Kalamata Olives are a type of olive tree native to Greece and Turkey. They have been cultivated since ancient times, but were not widely used until the 19th century when they became popular in the United States due to their low cost. Today, kalama olives are grown throughout Europe and Asia. The name “kalamata” means “black” or “dark olive”. The name comes from the Greek word καλμία (kallimai), which refers to the dark color of the fruit.
The seeds of these olives contain high levels of vitamin C, potassium, manganese and other nutrients. These fruits are rich in antioxidants that may protect against cancer and heart disease. They are also known to reduce cholesterol levels and lower blood sugar levels.
Kalmata olives are commonly used in Mediterranean cuisine such as salads, soups and stews. They make a good addition to desserts like pies, cakes and ice cream.
Black Olives are another variety of olive trees native to Africa. Black olives have a darker color than the red or pink varieties. They are also considered less bitter than their lighter cousins.
Black olives are usually pickled in a mixture of water, salt and sugar. They are also preserved dry or in brine. These olives are commonly used in salads and pastas. They can be stuffed with cheese, garlic or herbs to enhance their flavor. Black olives contain high levels of nutrients such as copper, vitamin C, calcium and iron.
Recent studies suggest that black olives may be good for the heart. They have been shown to lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart attacks. Black olives also contain phenols and anthocyanins that may fight cancer.
Black olives are a very popular snack due to their nutty flavor and soft texture. They can be eaten by themselves as a healthy and delicious snack. They can also be added to various dishes like salads, sandwiches and pasta. Olives have also been pressed into oil, which is used for cooking.
Black olives are one of the most commonly consumed foods in the world. They are grown in many countries including the United States, Turkey, Morocco and Spain. California, New York and Texas are some of the biggest producers of black olives in the US.
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Kalamata Olives: Nutrition Facts and Benefits
Kalamata Olives: Nutrition Facts and Benefits 1.2Kshares There have been many myths surrounding olives for years. Many of us have heard our grandparents say that they are terrible for your health. On the contrary, olives are actually quite healthy especially the black ones. Black olives are a rich source of nutrients and provide numerous health benefits.
However, not all black olives are created equal. Kalamata olives are traditionally grown in Greece and have a stronger taste and texture than other varieties such as the common Pitted Olive. They also have a higher fat content which can increase your calorie intake. It is important to have moderation with these olives as with all types of food. Let’s take a closer look at the nutrition facts and benefits of olives and kalamata olives in particular. Continue reading to learn more!
Black Olives Nutrition Facts Serving Size: 100g (about 18 olives) Amount per Serving Calories 58 % Daily Value* Total Fat 4.2g 6% Saturated Fat 0.6g 3% Polyunsaturated Fat 0.9g Monounsaturated Fat 2.3g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 198mg 8% Potassium 163mg Total Carbohydrate 4.3g 1% Dietary Fiber 1.5g 6% Sugar 0.7g Protein 0.6g Vitamin A 0IU 0% Vitamin C 2.1mg 2% Calcium 3IU 0% Iron 0.2mg Vitamin E 0.3mg 0% Vitamin K 1.4mcg 1% Thiamin 0.04mg 3% Riboflavin 0.04mg 17% Niacin 0.1mg 2% Vitamin B6 0.05mg 26% Folate 2mcg 0% Vitamin B12 0g
*Disclaimer: Nutrition information is based on approximate values provided by natural foods and size descriptions from USDA. Information may vary due to natural variation in foods.
Black Olives Nutrition Benefits Black olives are a source of beneficial nutrients and provide several health benefits. Kalamatas in particular are an excellent source of vitamin E and dietary fiber. A 1-ounce serving of kalamata olives provides 6% of the daily value of vitamin E and 3 grams of fiber. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that protects your cells from free radical damage. It also helps prevent cardiovascular disease and cancer (1, 2, 3).
