The 7 Wonders of Olive Oil: Stronger Bones, Cancer Prevention, Higher Brain Function, and Other Medical Miracles of the Green Nectar
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About the Author
Cécile Le Galliard is a French expert in olive oil tasting. She is a recent graduate from the University of Jaén (Spain) in virgin olive oil tasting. She was selected by the International Olive Oil Council as the French candidate for the training and is now recognized as a skilled professional in her field. Cécile is now a web journalist on www.jusdolive.fr and works as a consultant in olive oil, specializing in the creation of oil cellars, training, and tasting, for professionals.
"There is little doubt about the health benefits of olive oil, with much still to be revealed and clinically proven. As a graduate of Italy's Slow Food founded university of science and gastronomy, knowing food's sensory qualities, provenance, and authenticity are an everyday mantra. Alice and Cécile's book provides insight into all things olive oil and sets you on a path to understand why 'good olive oil should remind you of a garden.'"
--Lee-Anne Mundy, accredited practicing dietitian and graduate of the University of Science and Gastronomy
--Midwest Book Review "Academic, scientific, and enthusiastic, this book makes strong arguments for incorporating olive oil into your daily life. Alice Alech and Cécile Le Galliard's well-researched The 7 Wonders of Olive Oil is an enthusiastic presentation of the story behind that bottle of olive oil in the cupboard--a more complex item than people might think.
Virgin olive oil, the book reveals, is the only food product required to pass sensory testing before it can be bottled and sold. There are actually panels of professional taste testers who sip, assess, and classify the oils. And scientific studies suggest that this oil could have health benefits far beyond what was previously thought.
The book is broken down into three parts that cover the history of olive oil and how it's made, scientific evidence of its potential health benefits, and consumer guidance on buying and using the 'green nectar.' The main focus is on the middle section, where exciting studies of olive oil's impact on health and wellness are discussed, including its potential to treat and prevent arthritis, cancer, heart attacks, and Alzheimer's disease.
A wealth of practical information is given, from advice on what kinds of olive oil to use with different foods--including a number of delicious recipes--to what to look for on the label when choosing a bottle from the numerous choices at the store.
Alech and Le Galliard show their passion for their subject with their enthusiastic tone and through the extensive research they present, through both secondary sources and direct interviews with researchers. While occasionally it is difficult to tell if exuberant statements are opinions or actual results from a scientific study, there is plenty of evidence here to suggest that olive oil and its many components have great potential health benefits and that further research is a worthy endeavor.
This book leans toward an academic summary of the history and production of olive oil and its positive effects on health, but it also contains much for those who simply want to learn more about incorporating olive oil into their daily diets."
--CHRISTINE CANFIELD, Foreword Reviews
"The 7 Wonders of Olive Oil by Alice Alech and Cecile Le Galliard is an elegantly written book by two authors who are deeply knowledgeable about their subject and who clearly love their topic. The book covers all the widely known benefits of olive oil plus a few more. It takes the reader from the use of olives from Minoan Crete to the tables of fine, health-conscious dining of today, all infused with an understated but scholarly rendition, that draws the reader into subconscious agreement with the authors' authoritative and persuasive perspectives.
The health benefits of olive oil is told lucidly, without medical hoopla or complicated exposition. Stronger bones; cancer prevention; higher brain function; natural anti-inflammatory properties; skin rejuvenation; cardio-vascular benefits; and reduction of the risk of diabetes. There are short sections on: the roots of olive oil in Mediterranean history; understanding fats; and the production of olive oil from olives. A bonus is the section on understanding the label and on buying Extra-Virgin olive oil. Another section deals with the different categories of olive oil and yet another offers the reader some suggestions on the use of olive oil in the kitchen.
There is a quiz on olive oil. And for those hungering for more, there is a comprehensive glossary of terms as used by the experts on olive oil production and analytics. An extensive reference section can direct the new olive oil aficionado to the authors' trove of olive's fountain of knowledge.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and if you are interested in any aspect of olive and olive oil--history, production, use, health benefits--you will too."
--Tulsi Dyal Singh, MD
"The 7 Wonders of Olive Oil is one of the best books I've read! The authors do a wonderful job on educating the reader on the history, biochemical characteristics, and production of olive oil. The chapter on cancer prevention was fascinating to me as a practicing oncologist. Most important, this book is evidence-based, well referenced, and scientifically sound. Belongs in everyone's library."
--Mark A. Marinella, MD, FACP Board Certified, Medical Oncology/Internal Medicine, Dayton Physicians Network, Cancer Care, Dayton, OH, USA, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Wright State University School of Medicine, Dayton, OH, USA, President/Founder, Phytodense Foods, LLC, Dayton, OH, USA, Author of: Metronomic Phytonutrition: How Daily, Regular Intake of a Plant-based Diet May Decrease Cancer Risk
"The 7 Wonders of Olive Oil uses a conversational style to explore the virtues of olive oil, in particular extra virgin olive oil. The authors' enthusiasm for the flavours and health benefits of this natural juice is evident in every page.
The book is divided into three parts: the first gives a brief history of the use of olive oil in the Mediterranean Diet and an overview of the current state of the industry; the second presents an anthology of research into the health benefits; part 3 deals with the practicality of purchasing and using extra virgin olive oil.
Part 2 is the spine of the book describing the 7 wonderful ways in which olive oil has an impact on metabolism and consequently on some of the most common ailments experienced by humans. Research supporting the health benefits is well articulated and case studies personalise each disease. As a male I do note that the case studies are almost exclusively female and coverage of male ailments such as prostate cancer would provide some gender balance and broaden interest.
Part 2 is strong, gives a useful summary of research and alone justifies adding this book to your olive oil library
Part one, while giving a broad view of the world olive oil industry, could give more insight by analysing the current status of olive oil compared to other vegetable oils. Realistic analysis would reveal that per capita consumption in almost all countries is declining. Perhaps less reliance on the view of the International Olive Council and more interviews with the commercial side of the industry would be more revealing. To enjoy the health benefits of olive oil, consumers must be able to access and afford it.
Part three describes how to taste and describe the flavours of extra virgin olive oil and gives hints on what to purchase. The use in the kitchen comprises mainly a series of recipes. Here, or in the chapter on health benefits, the interaction of olive oil with particular ingredients, such as tomatoes and fish, of the Mediterranean diet could be discussed in more detail.
The book ends with a quiz, a useful glossary and a comprehensive list of references
The authors have taken on a formidable task in covering the 7 (Health) Wonders of olive oil and providing enough objective backgrounding. Their style is engaging and their enthusiasm evident in achieving this aim. The book will be a welcome addition to any library or collection of books on olive oil."
--Simon Field, Extra Virgin Olive Oil Savantes