Gastronomic cultural EVOOlution of the virgin olive oil consumption model at the restaurant: Un update

Post-covid customer will enter the restaurant with a new vision of the concept of hygiene, which must take on a reciprocal value of right / duty between customer and restaurateur. This is the right time to change the marketing of extra virgin olive oil at the restaurant, because extra virgin olive oil is an element that embodies the different aspects of the expected and perceptible quality of a food: taste, sensory, knowledge, sacredness, syncretism, health, history, naturalness and authenticity.

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Combined effect of Mediterranean diet and weight loss on clinical status in patients with inherited heart muscle disease (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy)

This post reposts the results of a study aimed to evaluate the impact of weight loss (WL) using a Mediterranean diet and mild-to-moderate-intensity aerobic exercise program, on clinical status of obese, symptomatic patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). The authors found that Mediterranean diet and aerobic exercise is associated with clinical-hemodynamic improvement in obese symptomatic HCM patients.

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Olive oil production and its impact on natural aquatic resources

Olive oil extraction processes generate significant quantities of wastes, olive mill solid waste, and olive mill wastewater, which are rich in precious compounds but toxic to the environment. In particular, olive mill wastewater is highly toxic. It is often discarded in water bodies without pre-treatment, causing severe problems for the aquatic environments. The search for new techniques to treat, transform and enhance them is a necessity, and thermal techniques such as flash pyrolysis and hydro-carbonization have proven their effectiveness. These techniques make it possible to transform these highly toxic effluents into a strategic compound with high added value, which constitutes a real additional source of benefits for farmers and extraction units, and ultimately a clean, green and sustainable olive oil production industry.

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Effects of Extra Virgin Olive Oil Polyphenols on Beta-Cell Function and Survival

Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) is a major component of the Mediterranean diet and is appreciated worldwide because of its nutritional benefits in metabolic diseases, including type 2 diabetes (T2D). EVOO contains significant amounts of secondary metabolites, such as phenolic compounds (PCs), that may positively influence the metabolic status. This post reports a study where was investigated for the first time the effects of several PCs on beta-cell function and survival. The results show that hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol, and apigenin foster beta-cells’ health, suggesting that EVOO or supplements enriched with these compounds may improve insulin secretion and promote glycemic control in T2D patients.

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Potential Uses of Olive Oil Secoiridoids for the Prevention and Treatment of Cancer

The Mediterranean diet (MD) is a combination of foods mainly rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients that have been shown to have many health-enhancing effects. Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO) is an important component of the MD. The importance of EVOO can be attributed to phenolic compounds, represented by phenolic alcohols, hydroxytyrosol, and tyrosol, and to secoiridoids, which include oleocanthal, oleacein, oleuropein, and ligstroside. This post summarizes the most recent findings regarding the pharmacological properties, molecular targets, and action mechanisms of secoiridoids, focusing attention on their preventive and anti-cancer activities. The prospects for their possible use in human cancer prevention and treatment is also discussed.

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The smell of the Mediterranean

Olive oil is an appreciated food product with high nutritional value, besides being an essential component in many culture diets. In this post the author presents how an application of a simple and non-invasive paper-based optoelectronic nose could be used to evaluate the odor of olive oils. By developing suitable mobile apps, it can be possible in the future to evaluate food product quality in a portable, low-cost, and in-situ way.

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Secoiridoids: an intriguing class of bioactive compounds in olive oil

In the last two decades, phenolic compounds occurring in olive oils known as secoiridoids have attracted a great interest for their bioactivity. The aim of this study was to assess the secoiridoid contents as a function of olive cultivars, place of cultivation (i.e., different Italian regions) and olive oil processing, in particular two- vs. three-phase horizontal centrifugation. As expected, higher secoiridoid contents were generally found in olive oils produced by two-phase horizontal centrifugation. Moreover, some region/cultivar-related trends were evidenced, as oleuropein and ligstroside aglycones prevailed in olive oils produced in Apulia (Southern Italy), whereas the contents of oleacin and oleocanthal were relatively higher in EVOO produced in Central Italy (Tuscany, Lazio and Umbria). A lower content of all the four secoiridoids was generally found in EVOO produced in Sicily (Southern Italy) due to the intrinsic low abundance of these bioactive compounds in cultivars typical of that region

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Polyphenols & the Mediterranean Diet: Blueberries as part of a Healthy Diet

Consuming polyphenol-rich fruits and vegetables, including blueberries, is associated with beneficial health outcomes. Interest in enhancing polyphenol intakes via dietary supplements has grown, though differences in fruit versus supplement matrix on gut microbiota and ultimate phenolic metabolism to bioactive metabolites are unknown. This post summarizes the results of an in vivo study where it was found that gut microbial populations showed increased diversity at moderate doses but decreased diversity at high doses. Urinary phenolic metabolites were primarily observed as microbially derived metabolites and underwent extensive host xenobiotic phase II metabolism. Thus, blueberry polyphenols in fruit and supplements induce differences in gut microbial communities and phenolic metabolism, which may alter intended health effect.

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The Mediterranean Diet in Osteoporosis Prevention: An Insight in a Peri- and Post-Menopausal Population

Osteoporosis represent a widespread public health problem. The management and prevention of osteoporosis and related low energy fractures start with a correct lifestyle and proper nutrition. Several different nutrients are essential for bone and mineral metabolism, especially calcium. Nevertheless, a well-balanced nutrition, such as Mediterranean diet (MD), proved to be beneficial for several chronic diseases and also fragility fractures resulted lower in the Mediterranean area. A prospective observational study in a population of two hundred peri- and post-menopausal women (aged 30–80 years) was developed at Careggi hospital, Florence. Both MD adherence and dietary calcium intake were evaluated in occasion of a “first visit” and a “follow-up” visit, through validated questionnaires. The results in this population of peri- and post-menopausal women, show that a higher daily calcium intake is recorded in higher levels of MD adherence. In addition, a short duration (no more than 20 min) nutritional interview, during which advice was provided in the context of a good clinical practice routine, was sufficient to obtain promising results in terms of lifestyle improvement and prevention of osteoporosis.

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