Background and Objective: Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) is the common element among
the Mediterranean countries. It can be considered a nutraceutical and functional food, thanks to its
bioactive compounds. It can act and modulate different processes linked to ageing and age-related
diseases related to a common chronic low grade inflammation. Depending on the cultivar, the growth
conditions, the period of harvesting, the productive process and time of product storage, EVOO could
contain different amount of vegetal components. Of course, the same is for table olives.
Methods: The aim of our review is to summarize the effects of EVOO and table olives on the immunemediated
inflammatory response, focusing our attention on human studies.
Results: Our report highlights the effect of specific molecules obtained from EVOO on the modulation
of specific cytokines and anti-oxidants suggesting the importance of the daily consumption of both
EVOO and table olives in the context of a Mediterranean dietary pattern. In addition, the different action
on immune-inflammatory biomarkers, are depending on the olive tree cultivar.
Conclusion: Thanks to their bioactive compounds, EVOO and table olive can be considered as nutraceutical
and functional foods. The beneficial effects analysed in this review will help to understand
the potential application of specific olive components as therapeutic adjuvant, supplements or drugs.