Over centuries of traditional use, Olive leaf has been recognised for a variety of health benefits. In the Mediterranean region, people have long used the olive tree leaves as part of their diet and in traditional medicine.
The healing properties of Olive Leaf Extract (OLE) have been well-researched and show it to be a powerful and entirely natural phytochemical. Late 19th century scientists, investigating the olive tree and the properties of its leaves, isolated a compound called Oleuropein, within which is a recognised antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and immune stimulating agent known as Elenolic Acid.
As many bacterial infections are becoming antibiotic resistant alternative treatments are increasingly sought and olive leaf extract is gaining a powerful reputation as a safe phytochemical.
Historically, in its role as a traditional medicine, olive leaf extract has been used for people with bacterial, viral and other infections including influenza, the common cold, meningitis, swine flu, HIV/ARC/AIDS, hepatitis B, EBV, encephalitis, herpes and shingles. It has also been used for pneumonia, chronic fatigue, blood poisoning, urinary tract infections, and infections in the teeth, ears or after surgery.
Other possible health benefits have been recorded in studies include lowering cholesterol and blood pressure and even reducing insulin sensitivity, so care needs to be taken if there are other pre-existing health conditions and medical advise sought.
Olive leaf continues to be highly regarded and researched.
ADVERSE EFFECTS: It is safe to take and there is little known about the adverse effects associated with olive leaf extract.
However, when olive leaf is being used to treat a chronic condition, reactions may include the following: fatigue, diarrhoea, headaches, muscle/joint aches or 'flu-like symptoms. This is frequently referred to as the "Herxheimer" or "die-off" effect and is believed to be a healthy reaction which will depend on the severity of the original infection, and will soon pass. However, if any such symptoms are experienced, it is recommened that you contact your healthcare professional for advice.
If you are allergic to plants in the Oleaceae family, such as lilacs, ash tress, jasmine, forsythia. then please be aware that some people may develop an allergy to olive leaf extract.
There is not enough research done on the safety of taking Olive leaf extract when pregnant or breastfeeding, therefore it not recommended.
DRUG INTERACTIONS: Due to a possible ability to lower blood pressure and blood-sugar levels in some individuals, olive leaf extract may increase the effects of blood pressure medications, insulin and medication used for diabetes. If taking such medications it is strongly advised that you contact a healthcare professional before taking olive leaf extract