(Courtesy of De La Rosa Real Foods) So what are polyphenols? Polyphenols are a category of compounds naturally found in plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices, tea, dark chocolate and wine. They can act as antioxidants, meaning they can neutralize harmful free radicals that would otherwise damage your cells and increase your risk of conditions like cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Polyphenols are also thought to reduce inflammation, which is considered to be the root cause of many chronic illnesses.
Yehudith Girshberg commented: “In the fourth century, BC, Hippocrates said: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food,” as he wanted to pinpoint the meaning of choosing the right human diet. “Nowadays, food science has focused on this sentence by rethinking many prospects about foods and their relationship with human health. The concept of developing food to promote health and reduce the risk of disease to the people was first introduced in Japan in the 1980s. This consideration led to the birth of the term functional foods. This term is not quite specified yet, but generally functional foods are foods that are basic in the human diet and contain components with significant biological activities.”
The Functional Food Center (FFC) defines foods as “Natural or processed foods that contain known or unknown biologically active compounds; these foods, in defined, effective and non-toxic amounts, provide a clinically proven and documented health benefit for the prevention, management or treatment of chronic diseases.”
It becomes obvious that polyphenols are very important for human health, participating in all these biological processes, increasing life expectancy. Studies have shown anticancer properties of polyphenols [41, 42], while they exhibit astonishing, strong antioxidant activities. One of the most important discoveries about polyphenols was the neuroprotective role and particularly the effects against Alzheimer’s disease . A very important issue of polyphenols is their efficacy in heart diseases, like atherosclerosis. EVOO polyphenols, also, are effective in autoimmune inflammatory situations like rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus. (Information from “Olive Oil Phenols” by Christos Papanikolaou, Eleni Melliou and Prokolios Magiatis, April 2019.)
We asked Yehudith Girshberg how she finds the right oil to be called De La Rosa. She said, “That has been the challenge—to get a really high quality EVOO that is Fruttato for our conventional extra virgin olive oil as we know that the American Consumer prefers a milder oil. For De La Rosa organic olive oil, we select an oil with more burn as organic consumers have different expectations.”
“What is most important is that consumers should choose extra virgin olive oil over any of the other types of olive oil. It is the most health beneficial,” Girshberg stated.
Also, she said that “extra virgin olive oil should not be heated. Studies have found that heating olive oil reduces the levels of most phenolic compounds. The deterioration of olive oil is slowed by keeping it cool and protected from light. We offer many other oils, such as De La Rosa avocado oil or grape seed oil, that have a high heat profile and can be used when cooking or frying.”
What is most important to remember, she further stated, is that “food can be healing or hurting and we need to choose wisely.”
De La Rosa products can be found in your local kosher or gourmet markets as well as at www.Delarosa613.com.