Do you ever wonder if the food you are having is a fruit or vegetable? For instance, take tomatoes as an example. This juicy food which is used to make several savory meals is a fruit. People often mistake it as a vegetable due to its flavor and the dishes they are used in.
So if we take a look at other vibrant colored foods such as olive which are used in various savory dishes, we can not help but wonder if olive fruit or vegetable. It is normal to have this misconception or to be easily confused by it. So, is an olive a fruit or vegetable? There has got to be more than just one fruit disguising in plain sight, right? The following discussion will help to clear out any queries.
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The Main Difference Between Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables can be differentiated based on two-point of view. From a culinary point of view, fruits and vegetables are distinguished based on their taste. Vegetables are generally savory in taste. They are usually used in side dishes and the main course. Whereas, fruits are sweeter to taste. They give off a tart flavor. Desserts, juices, and sweets are made from these fruits.
According to botany, the vegetable is a food substance that is derived from all parts of the plant other than the ones that are produced from seeds. Vegetables are developed from other parts of a plant such as stems, leaves, and roots. On the other hand, fruits are food substances that consist of seeds. Fruits grow from the ovary of flowering plants.
Based on these criteria understand that olive is a fruit. From a botanical standpoint, it is seen that olive grows from the flowering part of a plant and it also contains seeds. So it can be categorized as a fruit. Then again, from a culinary point of view, olive is used in savory dishes such as toppings of pizza, salads, and rice bowls. Its main function is to add flavors to the food item. So, it can be said that according to both the point of views olive is a fruit.
Origin of Olive
Olive is a fruit. If one pops an unpitted olive in their mouth they will taste and feel stone-like substances that are the seeds of olive. The stones that are present inside the olive are considered to be the seeds of these Olea Europaea trees. According to botany, we know that any food containing seeds falls under the category of being a fruit. Olives are stone fruits to be exact.
These types are also known as drupes. They usually produce sweeteners and add flavors to the meal. These types of fruits also include fruits like dates, apricots, mangoes, cherries, plums, peaches, and nectarines. Even though these foods are sweet they are considered to be fruits because botany does not depend on taste when it comes to classifying fruits and vegetables.
Usually, olives are used to add more flavors to food. For example, it is used with martinis, it is added as toppings on pizzas. Olives just make everything taste better. The main reason why people mistake olives to be vegetables is because of their color and savory taste. Even though olives may taste like any other vegetables, it is not a vegetable.
Why Are Fruits and Vegetables Frequently Mixed Up?
In general, everyone has a pretty decent sense of which items are called fruits and which are considered veggies. Many fruits, on the other hand, are classified as vegetables depending on the section of the plant they came from and how they taste. Fruits are typically thought to have a sweet flavor. They’re sometimes served as desserts after meals.
Fruit tart and fruit salad are examples of dishes created with fruits or fruit mixtures. Vegetables, on the other hand, are usually savory in flavor. Curries, salads, and a variety of spicy foods are all made using them. When you bite into an olive, you will notice that it is not sweet.
They have a more savory flavor. However, they are utilized in spicy recipes or curries. They are used to add flavors to simple drinks or dishes such as martinis, pizza, salads, and rice bowls. As a result, it’s difficult to tell if olive is a fruit or a vegetable.
Fruits develop from a plant’s flowering portion. As a result, they contain seeds. It is one of the most important characteristics that distinguish fruits and vegetables. Olives have seeds in them. They are the stony structures that one feels when they bite into an olive. Olive is a vegetable, according to its development.
Is an Olive a Fruit? The Reasons Behind
- Fruits are formed from plants and must include seeds, according to botany. Take, for example, the tomato. Because it is juicy and used in curry, many people consider tomato to be a vegetable. It’s also utilized in a variety of other dishes. Tomatoes, on the other hand, are technically fruit because they contain seeds. When we compare olive to this criteria, we can see that it is a fruit because of the presence of seeds.
- Fruits have a sweet flavor, according to culinary words. Vegetables are non-sweet parts of the plant. Olive is the plant’s ovary and does have a sweet flavor. It’s used in cooking and for flavoring a variety of savory meals. Olive is also a fruit, as evidenced by this.
- Vegetables are any section of a plant other than the seed-bearing ovary that is developed into a vegetable. Vegetables, in other words, are a plant’s leaves, roots, and stems. Olive, as we all know, is grown from the flowering part of the plant. As a result, they are fruits rather than vegetables.
- The color of an olive is one of the key reasons why people are confused about whether it is a fruit or a vegetable. Fruits are noted for their beautiful and diverse colors. Vegetables are usually green in color because they are the plant’s stems, leaves, and roots. Olives are a bright green color, which leads to confusion with vegetables.
How to Recognize a Good Olive?
Olives are readily available since they grow all year. They’re easy to get by in any supermarket. Even though olives are readily available, how can you choose a healthy and flavorful olive for your daily dietary supplement? The following are the features of a healthy and great olive:
- Fruity: Olive is green in color and is sweet. It should have a fruitiness. The olive should be fresh when tasted. It should not feel heavy and greasy.
