This dressing is so simple to make and quite versatile. You can use it as a salad dressing, a marinade for chicken or fish, a pasta sauce, drizzled over steamed veggies or mix it into a rice or quinoa dish.
I like it because it has a base of healthy olive oil as opposed to most store-bought dressings that contain processed canola, corn, cottonseed or soybean oil. Those oils contain large amounts of omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are harmful in excess. A high omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in the diet can lead to cardiovascular disease, cancer, osteoporosis, and inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. (Source)
Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids which help to reduce belly fat and is rather low in the pro-inflammatory omega-6 fats that cause systemic inflammation. Olive oil is high in antioxidants that protect against diseases like cardiovascular disease, cancer and Alzheimer’s.
Oleic acid in olive oil reduces inflammation by reducing the C-reactive protein, an inflammatory marker. Another anti-inflammatory component of olive oil is oleocanthal. Oleocanthal has been shown to work like the popular anti-inflammatory drug ibuprofen.
Olive oil also lowers LDL cholesterol, prevents unwanted blood clotting and lowers blood pressure. Consume lots of olive oil for a healthy, happy heart!
Simple Tomato Basil Dressing
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- juice of half a lemon
- handful of fresh basil
- 1 small tomato, roughly chopped
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 2 cloves chopped garlic or 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 5 drops liquid stevia
Directions: Add all ingredients to a food processor and blend for one minute or until well mixed. Makes about 1 cup. Store in refrigerator for up to one week.
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