Green olives are native to the Mediterranean region of Europe and harvest occurs generally in the month of September. Olives are fruits that contain about 75 percent of oleic acid in oil form; this acid is a monounsaturated fat that helps to reduce blood cholesterol levels. Olives are not eatable straight from the tree--they require processing to reduce the bitterness and can be left on the tree to ripen into black olives. Olives contain both vitamins and minerals, but they also contain high sodium content; therefore, moderate consumption is advisable. Consult with your health care provider to discuss if olives could be beneficial for your diet.
Olives contain 4.44 milligrams of iron, which is 24.7 percent of the daily value, or DV, in a 1-cup serving. Iron helps to enhance the oxygen distribution in your body, aids your body in energy production and keeps your immune system healthy. Non-heme iron is the type of iron found in plant-based foods and dairy products, while heme iron is in animal-based foods.
One serving of olives contains 4.03 milligrams of vitamin E, or 20.1 percent of the DV. Vitamin E helps to protect your skin from ultraviolet light, aids in the communication of cells, prevents cells damage from free radicals and helps to protect against cancer and Alzheimer’s disease, according to the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements.
Olives include 0.34 milligrams of copper, which is 17 percent of the DV. Copper helps your body in the utilization of iron and reduces tissue damage from free radicals. It also helps to maintain the health of bones and connective tissues, preservation in the myelin sheath that protects your nerves, aids in the production of melanin and assists in keeping your thyroid gland functioning normally.
Olives have 4.3 grams of fiber or 17.2 percent of your DV. Dietary fibers help the digestive system with elimination, such as pushing the food through the body to prevent or reduce constipation. In addition, fiber helps to lower your risk of diabetes, heart disease and diverticulitis, according to the Harvard School of Public Health.
- green olives in glass image by Melking from Fotolia.com
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.