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Olive oil; waste water

New research, in Italy, has shown that waste water from the production of olive oil may be used as a source of valuable bioactive antioxidants - widely believed to have a protective effect on human health.

Olives and olive oil, in particular extra virgin olive oil, contain a variety of bioactive compounds (photochemicals) - 'hydroxytyrosol (HT).

Capsules of the waste water extract, containing 50mg of HT, were prepared and given to volunteers for several days

The absorption of HT from the capsules was confirmed by measuring the excretion of HT in urine. Scientists, including Claudio Galli, at the Universita degli di Milano, observed that production of 'thromboxane B2 (an index of pro-blood clotting activity) was markedly decreased after taking the capsules, indicating that HT inhibits the activity of the platelet cycloxygenase system, an activity similar to aspirin.

In another part of the project, the waste water extract was added to a very low-fat yoghurt, and analyses showed that the HT was absorbed by humans. However, at the dose of HT used (20mg) there was almost no observed effect on serum thromboxane B2 after 3 days.

More research is needed, but yoghurts containing waste olive oil water seem likely in the future.

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