Dietary fiber helps keep your digestive system healthy and lowers your risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer (4, 5, 6). Black olives are also a good source of copper, manganese, phosphorus, vitamin B6 and potassium. One ounce (28 grams) of kalamata olives provides 9% of the daily value of copper and a quarter of the DV for manganese. Copper is an essential mineral that helps fight free radicals and assists in immune function. It also helps produce cells and keep your blood vessels healthy (7, 8). The DV for manganese is 2mg and olives provide 9% of this DV. This mineral is important for a healthy nervous system and plays a role in metabolism (9, 10). The same serving size (28 grams) of kalamata olives also provides 2% of the DV for vitamin B6 and 13% of the DV for phosphorus. Vitamin B6 is important for brain health and metabolism. Olives also provide 2% of the DV for potassium. This mineral is important to maintain electrolyte balance and blood pressure (11, 12, 13).
Other Health Benefits of Olives & Kalamatas There are several other health benefits associated with olives and kalamata olives in particular. These little fruits don’t look like much but they can provide numerous other benefits. Prevent Infection – Olive oil has antimicrobial and antioxidant activity that helps prevent infection (14).
Reduce Blood Clots – The omega-3 fatty acids found in kalamata olives help reduce blood clots, which may lower the risk of heart disease (15).
Improve Cholesterol Levels – Eating kalamatas or other varieties of olives lowers your LDL cholesterol levels and raises your HDL cholesterol levels (16, 17).
Treating Osteoporosis – The high level of vitamin K in olives helps prevent osteoporosis (18).
Skin Benefits – The antioxidants in olives, in particular oleuropein, provide protection from the sun and help protect skin from aging (19, 20). Olives are a fruit and contain sugars (carbohydrates). In general, the health benefits of fruits outweigh the potential detriment of a few extra carbs.
In addition to eating olives as a healthy snack, you can also use them as a salad dressing or meal topping. The Mediterranean diet is perhaps the healthiest in the world due in large part to the consumption of olives and other healthy foods.
Buying and Storing Olives Olives are available in most grocery stores. In the US, kalamata olives are more common, but you can also find green olives and other varieties. Pick olives that are firm and heavy for their size. Olives can be stored in your pantry for up to a year. If you like them very ripe, you can also purchase olives in a jar that has been brine-soaked and partially pickled.
These olives will be softer and more ripe and should be used within a few weeks.
Eat these as a healthy snack or use as a salad dressing or meal topping.
Health Benefits of Olive Oil Olive oil is beneficial for your overall health and provides numerous other benefits. Heart Disease – Olive oil can help lower cholesterol and reduces the risk of heart disease (21, 22).
Alzheimer’s Disease – The antioxidants in olive oil help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease (23).
Diabetes – Olive oil can help improve blood sugar levels and lower the risk of diabetes (24, 25).
Cancer – The antioxidants in olive oil can prevents prostate cancer (26), colon cancer (27), and skin cancer (28).
There are a couple of other benefits of olive oil as well. Eating foods that contain olive oil can help improve lung function (29). It can also improve bowel movement regularity (19).
How to Cook With Olive Oil Olive oil can be used in place of other oils for cooking. It’s more expensive, but it has a better taste and provides numerous health benefits. In order to get the most health benefits from olive oil, it’s best to cook with it. Heating olive oil will not decrease its health benefits but may decrease its antioxidant content (30). Use olive oil just as you would use other oils when cooking or baking.
It can be used for sautéing, frying, and even baking. Use it just as you would any other oil or fat.
You can also use olive oil in place of butter on your bread. Just brush it on the bread like you would with butter. If you’re looking to save a few more calories you can also add a few drops of lemon juice to the top of the oil then drizzle it on the bread before topping with herbs and spices.
Natural Sweetener – You can also use it to sweeten your foods. It’s not as sweet as sugar, but you can drizzle a little bit of olive oil into your morning oats or yogurt then top with fruit to give it a little flavor boost.
How to Take Olive Oil Olive oil is so healthy that some people even take it as a supplement. Just one or two teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil each day can provide numerous health benefits. Taking an excessive amount of olive oil can have the opposite effect, so it’s best to stick with the recommended dosages.
Olive oil supplements should be taken with meals. For heart disease and high cholesterol, take up to 4 grams of olive oil per day. For stroke prevention, take up to 3 grams per day. For preventing cancer, take up to 2 grams per day.
