According to some people, olives make you fat – but is there any truth in this? How many calories do olives provide?
In fact, olives are among the quintessential foods of the Mediterranean diet and they are right at the base of the food pyramid: low in calories, but of great nutritional value. Here’s why.
Both green and black olives provide about 150 calories per 100-gram serving, depending on the caliber, dressing and the size of the pulp and the pit. This is a very low caloric intake compared to other types of snacks: for instance, 100 grams of potato crisps or nuts give 500 calories, while a 100-gram serving of crackers or pretzels provides 400 calories.
Nutritious calories in olives
Not only are olives a low-calorie food, they’re also rich in nutrients: olives contain healthy calories from natural sources and provide the necessary macro- and micronutrients for a wholesome, balanced diet.
While the calories in olives come mainly from their proteins and fats, it’s the oleic acid which is mainly responsible for their healthy properties, as it helps to prevent cardiovascular diseases.
Oleic acid helps to reduce bad cholesterol (LDL) by increasing the percentage of good cholesterol (HDL), as well as lowering blood pressure and helping to increase white blood cells, thus boosting the body’s defence mechanisms.
What’s more, olives are rich in antioxidants, minerals, vitamins A and E, iron and fibre, which aids digestion.
7 olives a day
With all these healthy properties and a low caloric intake, doctors recommend eating around 25 grams per day – in other words, about 7 olives, as part of a balanced diet. That’s easy! Choose the olives you like best – green, black or stuffed – and combine them in whatever way you wish.
Aceitunas Torrent, Olive masters since 1898