well researched and contains a compound called sennoside. Sennoside helps promote intestinal contraction and aid in bowel movements. It is a highly effective laxative option.

Black Tea

Black tea leaves come from the Camellia sinensis plant, similar to white and green teas. Black tea aids in improving indigestion and gastric ulcers due to a compound called thearubigins. Thearubigins have been linked to suppressing inflammation, improving gastric emptying, and improving common indigestion causes. There’s one study that found that black tea helped treat and heal stomach ulcers in mice by suppressing inflammation.

Black tea also has polyphenols which are compounds that help support healthy gut bacteria/flora. A healthy gut flora is necessary for adequate digestion of nutrients but also for a balanced metabolism.

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Oolong Tea

Some studies have suggested that oolong tea when consumed can help with improving our digestive system and improve metabolism. It comes from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant, like white, green, and black tea but oolong tea undergoes different processing techniques. Oolong tea has antibacterial benefits and helps alleviate gastric acid reflux as it has a natural basic pH level, thereby counterbalancing those who have too much acid production in their stomachs.

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile tea has been shown to improve common digestive issues such as indigestion and gastric reflux. It’s most known for its calming and relaxing effects which are therapeutic as well. Chamomile tea also helps reduce bloating and ease gastrointestinal painful issues. This tea has also been found to reduce levels of pepsin which is necessary for protein breakdown in the stomach but too much pepsin can lead to acid reflux or gastritis.

Licorice Root Tea

Sometimes a part of a digestive tea blend, licorice root tea, is a great tea for digestion benefits. It has been used for centuries in Asia for the treatment of cough and digestive conditions. It can help soothe an upset stomach. Indeed, some may not be a fan of the anise-like, bitter taste but it is worth a try. Try adding lemon to counterbalance this if you like.

It has a significant number of flavonoids which are potent antioxidants. Licorice tea has been found to particularly be beneficial in preventing stomach ulcers by increasing the production of a compound called mucin which helps line and protect the stomach from gastric acid damage.

Fennel Tea

Fennel tea is a nice digestive aid that confers many health benefits for digestive issues.  It helps relax muscles in the digestive system which may help ease complaints such as cramping, bloating, and constipation. It also causes an increase in bile production which is helpful for those with malabsorption issues, as bile acid helps your intestine break down fatty compounds.

Looking for More Tea Inspiration?

If you love Green Tea, check out these Green Tea Shot recipes for some fresh ways to boost your energy, improve mental clarity, boost your immune system, promote weight loss, and aid in digestive issues.

Ever been curious about the differences between White Tea vs Green Tea? Explore the numerous health benefits and distinct qualities of each of these powerhouse teas here.

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