Look after your heart: The cardiovascular benefits of Olive leaf

olive leaf photoOlive leaf has traditionally been used medicinally for centuries and plays an important role in helping to protect and maintain cardiovascular health by:
  • Reducing high blood pressure
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Inhibiting LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol oxidation
  • Reducing cholesterol
  • Providing powerful antioxidant support to reduce oxidative damage
  • Preventing platelet aggregation and formation of blood clots
  • Protecting cardiovascular health
Cardiovascular disease is a major health problem worldwide and was responsible for 33% of all deaths in Australia in 2009, killing 1 Australian every 11 minutes. Cardiovascular disease is largely preventable through dietary and lifestyle interventions. Cardiovascular disease is an umbrella term that includes heart and blood vessel disease and stroke events. In the early stages of cardiovascular disease, many people do not have any overt symptoms so the disease progresses unnoticed until a major cardiovascular event occurs.

What makes Olive Leaf effective for cardiovascular health?

Fresh, hand-picked Olive leaves naturally contain valuable water and fat soluble active compounds. The primary active compound found in Olive leaf is the antioxidant oleuropein, considered responsible for the majority of the leaf’s main therapeutic activity. The higher the standardised oleuropein content of Olive leaf, the higher the therapeutic benefit. Olive leaf also contains other valuable compounds and important nutrients such as selenium, chromium, vitamin C, iron, zinc, beta-carotene and a broad variety of amino acids. These additional compounds, in conjunction with oleuropein, work together to improve the overall therapeutic effect of Olive leaf.

How does Olive leaf benefit your circulation?

Protection: Olive leaf’s cardioprotective effects are many and varied. Oleuropein and its by-products provide a wide range of anti-inflammatory activities and help to prevent platelet aggregation, where the blood becomes sticky and clumps together, which may in time lead to the formation of blood clots. Prevention: Olive leaf helps to prevent the build up of atherosclerotic plaque, characterised by hardening and narrowing of the arteries. Olive leaf inhibits the oxidation of low-density lipoproteins (LDL’s) or ‘bad cholesterol.’ High levels of oxidised LDL’s lead to increased atherosclerotic plaque formation and inflammation of arterial walls, increasing the risk of adverse cardiovascular events.

Reducing high blood pressure with Olive Leaf

The blood pressure reducing activity of Olive leaf has been well documented. High blood pressure is considered a major risk factor for a heart attack, and in particular stroke. Olive leaf helps to reduce high blood pressure by promoting vasodilation or ‘relaxation’ of the blood vessels, improving blood flow through the arteries, resulting in reduced blood pressure. Olive leaf appears to have a similar action in the body to that of ACE inhibitor medications. A small clinical study of 30 patients with essential hypertension were given 1600mg of Olive leaf extract daily (every four hours for three months after 15 days treatment with a placebo) which resulted in a statistically significant decrease in blood pressure in all patients and was considered to be well tolerated. This study also highlighted that patients who were previously treated with beta blockers noted a disappearance of their gastrointestinal symptoms during treatment with Olive leaf extract. It’s important to look for an Olive leaf extract that has been through a water and ethanol extraction process. Ask one of our in-store Naturopaths for the ‘gold standard’ in Olive Leaf.

Mr Vitamins recommends:

One of Mr Vitamins trusted suppliers is Herbs of Gold. Their Olive Leaf  extract uses fresh hand-picked Olive leaves to produce a superior quality extract, containing high levels of oleuropein.

Recommended Dose:

5mls once or twice daily in a little juice or water. You can swish in your mouth before swallowing for mouth ulcers or gargle before swallowing for a sore throat. You can also use Olive Leaf extract topically in a footbath for tinea, as a sitz bath for vaginal candida or as an antimicrobial diluted in water for cuts and scratches. Find out more about Herbs of Gold Olive Leaf