Help pack a million meals for struggling seniors on Sept. 11. Volunteer today


AARP Staying Sharp: Keep Your Brain Healthy


The tablet with free 24/7 customer support. Learn More


Military and Veterans Discount


AARP’s Picture Your Retirement Sweepstakes

Enter the $50K Picture Your Retirement Sweepstakes. Ends 8/31/15. No purchase necessary. Enter for Official Rules.


AARP Games - Play Now!


Learn From the Experts

Sign up now for an upcoming webinar or find materials from a past session.


Planning for Long-Term Care for Dummies

Get expert advice on planning for your own or a relative’s future care needs.

Learning centers

Get smart strategies for managing health conditions.



Heart Disease


Most Popular


Health Discovery

Use Olive Oil to Guard Against Stroke

Pour on the olive oil, pass on the butter

En español | Using olive oil for cooking, in salad dressing and to add flavor to foods may help prevent a stroke, according to a new study from France.

Sign up for AARP's Health Newsletter.

Olive oil may help prevent strokes

Olive oil consumption may cut stroke risk. — Getty Images

Countless studies have already demonstrated the benefits of olive oil in protecting against high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and other conditions that contribute to heart disease, but this is the first one to look at the effect of olive oil on strokes.

"We often think about diet and heart disease. However, it's also important to link diet to other kinds of vascular disease, including stroke," says neurologist Ralph Sacco, M.D., president of the American Heart Association and chairman of neurology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. "This interesting paper adds to our information about the relationship of olive oil to stroke risk."

French researchers combed through the medical records of more than 7,600 men and women age 65 and older from three cities in France — all of whom were enrolled in a long-term health study.

Participants typically ate a Mediterranean-type diet, which is high in olive oil, fruits, vegetables and grains, and low in red meat and dairy products. None had a history of stroke. In addition to their age, weight and information on whether they smoked and how many alcoholic drinks they had each week, participants described the kinds of foods they ate, including the fats and oils they preferred. The researchers then fine-tuned olive oil use into categories of:

  • No use.
  • Moderate use (cooking or in salad dressing and to add flavor to food).
  • Intensive use (both in cooking and salad dressing and to add flavor to food).

Next: Use olive oil instead of butter to reduce your stroke risk. >>

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts


Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.


Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Walgreens 1 discount membership aarp

Members can earn 50 points per $1 spent on select health & wellness products at Walgreens.

member benefit aarp hear usa

Members save 15% on easy listening devices and more at the HearUSA Hearing Shop.

Eye Med 4 Membership Benefit AARP Discount

Members save up to 60% on eye exams and 30% on glasses at Target Optical.

Membership Benefits Discounts Email Genius

Brain boost? Get AARP email for access to memory exercises & more that help you focus.

Rewards for Good

Your Points Balance:

Learn More

Earn points for completing free online activities designed to enrich your life.

Find more ways to earn points

Redeem your points to save on merchandise, travel, and more.

Find more ways to redeem points