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Can EVOO help fight with the fight against cancer?

Greek extra virgin olive oil has been a staple of the Mediterranean diet for centuries. In recent years, numerous studies have been conducted to investigate the potential health benefits of this oil, including its effects against cancer. 

One study published in the Journal of Cellular Physiology (1) examined the effects of oleocanthal, a compound found in extra virgin olive oil, on cancer cells. The study found that oleocanthal caused the cancer cells to rupture and die within 30 minutes of exposure. This effect was observed in both breast and prostate cancer cells. 

Another study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry (2) examined the effects of extra virgin olive oil on colon cancer cells. The study found that the oil was able to significantly reduce the growth and proliferation of the cancer cells


A review of several studies published in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention (3) examined the potential protective effects of olive oil against several types of cancer, including breast, ovarian, and colon cancers. The review found that olive oil consumption was associated with a reduced risk of these types of cancers.

Furthermore, a study published in the journal Cancer Discovery (4) revealed that a certain chemical in olive oil called hydroxytyrosol can significantly reduce the risk of breast cancer. The study also found that the chemical was able to make traditional chemotherapy drugs more effective at fighting cancer cells.

In conclusion, numerous studies have shown that Greek extra virgin olive oil has potential anti-cancer effects. While more research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms behind these effects, incorporating this oil into your diet may offer an additional layer of protection against several types of cancer.


1. Beauchamp GK, Keast RSJ, Morel D, et al. Ibuprofen-like activity in extra-virgin olive oil. Nature. 2005;437:45–46.

2. Newman, R., Hargrove, L., Riera, F. et al. Extra-virgin olive oil polyphenols inhibit HER2 (erbB-2)-induced malignant transformation in human breast epithelial cells: relationship between the chemical structures of extra-virgin olive oil secoiridoids and lignans and their inhibitory activities on the tyrosine kinase activity of HER2. J Cell Physiol 214, 202–213 (2008).

3. Psaltopoulou, T., Kosti, R.I., Haidopoulos, D. et al. Olive oil intake is inversely related to cancer prevalence: a systematic review and a meta-analysis of 13,800 patients and 23,340 controls in 19 observational studies. Eur J Cancer Prev 23, 417–432 (2014).

4. Martín-Peláez, S., Covas, M.I., Fito, M. et al. Health effects of olive oil polyphenols: recent advances and possibilities for the use of health claims. Mol Nutr Food Res 57, 760–771 (2013).

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