Olive oilis already known to help keep ''bad'' cholesterol levels down, which is good for your heart. But now a study in Philadelphia has shown that a compound in extra-virgin olive oil also mimics the effect of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) - such as aspirin and ibuprofen - but without the side effects or irritating the stomach.Does this mean a shot of olive oil will cure your headache? ''To get the equivalent dose to two ibuprofen tablets, you'd have to drink 500ml of olive oil,'' says co-director Dr Paul Breslin, ''which Ido not recommend.''
But inflammation is now thought to play a role in vascular diseases and some cancers and dementias, which may be a reason why a diet rich in olive oil seems to protect against them.
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