Typically, olive leaf extract originates from the leaves of an olive plant. It possesses an active ingredient known as oleuropein. This nutrient is believed to be a major part of the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant components of olive leaf extract.
Olive leaf extract contains therapeutic properties that protect the digestive system, protects the central nervous system, prevents microorganism growth, lowers the risk of cancer, contains anti-inflammatory properties, reduces pain stimuli, inhibits oxidation or cell damage. These properties of olive leaf extract may be effective in aiding weight loss, promote heart health, and prevent herpes breakouts.
Using olive leaf extract may help with lowering cardiovascular risks such as atherosclerosis, reducing blood pressure, treating type 2 diabetes, promoting weight loss, destroying free radicals, improving immunity, combating herpes, reducing inflammation, inhibiting cancer.
It is important to start with a smaller dosage the first few times you use the olive leaf extract and gradually increase the dosage as the body allows.
The Health Benefits of Olive Leaf Extracts
Let’s take a closer look at the health benefits of olive leaf extracts.
The phytochemicals present in olive leaves help support the activity of Vitamin C, which is vital to our immunity. For centuries, olive leaves have been used traditionally to improve the immune system, support overall good health, and to alleviate symptoms of coughs, flu, and colds. According to studies, the olive leaf also contains antiviral properties that can effectively fight off a host of disease-causing microbes. These powerful compounds destroy invading organisms and don’t allow viruses to replicate and cause infection.
Improves Heart Health
It is believed that olive leaf extract can have positive effects on atherosclerosis, or narrowing of the arteries, which is the highest risk factor for heart disease. High levels of LDL, or “bad” cholesterol, and total cholesterol are risk factors for developing this disease. A study checked the effects of olive leaf extract on cholesterol and it showed that it significantly decreased cholesterol levels.
To treat herpes with olive leaf extract, have droplets on a cotton ball and place on the affected area. A study suggests that extracts of olive leaf contain antiviral and antimicrobial abilities that reduce the risk of the herpes virus to attack surrounding cells.
Protects Against Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s
Oleuropein is also shown to protect against Alzheimer’s disease. The antioxidant effects of olive leaf extract may also help with inhibiting damage or loss of dopamine neurons that are linked to Parkinson’s disease too. Free radicals can also destroy the skin by stopping the process of DNA formation. Thankfully, olive leaves are rich in phenols, which are antioxidants that neutralize free radicals and help improve the skin’s appearance.
Encourages Bone Formation
According to a study, the Oleuropein present in olive oil encourages the production of osteoblasts, large cells that support the development of the bone, which inhibits osteoporosis and reduction in bone mass.
Reduces Cancer Risk
According to a study, olive leaf extracts are able to stop the growth of cancerous cells. In fact, this study suggests that the extract contains powerful antioxidant properties and so has anticancer abilities. However, more research is needed in this regard. As a matter of fact, findings another indicate that the active ingredient in olive leaves can slow down the development of cancer cells in women who are suffering from breast cancer, as well as slow down the development of melanoma in cells.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Olive leaf extract may help lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Some studies found that olive leaf extract can significantly lower blood pressure. You must know that a lower blood pressure can, in turn, lower the risk of heart attack and stroke. Researchers found that oleuropein can also improve blood circulation and inhibit blood clotting. Olive leaf extracts can also regulate the blood sugar levels by improving the function of liver insulin receptors.
Combats Bacterial and Viral Infections
Oleuropein is particularly effective in combating micro-organisms such as bacteria and viruses. This property in olive leaf extract changes into elenolic acid in the body, which prevents the reproduction of amino acids in bacteria and viruses, thus blocking them from replicating and spreading.
Treats Type 2 Diabetes
Olive leaf extract has been found to treat type 2 diabetes by helping to improve insulin secretion in cells. The olive leaf extract may help reduce hyperglycemia, reduce blood glucose, reduce hyperinsulinemia (Excess insulin in the blood), plasma malondialdehyde, and many other signs of oxidative stress (an imbalance of free radicals that can harm the body), lower cholesterol, decrease serum glucose, and increase serum insulin.
However, more studies on the effects of olive leaf extract are needed. In fact, one study showed that people who took olive leaf extract tablets lowered their average blood sugar level and fasting plasma insulin levels. But remember that insulin levels after eating are significantly affected.
Supports Weight Loss
In addition to its heart-healthy uses and type 2 diabetes treatment, olive leaf extract could also help with weight loss as it can prevent high-fat, diet-induced obesity. It is believed that olive leaf extract inhibits obesity by controlling the activities of genes that affect weight gain. It can also aid in lowering food intake.
Side Effects and Precautions
Like we always advise for other herbs, if one is on any blood pressure medication or blood thinners or is diabetic, it is best to check with a doctor before using olive leaf extract. This is because it is possible to develop chronic respiratory allergic reactions.
The Bottom Line
Evidently, olive leaf extract contains an impressive range of health benefits. However, it is important to consult with your doctor before considering using olive leaf extract. Do not forget that some changes may be mild, as well as gradual over time. There are also people who may not experience any changes at all while using olive leaf extract. In addition, remember that olive leaf extract is not a cure-all supplement. However, it may be effective if your goal is to shed some weight. Olive leaf extract may also ensure an improved immune system and overall health.