- Bitter: If the olive tastes bitter then it is good. Bitterness is a criterion of fresh olive. Olives are bitter to taste. One can understand how ripe olive is by its degree of bitterness. So if olive is bitter then it is a positive thing. However, one can understand if the olive is ripe or not by tasting it. One can sense the fruity and bitter taste and balance according to their tolerance.
- Pungent: When a bite of olive is taken then the juice secreted from it gives a slightly peppery taste at the back of your throat. This may cause one to cough as a reflex. Many people may take this as a sign of bad olives. But actually, this is good. It is a sign of fresh olive. It shows the presence of some significant antioxidants. The peppery sensation goes away quickly. It does not stay present for a long time. If it lingers for a long time then one should look into it.
There are a few bad characteristics that will help you stay away from bad and rotten olives. This includes the following:
- Fusty: This is a very common defect seen in olives. This occurs if too many olives are kept in a closed space for too long which results in advanced fermentation. A fusty olive will smell or taste like swampy vegetation or sweaty socks and this will help you to determine the bad olives.
- Musty: When olives are stored for several days in a humid environment then it gives a moldy flavor. This occurs due to the development of yeast or fungus.
- Metallic taste: A bad or rotten olive will give a metallic taste. This may result if olives are stored for a long period in metallic containers.
- Winey- vinegary: Olives should not smell or taste like wine. If it does smell or taste like alcohol then it is due to fermentation and fermented olives should not be ingested.
- Rancid: Rancid is a taste similar to old nuts or stale crackers. This indicates that olive has gone bad.
Benefits of Olive
Olives have high nutritional values. They are part of a fruit group known as drupes or stone fruits. Mangoes, peaches, cherries, pistachios, and cherries also belong to this fruit group. Olives contain a huge amount of vitamins and minerals.
These vitamins and minerals are required an inadequate amount for the proper functioning of the body. The beneficial effects of olive are described below:
- Vitamin E: Vitamin E is an antioxidant. Usually, foods derived from a high-fat-containing plant have this strong antigen. Olive has high fat and oil content. Olive oil is derived from olive which is used regularly in our normal life for various purposes. So olive helps to provide the body with sufficient vitamin-e to function properly.
- Iron: All kinds of olives contain irons but black olives are a good source of iron. Iron is one of the main structural content of hemoglobin which is present in our blood. This iron helps to transport oxygen throughout our bodies. Oxygen binds with the hemoglobin of the red blood cells in the lungs and then is carried to the cells of all parts of our body.
- Copper: Coppers work with iron in forming the red blood cells of our body. Copper helps in the absorption of iron in our body and thus ensures that iron can play its role in our normal body function. The blood vessels, bones, nerves, and immune system are kept healthy by copper.
- Calcium: Calcium is one of the most essential minerals of our body. It helps in the growth and development of our bones and helps to keep our bones strong. This also prevents the decaying of our bones and various other bone-related diseases. Calcium is essential for the normal and healthy functioning of bones, nerves, and muscles.
- Sodium: Olives have high sodium content. Sodium is required to maintain the electrolyte balance of our body. The sodium-potassium channels are maintained with the presence of sodium. So lack of this mineral will cause electrolyte imbalance in our body.
- Oleuropein: This antioxidant is found in abundance in fresh and unripe olives. This provides all the health benefits of an antioxidant.
- Tyrosol: This is also an antioxidant. This is necessary to prevent any type of heart disease.
- Oleanolic acid: This antioxidant regulates blood fats and thus prevents damage to the liver. This also reduces inflammation.
- Quercetin: This is a food nutrient that helps to lower increased blood pressure and improve the health and condition of the heart.
It is quite common for confusion to arise when someone is asked if olive fruit or vegetable is. Many people tend to have the wrong idea because of the unique properties of olives that set them apart from all other fruits. As a result of this extensive discussion, we can conclude that olives are fruits.
Olives contain a variety of nutrients that help our health. We should try to include olives in your daily diet. This helps your body get the immunity it needs and guides a healthy lifestyle.
Can olive reduce the chance of cancer?
Olives contain a huge amount of antioxidants. The antioxidants present in olive play a vital role in reducing inflammations. That is, it is very effective in reducing the growth of microorganisms. Studies show that the ingestion of the pulpy residue of olive increases the blood level of glutathione which is one of the strongest antioxidants in our body. Thus, it can reduce the unwanted growth of cells that will prevent the production of ulcers or tumors. So, it will reduce the chance of cancer.
How can olives be processed and stored?
Olives can be processed and stored in various ways. These are mentioned below:
- They can be pickled, for example, Spanish green olives.
- They can be consumed raw for example, green-black olives.
- They can be ripened by oxidation and then pickled.
Is olive good for the heart?
Yes, olive is very good for our heart. We know, high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol are both risk factors for heart disease. The main fatty acid of olive is oleic acid. Oleic acid is associated with the improvement of our heart health. They help to reduce the raised blood pressure and maintain the cholesterol level within the normal range. They also prevent bad cholesterol from oxidation.