A new report has scientifically proven the benefits of olive oil for improving heart health

The report builds on initial research headed by Dr. Bill Mullen at the University of Glasgow and funded in its final stages by Filippo Berio*. The study found that, uniquely amongst cooking oils sampled (including sunflower oil and rapeseed oil), ONLY olive oil had a positive impact on heart health. In addition, the study found that it doesn’t matter if it’s Extra Virgin or ‘refined’ olive oil, as long as people consume 20ml in its raw form each day – all olive oils produce a beneficial effect in coronary artery disease (CAD).

The distinctive methodology used in the study measured the levels of protein fragments in urine which, when combined into group, are indicators (biomarkers) of heart health – long before any symptoms are detected. By measuring these biomarkers there is now data to show that only extra virgin and “normal” olive oil have a positive impact on heart health. The latest study shows no other edible oils achieve this.

Dr Bill Mullen jointly supervised both the olive oil study and the follow-up study to test sunflower and rapeseed oils. He explained: “The initial olive oil study was carried out in Glasgow because the Glasgow population had such a low intake of olive oil that it was like painting on a blank canvas. At the time Glasgow was also the heart attack capital of the UK, if not Europe.

“After the initial study with olive oils, we tried to replicate it using sunflower and rapeseed oils.  We once again recruited volunteers in Glasgow, as we assumed that this would match as close as possible to the olive oil study. It was a surprise to us to find that neither oil provided any beneficial effect for heart health.”

* Thank you to the other funders of the research, namely Sovena for the olive oil study and the BBC for the rapeseed and sunflower oil.

You can read more about the report here.

So now you can feel even better about enjoying Filippo Berio olive oil on a regular basis!

To make it easy to incorporate 20ml of raw olive oil into your daily routine, here are some suggestions from Nutritional Therapist, Linda Vezzoli, lecturer at the College of Naturopathic Medicine. 

NOTE: 4 teaspoonfuls of olive oil = the required 20ml

Tips to incorporate 20ML into your daily dose...

Dr Bill Mullen is a senior Research Fellow for the School of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Health at the University of Glasgow. From 2014-2017 his work was ranked in the top 1% for citations in his field of research by Thompson Reuters, which earned him the title of a highly cited research. He returned to the University after working in a Pharmaceutical Drug Metabolism lab and also running his own company designing and manufacturing scientific instruments for metabolite analysis. Since returning to the University in 1998 he has published more than 180 manuscripts in peer reviewed journals. His first 12 years back at the University was in the Plant Products and Human Nutrition group, where his expertise in mass spectrometric analysis became world renowned.

Dr Mullen’s principle aim was to find causal links between diet and health. We all know that a diet rich in fruit and vegetables is good for us, but how can we provide hard evidence of this. It became apparent to him that the classical approaches to this question, using conventional markers of health, was not going to reveal an answer. The chance to collaborate with Professor Harald Mischak in applied systems biology, with the latest mass spectrometric systems, was too good an offer to turn down. By being able to determine biomarkers of specific diseases at such an early stage, that no lasting damage had incurred, he believes it may be possible to show how changes in diet could alter the biomarker scoring from unhealthy to healthy. Recent work has provided excellent evidence for the use of this clinical technology in health and nutrition research.

Linda Vezzoli, Nutritional Therapist

Linda Vezzoli is an Italian nutritional therapist based in London. She lectures at the College of Naturopathic Medicine (CNM) and specialises in working with women struggling with their hormones, fertility, fatigue and digestion. Linda uses the very best nutritional science combined with personal health coaching to offer the most comprehensive level of support for her clients’ health journeys.

As a Registered Nutritional Therapist, Linda is fully insured and a registered member of B.A.N.T (British Association of Applied Nutrition & Nutritional Therapy) and CNHC (Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council) as well as training as a Health Coach. She attends regular seminars, courses and workshops to keep up to date with the ever evolving scientific research in health and nutrition.