Botanical Name: Olea Europaea
Other Common Names: african olive, brown olive, common olive, European olive, olive tree, small-fruited olive, wild olive
Habitat: Olea Europaea is native to southern Europe, northern Africa and western Asia. African olive (subspecies) is native to Africa, Madagascar, western Asia and the Indian subcontinent.
Description: Olive leaves are from the common olive tree, an evergreen tree usually 2-10m tall with branched upright stems. The leaves are arranged oppositely in elongated shapes 3-7cm long and 1-2cm wide with pointed tips. The leaves are glossy dark green on the front and silver-green or yellow-brown on the undersides. Small white flowers with four petals bloom and eventually spawn the purple-black or green fruit which is 15-30mm long and 6-20mm wide with a single hard seed surrounded by oily flesh.
Plant Parts Used: The oil of the fruits (olives) along with the dried leaves are used. The dried leaves are used to extract oleuropein, the active ingredient. Olive fruits can be eaten raw and used in cooking as well as the oil.
Therapeutic Uses, Benefits and Claims of Olive Leaf Extract and Oleuropein
Did you know that the olive leaf was first medicinally incorporated in Ancient Egypt? For the Egyptians, it was the Holy Grail of herbal healing. Olives and their leaves have played a huge role in Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean cultures throughout the ages, helping people greatly with their health. A true anti-aging compound, olive leaves have blood sugar and blood pressure regulating properties, while also providing cardiovascular, cognitive, joint, bone and immune support. They also have excellent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antifungal and antibiotic properties.
May Help Reduce Cancer Risk
When it comes to cancer treatment, olive leaf extract can help significantly inhibit the angiogenic process in your body. This is something that helps spread and trigger tumor growth. As per a research posted by the University of Ioannina (Greece) back in 2009, it was revealed that that the leaf extract contains superb antioxidant potency that can helped considerably lower endothelial cell production and reproduction.
Reducing Blood Pressure Symptoms and Complications
Olive leaf extract supplements contain anti-hypertensive compounds that can target cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension – effectively lowering your blood pressure and helping you steer clear of advanced heart condition.
According to a research conducted by the experts at the University of Indonesia, it was discovered that that along with helping patients relieve high blood pressure symptoms, the leaf extract also worked another wonder – and that was considerably lowering triglyceride levels – which contributes to LDL (bad cholesterol) production leading to clogged arteries.
Keeping Diabetic Symptoms Under Control
There was a study conducted on Type-2 diabetes and the application of olive leaf extract on how it the leaf extract supplements can help keep your blood sugar levels from abruptly sky rocketing. It was discovered that, for diabetics, taking controlled amounts of the supplements helped enhance insulin secretion in their bodily cells. As per the test — conducted on animals — it has been identified that the leaf extract may lower hyperglycemia, lower hyperinsulinemia, lower serum glucose, enhance serum insulin
Helps Manage Weight
By looking at how effective olive leaf extract is for curbing type-2 diabetes symptoms and how it helps steer you clear of symptoms associated with cardiovascular disorders, it make sense that the supplement will help manage your weight too.
As a matter of fact, an animal study in 2013 determined the effect of the olive leaf extract in preventing diet-induced obesity. Experts believe that incorporating a healthy lifestyle as well as taking olive leaf supplements on a daily basis can help keep your satiety maintained – leading to decreased food intake.
In 2016, a study saw researchers orally administer oleuropein to rats with obesity that were consuming a high-cholesterol diet. After 8 weeks, the rats had a lower body weight, less fat tissue, and an improved metabolic profile.
Enhanced Brain Functionality
Another reason why you should start using olive leaf extract supplements is because they can help improve your cognitive functionality. As per studies <replace>, it was discovered that oleuropein (which is one the primary properties of the olive leaf) can help lower symptoms associated with age-related brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Studies also suggest that there is a powerful link between Alzheimer’s disease and free radical cells – and as the olive leaf extract supplements contain antioxidants, they can help fight the destruction caused by those cancerous cells in your brain <replace>– which can also lead to memory loss.
Arthritis is a painful and debilitating bone disease where there is excessive swelling and acute pain in the joints. Swelling implies that there is inflammation and, when it comes to inflammation, the anti-inflammatory properties of olive leaf extract can be highly effective.
Olive leaf extract was tested on arthritic rats, their paws basically, to see whether or not it could help dial down the swelling and reverse the inflammatory effects. It succeeded in reducing the swelling in their joints in an experiment conducted in 2012.
When it comes to types of arthritic diseases, osteoarthritis is the most common in the US. There are over 33 million Americans affected by this debilitating disease. This primarily happens when the cartilage the center of the joints and the bones diminishes, leading to the bones rubbing with each other without a cushion, and that is painful. Not to mention the disease completely reduces mobility.
Research has also showed that olive leaf extract supplements have the necessary potency to reduce chronic and acute pain linked to this joint disorder. Moreover, it is also believed that the extract can significantly help lower enzymes such as cytokines, which trigger the inflammation process.
Related Products You May be Interested in
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The Herbal Resource may receive a small commission from sales of specific product (but at the same price to you).
Dosage and Administration
There are no official guidelines on how much olive leaf extract an average, healthy adult should take. In the limited number of human studies conducted, participants typically took 500-1,000mg per day (sometimes split between morning and afternoon dosing). Most supplement manufacturers recommend similar doses in their products. As always, consult a physician before taking any supplement if you’re concerned or treating a specific condition.
Possible Side Effects and Interactions of Olive Leaf and Oleuropein
Olive leaf extract is considered a dietary supplement by the US FDA. There are no studies showing adverse effects of regular, moderate use of olive leaf extract / oleuropein. However, there has not been a large body of research to date. Some people report mild stomach tightness/pain and headaches which subside after a short period (minutes to hours).