Why You Should Cook With Filtered Extra Virgin Olive Oil

You might be wondering: what makes olive oil so healthy for the brain in the first place? According to Lugavere, “Extra virgin olive oil is, in my opinion, medicine for the brain. It’s also a staple of the Mediterranean diet,” which is commonly referred to as the best diet for brain health, thanks to its large amounts of antioxidants, phytosterols and vitamins. He uses it to cook all his meals (taking into account the lower smoke point), but you can also mix it into sauces, desserts, etc. The important thing is to make sure you’re getting the right kind, which Lugavere says is filtered extra virgin olive oil (EVOO).

You might think that unfiltered extra virgin olive oil is the healthier option because it is unfiltered. But actually, there’s a sneaky reason why Lugavere actually prefers filtered EVO. “Unfiltered extra virgin olive oil has [olive] remains in the oil, which significantly lowers its smoke point and also makes it more prone to spoilage. These leftover olives reduce shelf life,” says Lugavere.

Unfiltered olive oil also contains more water and sediment, which can speed up the shelf life of the bottle. Unfiltered olive oil has a higher polyphenol content, thanks to freshly ground olive particles, so technically East the most nutrient-dense option, but you’ll need to consume it fairly quickly before it goes rancid. This is similar to the fruit juice example we mentioned above: the shelf life of freshly squeezed juice is only two or three days. Also, unfiltered olive oil may not be the best option for high-heat cooking, as it breaks down easily.

Filtered EVOO, on the other hand, can be safely cooked up to a temperature of around 350 or 375 degrees Fahrenheit, says Lugavere. And as a rule of thumb: if the olive oil needs to stay moist throughout the process (like with an olive oil cake, for example), you can probably cook up to 400 degrees safely. Otherwise, keep the temperature lower for dry cooking.

The bottom line? Keep incorporating olive oil into all your brain-healthy meals, just make sure you’re cooking with filtered EVOO to keep the smoke point as high as possible. If you want to use olive oil to support brain health, daily supplements may also be a good option. The Power of Vitamin D3+ from mbg contains a trio of organic oils, including the must-have extra virgin olive oil from Lugavere, to help boost vitamin D so it can be better absorbed by the body. On that note, vitamin D specifically serves as another building block of a healthy brain.* In fact, researchers have found that vitamin D impacts proper brain function, thereby supporting healthy brain balance. mood and cognitive function.*