Athan Gadanidis has been an advocate of Greek olive oil for some time, especially when it comes to its health benefits, and now more so than ever.

The Greek Canadian was diagnosed with prostate cancer in October 2018 and since then has offered himself to take part in a pilot study at the University of Athens looking into the potential health benefits of oleocanthal-rich olive oil in treating prostate cancer.

Since his diagnosis, Mr Gadanidis has been treated naturally, aside from two emergency anti-androgen injections.

As part of the trial he has been taking large doses of oleocanthal-rich olive oil with stunning results. It has been linked to reducing his PSA levels, and decreasing or halting growth of the prostate’s enlargement, which certain doctors have reportedly dubbed as an “unusually positive response” to anti-androgen injections.

Oleocanthal-rich olive oil, also known as ‘agoureleo’, is made from early harvest green olives, and was referred to as ‘medicinal’ by ancient Greeks the likes of Hippocrates and Dioscorides.

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Since 2005, research has been undertaken on the oil for its anti-inflammatory properties, which were discovered by Dr Gary Beachamp. He recognised the peppery taste at the back of the throat had an effect identical to ibuprofen, and since has seen clinical trials pop up around the world studying the potential to treat not only cancers, but the oil’s potential use in preventing or treating cardiovascular, neurodegenerative and autoimmune diseases.

The trial Mr Gadanidis is taking part in, is being run by Dr Prokopios Magiatis and Dr Eleni Melliou. The pair developed the first university laboratory to analyse the health benefits of olive oil. The analysis is done through nuclear magnetic resonance, which is an analytical chemistry technique, which can evaluate a sample’s content, purity and molecular structure.

They were also apart of the academic group that founded the not-for-profit World Olive Center for Health. Based in Athens, it is dedicated to researching and educating people about the health benefits of olive oil.

Given he is currently the only subject of the trial, in a bid to give researcher’s the opportunity to further delve into olive oil’s potential health benefits, Mr Gadanidis together with his partner Marilyn Harding launched a Go Fund Me campaign a month ago to finance the pilot study.

Other volunteers will be sought out to take part, upon consultation with each individual’s doctor.