The Power of Olive Oil. Benefits, Myths, and French Fries

By Bill Bradley, R.D.
Updated September 14, 2021

Olive oil has been used as food and medicine in the Mediterranean Diet for thousands of years.  Today, we will be speaking with Dr. Artemis Morris, a naturopathic physician about the health benefits and myths of olive oil.

One of the myths of olive oil is that you cannot use it for frying or deep-frying, because of its low smoking point.  The truth is, you can safely fry with olive oil and the better quality the oil the better it is for frying.   The International Olive Oil Council puts the smoking point of olive oil at 410 degrees F. Most people agree that the best frying temperature is between 360 and 375 degrees F.  So, you have a fairly large window for frying without smoking.  It is helpful to have a cooking thermometer when you are frying so you know that you aren’t moving towards the smoking point.

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Dr. Morris also talks about the polyphenol content of olive oil, a powerful anti-inflammatory and major health component of the Mediterranean Diet.  Olive oil has been shown to have positive benefits for those suffering with diabetes.

We also discuss how to purchase a good quality olive oil. This is important because 75% of olive oil in the store has been shown to be fraudulent in one way or another.

Finally, we chat about one of my favorite subjects: French Fries!  Dr. Morris tells us how to make real, delicious fried French Fries on the stove using olive oil.  Below, you can also watch the video made by our intern George Zikos of his Aunt making french fries on the Mediterranean Island of Crete.

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