Olive Leaf Extract May Be The Key To Heart Health

| January 30, 2015

Back in 2008, we first told you about the heart health benefits of olive leaf extract, when a small human study found that olive leaf extract had a positive effect on the reduction of cholesterol and blood pressure levels.

Here’s a quick recap to refresh your memory: In this small trial, the researchers found that a daily supplement of 1000mg olive leaf extract reduced systolic and diastolic blood pressure by 11 and 5 mmHg, respectively, over eight weeks.

The findings of the study were published in the journal Phytotherapy Research, and also showed a reduction of in LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.

Olive leaf extract: A magic bullet for overall health

Since 2008, numerous human studies have been conducted on olive leaf extract. The most recent scientific review, published in the journal Complete Nutrition, indicated that two very powerful antioxidant compounds found in olive leaf extract, oleuropein and hydroxytyrosol, play a key role in its heart-protective benefits.

Oleuropein is a polyphenol produced by the olive tree, which makes it particularly robust and resistant against bacterial damage. Hydroxytyrosol is a major ingredient of virgin olive oil — one of the cornerstones of the heart-healthy Mediterranean diet. Although it is found in olives and olive oil, the highest concentrations occur in the leaf.

Polyphenols provide all-round heart protection by helping to prevent atherosclerosis (thickening of artery walls), preventing the oxidation of LDL cholesterol that triggers inflammation (olive leaf extract has multi-targeted anti-inflammatory effects) and reducing the formation of arterial plaques (thereby reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke).

Additionally, olive extract has also been found to help protect against other age-related chronic conditions and helps prevent many of the underlying factors that can lead to diabetes, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases (like Alzheimer’s and dementia), stroke, and arthritis.

A recent survey involving nearly 1,000 people who took olive extract (as a liquid tincture) revealed that 88 per cent experienced a variety of health benefits, including improved energy, reduced cold and flu symptoms, and relief from sinus congestion. Other benefits reported over the 20-day trial period included improvements in general wellbeing and in joint, skin and muscle health.

Olive leaf extract is most powerful when taken in liquid form, as a tincture, which can be found at any good natural health food store. There are no known side effects or contraindications associated with its use. However, olive leaf extract has a vasodilatory effect (relaxing of the artery walls) and patients taking blood-thinning medications like Warfarin should consult with their doctor before adding it to their regimen.

Here's to keeping your heart strong and healthy

Francois Lubbe
Editor
for The Cholesterol Truth

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Sources:

Phytotherapy Research, Volume 22, Pages 1239-1242, doi: 10.1002/ptr.2455, “Food Supplementation with an Olive (Olea europaea L.) Leaf Extract Reduces Blood Pressure in Borderline Hypertensive Monozygotic Twins” Authors: T. Perrinjaquet-Moccetti, A. Busjahn, C. Schmidlin, A. Schmidt, B. Bradl, C. Aydogan

Carluccio MA, Siculella L, Ancora MA, et al. Olive oil and red wine antioxidant polyphenols inhibit endothelial activation: antiatherogenic properties of Mediterranean diet phytochemicals. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2003 Apr 1;23(4):622-9.

Turner R, Etienne N, Alonso MG, et al. Antioxidant and anti-atherogenic activities of olive oil phenolics. Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2005 Jan;75(1):61-70.

Dell’Agli M, Fagnani R, Mitro N, et al. Minor components of olive oil modulate proatherogenic adhesion molecules involved in endothelial activation. J Agric Food Chem. 2006 May 3;54(9):3259-64.

Jemai H, Bouaziz M, Fki I, El Feki A, Sayadi S. Hypolipidimic and antioxidant activities of oleuropein and its hydrolysis derivative-rich extracts from Chemlali olive leaves. Chem Biol Interact. 2008 Nov 25;176(2-3):88-98.

Visioli F, Galli C. Oleuropein protects low density lipoprotein from oxidation. Life Sci. 1994;55(24):1965-71.

Masella R, Vari R, D’Archivio M, et al. Extra virgin olive oil biophenols inhibit cell-mediated oxidation of LDL by increasing the mRNA transcription of glutathione-related enzymes. J Nutr.2004 Apr;134(4):785-91.

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Category: Natural Cholesterol-Lowering Alternatives

Comments (1)

Testimonials are based on the personal experience of individuals. Results are not typical and the potential benefits of taking any drug or supplement may vary depending on your individual needs and health requirements. Please consult your GP before making any changes to your medical regimen.

  1. Latonya says:

    I’ve heard about Olive Leaf Extract and that it is a miracle cure, even for people with HIV.

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