Nourish - What’s the scoop on: Olive Leaf Extract
I would say, it’s safe to presume that everyone is familiar with the humble olive. The health benefits of olive oil are world-renowned, but there’s another part of the olive tree that is less well-known.
That is the olive leaf.
Olive leaves may not be as famous as the olives themselves, but they’re most certainly worth shining the spotlight on. These unassuming leaves provide incredible health benefits, and that’s what this blog is all about.
Let’s get the scoop on Olive Leaf Extract.
Unsurprisingly enough, olive leaves come from the same tree that produces olives used in olive oil, botanically known as Olea europaea.
The beloved olive has been cultivated and admired for thousands of years and has been a popular and highly revered traditional herbal remedy for many of these years.
It should be pointed out early on, however, that the two are vastly different from one another. Olive leaf extract comes from the leaves and should not be confused with olive oil which comes from the fruit.
Olive leaf extract offers potent antifungal, antiviral, antibacterial and antimicrobial activities.
This makes olive leaf extract incredibly effective for battling microorganisms like fungi, bacteria, and viruses.
And what does that mean for us?
Well, thanks to these antiviral properties, olive leaf extract is able to help fight off the common cold and even battle viruses that are known to cause respiratory infections and the flu.
Historically, olive leaves have a long traditional use of supporting the immune system, helping to relieve symptoms of coughs, colds and flu, aswell as generally maintaining overall good immune health.
That makes this herb an absolute must-have in the medicine cabinet for winter health prevention as well as treatment.
In addition to being antiviral, it’s also a marvelous ally against bacterial infections. Examples of bacterial infections include whooping cough, strep throat, ear infection and urinary tract infection (UTI).
Furthermore, it’s also a wonder at fighting fungal infections. An excellent example of this would be candida overgrowth.
I’ve written a blog post going into detail about this more if you’d like to check it out in more depth.
Olive Leaf is an effective killer of harmful bacteria, viruses, yeasts and fungi. If you’re experiencing fungal issues such as athlete’s foot, for example, try olive leaf extract.
Then of course you have the anti-parasitic properties to help fight against parasitic infections. Olive leaf is a highly effective tool in helping to eliminate parasites such as tapeworms, giardia, pinworm and roundworm for example.
Parasites become embedded into their chosen environment and are very difficult to eliminate. Olive Leaf Extract offers up it’s powerful anti-parasitic actions to help fight against these foreign invaders.
Packed with Antioxidants
One of the most revered active compounds found in Olive leaf extract is oleuropein. This powerful polyphenol is under constant scientific research to discover more about its vast health benefits. Whilst the research continues, one major property we do know about is that Oleuropein is a powerful antioxidant.
Antioxidants essentially serve as guards to help protect our healthy cells from attack and damage from free radicals.
In short, antioxidants are molecules present in the body that counteract oxidative stress.
The process of oxidation in our bodies produces unstable chemicals. These are known as free radicals. Free radicals cause damage to cell walls and membranes and other structures. Furthermore, they’re linked to a variety of diseases including heart disease and even cancer.
Free Radicals come from all kinds of things in life, whether as a natural by-product of our own internal functions or from the outside. For example, overexposure to the sun, pollution, smoke, alcohol, poor diet, stress etc.
Antioxidants are compounds in foods that scavenge and neutralise free radicals. By consuming a plethora of different antioxidant-rich foods from fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, resins, teas and such, you’ll help your body to “scavenge” these free radicals.
Some examples of foods high in antioxidants include:
Vegetables – broccoli, sweet potato, pumpkin, kale
Green tea – matcha especially
Cacao – raw cacao
Nuts – Brazil, macadamia, walnut
Seeds – Chia, hemp, pumpkin
Herbs/Spices – oregano, peppermint, rosemary
Honestly, the list can just go on and on!
These antioxidants naturally aid in an enormous way to the human body. They offer anti-inflammatory benefits which are hugely beneficial to anyone suffering from, well most things!
Menstrual cramps, arthritis, cuts/wounds, respiratory infections, muscle pain. Again, an endless list in the making!
Ongoing research is continuing to help us learn more about olive leaf and cardiovascular health. Currently, science suggests that olive leaf extract helps stop LDL (bad) cholesterol from building up in the arteries. Additionally, it’s shown to help lower blood pressure and increase blood flow. Because of this, it’s hopeful that it’ll help with reducing the risk of heart disease.
More research is needed, but currently, studies are also suggesting that olive leaf may be useful in helping to restore a normal heartbeat in those with arrhythmia. It’s all very exciting stuff!
As winter approaches and the bugs and lurgies come out to find us, it’s always a nice thing to know that there’s something available to have our backs out there in the throes of things.
Try Comvita Olive Leaf Extract to help you this winter in supporting a healthy immune system.
Comvita Olive Leaf liquid is extracted fresh on Comvita’s farm in rural Queensland, Australia. They’ve been growing, harvesting and bottling high-quality olive leaf products for over 20 years.
We also have Comvita Olive Leaf Capsules if taking it in liquid form isn’t an option.
Not for use during pregnancy or lactation. If you have a medical condition or take medications, please consult with your doctor before use.
Additional Blog Posts That May Interest You
- What’s the Scoop on: Matcha
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- Foods to Naturally Increase Your Skin’s UV Resistance
Any questions? Drop into your local Nourish store to chat with our expert team and explore our full range of foods, supplements and skincare. You can also find our full product range in our online store.
*Please note that while we are knowledgeable about our products and nutrition, this blog should never be a substitute for medical advice and attention.
Please remember that you should always obtain the all-clear from your doctor before starting any new supplement plan or diet if you’re on any medication