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The health benefits of olive leaf extract

The health benefits of olive leaf extract

With properties that can kill infection, support immune function and help with inflammation, with the added bonus of being good for heart health too, there are many health benefits of olive leaf extract - possibly the new vitamin C.

The health benefits of olive leaf extract

Move over vitamin C! Maybe you should be reaching for another natural remedy this winter? We take a look at the many health benefits of olive leaf extract.

During winter, there’s no doubt that Vitamin C is considered the rock star supplement in the fight against cold and flu but there’s another natural remedy which may be a better weapon.

Benefits of olive leaf extract

  • reduces cardiovascular risk, like atherosclerosis
  • lowers blood pressure
  • helps treats type 2 diabetes
  • supports weight loss
  • eliminates free radicals
  • boosts immunity
  • fights herpes
  • reduces inflammation
  • prevents cancer

According to Ian Breakspear, a Senior Lecturer of Naturopathy at Endeavour College of Natural Health, who just completed research into olive leaf extracts, herbal medicine derived from the olive leaf can tackle a virus from a few different angles.

“The key chemicals in olive leaf extract aren’t just working to kill the infection, but are also supporting immune function and helping with inflammation, which reduces the severity of symptoms such as sore throat and aches and pains. The added bonus is that they are good for cardiovascular health too. It’s this more comprehensive approach to fighting cold and flu viruses that can make it a more interesting tool than vitamin C, which is an isolated individual chemical with a singular purpose,” he said.

“The main constituents of olive leaf extract are oleuropein and hydroxytyrosol, as well as other biophenols including p-coumaric acid, oleacein and luteolin. Oleuropein is a natural antioxidant with antimicrobial and antiviral activity, and has also been shown to reduce cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension, while improving vascular function and helping to lower blood lipids.”

Breakspear has spent the past 12 months comparing the phytochemical profile of commonly used olive leaf extracts in the Australian market and found that those containing fresh leaves, as opposed to dry leaves, had the highest level of bioactive compounds including oleuropein.

“The next time you pop into a pharmacy or health food store or seek advice from a herbalist or naturopath about how to prevent or ease the symptoms of a cold or flu, try olive leaf extract. And look for something with fresh leaves to ensure it has the highest concentration of beneficial active ingredients.”

Breakspear advises that it is best to speak with your health practitioner about its suitability and correct dosage.

Read more: 6 Health Benefits of Vitamin C

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