Pantry Staples Besides foods that should be part of everyone’s daily diet, there are some other foods that you should always have in your house or apartment. These foods can be used to create full meals in themselves and can also be eaten as snacks or to curb hunger between meals.
Protein Bar: When you’re on the go, having a high-protein bar makes it easy to stay on track with your diet. Look for bars that are high in protein and low in sugar. Some bars also contain ingredients that are beneficial to your health, like fiber or omega-3 fatty acids.
Thin Crust Pizza: Some people can’t go a day without pizza. Luckily these days you can find some healthier options when ordering out. Most pizza places have a “light” pizza that doesn’t have too much cheese or other fatty ingredients on it. Try getting a thin crust pizza with lots of veggies on it instead of meat.
Spaghetti Squash: Looking for a low-carbohydrate substitute for spaghetti?
Look no further than spaghetti squash. This is a tasty veggie that, when baked, has a texture similar to pasta. Simply slice the squash in half, remove the seeds, and bake in the oven at 400 degrees for about an hour. For an even better flavor, add a little bit of butter, salt, and black pepper before serving.
Spinach Lasagna: Most lasagna recipes are pretty unhealthy but this one is pretty good. It’s still important to avoid too much fat and cheese, so use less of both and make sure to top it with plenty of vegetables. This recipe should make six 6-inch square pieces of lasagna.
16 Ounces Ground turkey
1 Can (28 Ounces) Whole Tomatoes
1/4 Cup Water
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1/2 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, Optional
12 Ounces Fat-Free Mozzarella, Divided into 6 Pieces, Optional
1 Package (10 Ounces) Frozen Chopped Spinach, Thawed And Drained Well
The night before cooking the lasagna, place a large saucepan over medium-high heat and add 2 1/2 cups of water. Bring to a boil and add the lasagna noodles, making sure they are completely covered by the water. Boil for about 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. The pasta should be slightly firm when cooked and not soft. Drain well and rinse with cold water until it is cooled.
Lay the noodles out on paper towels and cover with more paper towels. This will help them dry and keep their shape.
Turn the oven to broil. Spread 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish. Arrange 3 lasagna noodles over the sauce. Top with 1 cup of the tomato sauce, half of the spinach, 1/2 cup of the mozzarella, and 1/4 cup of water. Repeat layers once.
Top with remaining 3 lasagna noodles, 1 cup of the tomato sauce, and 1 cup of the mozzarella.
Place baking dish on a shallow baking pan to catch any spills. Broil for 5 minutes or until the cheese is golden brown. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
Spinach: Spinach is an excellent source of magnesium, and just one serving provides over 300% of your recommended daily amount. You’ll also get a nice serving of Vitamin A and K, as well as a good source of potassium and fiber.
Tomato: Tomatoes are nutritional powerhouses. One cup of chopped raw tomatoes has almost as much potassium as a banana, along with several other essential vitamins and minerals. They are also a good source of lycopene, which is a type of antioxidant thought to protect your heart and prostate.
Tomato Sauce: Canned or from a jar, tomato sauce is usually heavily processed and therefore isn’t the healthiest choice. However, it’s much better than most fast food sauces that are loaded with sugar. Use sparingly if you want to get the most nutritional value out of this meal.
Indian Style Lentils and Vegetables: This recipe is vegetarian and gluten-free. It is also very high in protein and fiber. This is a good, hearty meal on a budget that will keep you full for several hours. This recipe makes 8 servings.
1 Red Bell Pepper, Seeded And Diced
2 Teaspoons Ground Cumin
2 Bay Leaves
1 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, Optional
10 Ounces Red Lentils
1/4 Cup Brown Lentils
1 Large Sweet Potato, Peeled And Diced
2 14 1/2-Ounce Cans Garbanzo Beans, Drained And Rinsed
1 Large Bunch Fresh Spinach, Chopped
Juice Of 1/2 Lemon
1/4 Cup Slivered Almonds, Toasted And Roughly Chopped
1/4 Cup Fat-Free Plain Greek Yogurt
Spoon the tomatoes into a sieve over a bowl and push them through into the bowl to make a thick sauce. Discard the seeds and skins in the sieve.
In a large, heavy-based heat-proof casserole dish, add the oil and place it over medium-high heat.
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