Olive oil is a favorite cooking staple of home cooks and professional chefs alike. Whether using it on its own or blending it with something else – vinegar, for example – there’s no doubt that the world has been using, loving, and singing the praises of olive oil for centuries. It is nutritious, tasty, and healthy, as it lowers blood pressure, thereby helping people avoid heart disease and diabetes.
Many centuries ago, people realized that combining olive oil and lemon offered plenty of nutritional benefits, and they were used together in traditional medicine as well as cooking. In the same way, that olive oil and vinegar have been proven to have plenty of health benefits, so too have olive oil and lemon. Modern science has shown that this combo packs plenty of punch, offering not just great taste but health benefits too.
In this post, we offer some of the best ways to use these two wonderful foods together and explain each one’s nutritional content. Using them together or separately ensures you’re getting all the health benefits you can from olive oil and lemon. Read on to learn about this dynamic duo!
Health Benefits of Olive Oil and Lemon
Both of these classic and popular cooking essentials pack a big wallop health-wise. Here we do a deep dive into just what those benefits are, whether you use them separately or together.
The Benefits of Olive Oil
Olive oil is a primary ingredient of the Mediterranean diet, one of the world’s most lauded ways of eating. In particular, extra virgin olive oil is loaded with nutrients. Researchers say that this golden liquid lowers cholesterol levels and reduces your risk of heart disease by lowering blood pressure. When your blood pressure goes down, so do the odds of you having a stroke or heart attack.
Furthermore, olive oil is packed with monounsaturated oleic acid, a type of good fatty acid. This acid is wonderful for you in lots of ways, and olive oil is brimming with it! It can even lower inflammation levels, meaning the swelling and soreness of arthritic joints may be reduced. And scientists are even now studying whether olive oil reduces your risk of cancer – early studies say yes. It has lots of antioxidants, too, the powerful molecules that fight damaging free radicals.
And last but not least, olive oil is good for your mental well-being too. One promising study shows that olive oil works hard to protect your memory by reducing bad proteins that build up in the brain and are partially responsible for Alzheimer’s. More work must be done, but all indications are that consuming olive oil regularly helps ward off dementia. What could be better than a delicious oil that helps protect your brain as you age!
The Benefits of Lemon
Lemon’s nutrition lies in its vitamins. According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, lemons are packed with vitamins C, B, and others, as well as magnesium, thiamine, flavonoids, and potassium. Lemons are also loaded with antioxidants, so they help fight free radicals that contribute to the development of cancer cells. All of these powerful nutrients combine to offer you many health benefits, just like olive oil does.
And there is more good news. Foods packed with vitamins and antioxidants may work to strengthen your immune system. This part of you works to battle colds and flu, so the stronger and tougher your immune system is, the better! One study found that vitamin C helps combat colds by reducing the time they spend in your body. For example, instead of being sick for eight days with a bad cold, if you’re regularly consuming vitamin C, you might be down for only four or five. That’s a big improvement, and a whole lot less time spent out of commission, right? And if you’re heavily into fitness and enjoy lots of daily cardio, vitamin C may help your endurance level. As we said, there is a lot to praise lemons for!
And one more thing: lemons help you process food. Your body works hard to break down and digest all the different foods you enjoy. A lemon’s nutritional profile includes carbs, fiber, and soluble sugar, so it promotes gut health by slowing your digestion. That, in turn, frees your digestive track somewhat, so it gradually stabilizes blood sugar levels.
On every front – from flavor to nutrition, lemons offer you a win-win of health benefits!
How to Use Olive Oil and Lemon
There is no question that combining olive oil and lemon is a nutritional diet that scores high on every level. Ingesting a little olive oil and lemon, blended together, aids your digestion. And just to recap, olive oil and lemon fight inflammation, reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke, and taste fabulous! Now, let’s begin looking at ways to use them together.
Olive Oil and Lemon Juice
Since both olive oil and lemons help rid you of bad free radicals, it’s fair to say they work hard to cleanse your body.
