The close links of Crete with Europe are widely recognized, since Crete is the place where the continent received its name. In Greek mythology, lust-loving Zeus, in the guise of a white, winged bull carried off on his back the beautiful princess of Phoenicia, Europa, daughter of king Agenor, to the island of Crete where he fathered the progenitors of a magnificent civilization known as the Minoans.
The olive is a favorite subject in Minoan art. Olive trees, olive branches and olive blooms are depicted in many wall paintings and relief works, found at the palace of Knossos ( 1600-1400 BC) and displayed in the Heraklion Museum today.
A truly priceless treasure indispensable in the daily nutrition of the Cretans since the dawn of history. It is produced in the beautiful olive groves which cover the hilly and mountainous embossed soil of the Sitia's land, under ideal soil and climatic conditions (extensive periods of sunshine, (mild and sweet winters, cool summers, natural fertile soils, clean atmosphere).
Αnzel Keys' renowned study of seven countries, which was published in 1980, revealed that the health level of Cretans was the highest in the world. Cancers and cardio-circulatory disease were rare, since out of 100.000 people on Crete, there were only 9 deaths attributed to these diseases as opposed to 466 in Finland.
It was further proven that this was largely due to the dietary habits of the Cretan, people, whose basic ingredient is olive oil.
Along the long and narrow body of the province of Sitia stretching from west to east, a high mountain range lays as a protective shield against the strong hot south winds blowing from the Libyan Sea.
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