Olive oil increases longevity, says Danish report

Copenhagen: Four teaspoons of olive oil a day can help protect against cancer, says a new report by researchers at Copenhagen University Hospital.

In a study of 182 European men, levels of 8-oxodG, which reflects cell damage, was measured in urine. Men whose diet included 25 militres (0.9 fluid oz) of olive oil, had 13 per cent less of the substance.

The Danish team said it could explain why many cancer rates are higher in northern Europe than in the south, where olive oil is a major part of the diet.

Dr Henrik E Poulsen, of Rigshospitalet, Denmark, who led the study, said: “Every piece of evidence so far points to olive oil being a healthy food. By the way, it also tastes great.”

Life expectancy and levels of obesity and other diseases of ageing are lower in Mediterranean countries. The diet which is rich in olive oil, fruits and vegetables is credited with promoting good health.