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Avocado Oil vs. Olive Oil: Which is Better for You?

Avocado Oil vs. Olive Oil: Which is Better for You?

Many of us love to cook, but it can be difficult to find delicious oil alternatives when you’re following a diet. How can you create delicious flavors while cooking with unrefined oils? The answer to this question is simpler than you might think. Avocado and olive oil both have scientifically proven health benefits that can elevate your meals and snacks. Here’s what you need to know about avocado and olive oil and how they compare to one another. 

What is Avocado Oil?

Avocado oil is created from avocado fruit. Its oil is pressed for cooking purposes, containing a high nutritional value. Avocado oil can also be ingested raw and used as a skin moisturizer. This makes avocado oil a very practical and versatile ingredient. 

Much like extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil can be unrefined. Unrefined avocado oil retains the color of its original fruit, resulting in a stronger green color. Applied to the skin, avocado oil has a yellowish, pale color. It’s characterized by a high smoke point and a mild taste that makes it fantastic for cooking. 

Nutrition Information of Avocado Oil

Avocado oil is primarily known for being rich in unsaturated fats. Approximately one tablespoon of avocado oil includes:

  • 124 calories
  • 0 grams of protein
  • 14 grams of fat
  • 0 grams of carbohydrates
  • 0 grams of sugar

Health Benefits of Avocado Oil

Excellent Source of Unsaturated Fats

Much like the fruit itself, avocado oil is extremely rich in oleic acid, lutein, and Vitamin E. In other words, it’s filled to the brim with unsaturated fats. Lutein is a carotenoid that gives avocados their distinctive, bright green color. Oleic acid is a monounsaturated fat that contributes to positive heart health. More specifically, avocado oil consists of 70% oleic acid. Finally, Vitamin E helps your body absorb other fat-soluble vitamins that support overall health and well-being. 

Reduced Cholesterol

Since it consists of unsaturated fats, avocado oil is fantastic for heart health. One study found that participants had healthier lab results after eating meals containing avocado oil compared to ones with butter. Avocado oil has been particularly linked to decreasing LDL cholesterol and increasing HDL cholesterol. LDL is bad cholesterol commonly correlated to strokes and heart diseases. In other words, avocado oil could potentially reduce bad cholesterol levels. 

Improved Heart, Eye, and Skin Health

Along with unsaturated fats, avocado oil contains lutein and Vitamin E. Lutein is a carotenoid and an antioxidant that contributes to eye and skin health. This is because lutein is already naturally found in your eyes, but your body can’t develop it on its own. Thus, having a lutein-rich diet prevents your chances of developing age-related eye problems. The presence of Vitamin E helps your body absorb other important nutrients that promote better health. 

Compare nutrition, health benefits, and cooking uses of avocado and olive oils

What is Olive Oil? 

Typically associated with the Mediterranean diet, olive oil is a cooking ingredient that’s rich in antioxidants and monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs). As its name implies, it’s pressed from olives and has a long history dating back 6,000 years. Olive oil has been used in religious ceremonies and medicine along with cooking. It can come refined and unrefined with other forms like extra virgin olive oil. It’s known for having a peppery taste and its golden yellow appearance. 

Nutrition Information of Olive Oil

Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs). A single teaspoon can contain:

 

  • 120 calories
  • 0 grams of protein
  • 14 grams of fat
  • 2 grams of saturated fat
  • 10 grams of Monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs)
  • 1.5 grams of Polyunsaturated fat (PUFA)
  • 0 grams of carbohydrates
  • 0 grams of fiber
  • 0 grams of sugar

Health Benefits of Olive Oil

Increased Heart Health

Due to its high number of MUFAs, people who consume olive oil may have a lower risk of developing heart diseases. This is particularly true when using extra virgin olive oil due to its high number of antioxidants. One study included 7,200 women around the age of 55 who had a high risk of heart disease. Their results found that participants who regularly used olive oil in their cooking had a higher life expectancy and a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. 

Obesity Prevention

It should be emphasized that olive oil should only be one part of a healthy diet, a key part of obesity prevention. However, when used in moderation, olive oil may prevent unhealthy weight gain. This is because research studying the Mediterranean diet has revealed potential benefits in its ability to prevent metabolic syndrome, a significant contributor to obesity. Olive oil consumption may also contribute to lower blood pressure and healthy blood sugar levels.

Reduced Inflammation

Olive oil is rich in antioxidants, commonly linked to reduced inflammation. Decreased inflammation can lead to a variety of overall health benefits. Some of these include cancer prevention, reduced risk of heart disease, and liver health. A 2019 review even found that olive oil ingestion could promote gut health, a potential treatment option for people living with intestinal conditions like IBD. 

Comparing Avocado Oil to Olive Oil

Avocado oil and olive oil are very similar when it comes to their health benefits and uses. Both of these oils contribute to better heart health and lower levels of inflammation. Even so, this might leave you wondering which of the two you should ingest more. The answer to this is far from simple because they have extremely similar health benefits. Thus, deciding which oil to use for your diet will depend on dietary needs, the quality of the product, and taste preferences.

Conclusion

Avocado oil and olive oil are two types of cooking ingredients that are used for a wide range of everyday necessities. Both oils have been used in medicine, cosmetics, and salad dressings. For people looking for healthier oil alternatives, both offer incredible benefits. Avocado and olive oil promote heart health, skin and eye well-being, and nutrient absorption. Deciding which oil to add to your cooking habits is mostly up to personal preference. 

 

At Jackson's, we only use unrefined oils such as avocado oil to make our delicious sweet potato chips. 

 

If you found this information interesting, check out our blog to learn more about other foods and nutritional facts. Please visit our online store to try our amazing sweet potato chips!

 Stephen Stancak