Drinking this blend each day may also help you lose weight. That’s because vitamin C helps build something called “carnitine.” Carnitine transports fat to your cells and is then converted into energy. Research shows that folks who ingest less vitamin C than those who ingest it daily burn less fat.
Another reason you should take olive oil and lemon blended together is that this mixture may help prevent kidney stones and gallstones from forming. If you’ve ever had either one, you know how painful they are. So have a little of this blend every day, and your stomach, gall bladder, and kidneys will thank you for it!
Dietary experts agree that drinking a mixture of olive oil and lemon early each morning, before you ingest anything else, is the best way to ensure you get all the health benefits. Just a teaspoon does it – quickly swallow and boom! You’re on your way to better health!
Olive Oil and Lemon Dressing
If you’re still buying and using pre-made salad dressing, now is the time to stop! Making a dressing of olive oil and lemon with a few herbs and spices is the healthiest way to dress your greens. You can also use this to marinate chicken and fish – it’s delicious. You can find a list of some of our favorite lemon and olive oil recipes here.
It’s vital that you prepare salads for yourself and your family that are fresh, flavorful, and rich in nutrients. Pre-made salad dressings are chock full of bad things, including loads of sodium, preservatives, and even sugar. These are tough for the body to process, and they undo all the good of fresh greens, lettuce, and any vegetables you put in your salads.
Here is a quick and easy-to-make recipe for olive oil and lemon salad dressing:
- three cloves of garlic, minced or very finely chopped.
- 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground pepper. (More if you love pepper).
- 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil.
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
- 1/2 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice.
Put all the ingredients together in a container, preferably a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake it up vigorously for about a minute. Voila! You’ve got an excellent dressing for tonight’s salad.
For a variation on this delicious dressing, add one tablespoon of Dijon mustard to the basic recipe above. You get a creamy, delicious dressing that’s perfect for salad, or on chicken before you pop it onto the barbecue.
Olive Oil and Lemon Mixture for Your Body
It isn’t just by ingesting the mixture of olive oil and lemon that you can improve your body. You can also strengthen your nails and hair, and make your complexion brighter and smoother with this mixture.
Put the mixture into a small bowl and soak your fingertips for about 10 minutes. (We suggest doing this just before bed). Following this routine regularly fixes ragged or damaged nails, strengthens the nail beds, and softens the cuticles.
Skin and hair also benefit from regular treatments of olive oil and lemon. They are both packed with vitamin E and antioxidants, as we’ve explained, both of which are great for your tresses and your complexion. The better quality oil you use, the more noticeable the benefits. For more on how to use this mixture on your hair and skin, check out our post:
And of course, another bonus of using lemon and olive oil is that they help control your weight. They may even accelerate weight loss if you’re on a diet. Try our suggestion of a teaspoon of olive oil and lemon every morning if you’re working hard to lose weight. You just might find it goes more quickly.
We have one caveat: if you have any kind of negative reaction when you first ingest olive oil and lemon, consult a physician. Allergies to these wholesome foods are rare but always err on the side of caution.
Olive oil and lemon are both praised right around the globe for their many healthful properties. Using premium extra virgin olive oil should be your “go-to” preference, but all olive oils are delicious and nutritious. If you need guidance on which olive oils pack the biggest nutritional punch, check out the following link: The Complete Guide to Understanding All Different Types of Olive Oil
The many benefits of olive oil and lemon have been demonstrated over countless centuries. Whether you consume them in salad dressing or marinade, use them to cook on the stove or barbecue, or start sipping on a little mixture of the first thing in the morning, you’re going to notice big improvements. Your digestion, your skin’s softness and clarity, your hair, and your nails all benefit greatly when you consume olive oil and lemon.
If you know of ways to use this mixture that we haven’t mentioned, please let us know in our comments section. We’re always thrilled to receive feedback from our readers!