What is Olive Leaf extract?Oleuropein is a plant polyphenol found in both the fruit (olives) and leaves of the olive tree. While olives do contain high amounts of oleuropein the leaves contain the most. Oleuropein is the slightly bitter taste you find in extra virgin olive oil.
Why are antioxidants so important to your well-being?Antioxidants are your body’s defence against cellular damage. Your cells get damaged from simply living life, this is known as free radical damage. This type of cellular damage is a natural by-product of your bodies metabolism but also comes from poor diet, alcohol, too much sugar or fried foods, stress, environmental pollution, medication and smoking. Free radical damage is the main cause of ageing and disease but supplementing your diet with antioxidants such as olive leaf your can minimise the harm they cause and prevent disease before it happens.
Health benefits of olive leaf extract
- Heart disease. Olive leaf extract has unique properties that especially help heal and reduce your risk of developing heart disease. Animal and human studies have shown that this extract may lower blood pressure. It helps increase vasodilation or widening of the blood vessel walls, this action then allows blood to flow more freely which in turn decreases blood pressure. Thickened walls are one of the main causes of high blood pressure. Another way olive leaf extract may protect your heart is through reducing your cholesterol levels. Oleuropein helps prevent plaque formation on blood vessel walls, and it may also lessen ‘clumping’ of blood platelets that can cause strokes. This antioxidant also prevents LDL cholesterol from oxidising which then causes inflammation that can damage the heart and arteries.
- Diabetes. This extract helps prevent the free radical damage that occurs from being diabetic and having consistently high blood sugar levels. Recent studies in both animals and humans show that olive leaf extract helps lower blood sugar levels. Olive leaf extract reduces the time it takes to digest carbohydrates or sugars. This action allows the tissues to absorb the sugar instead of the digestive tract which helps keep blood sugar levels from spiking.
- Arthritis. Olive leaf extract is a natural anti-inflammatory making it ideal for helping conditions such as arthritis. Most types of joint disease are made worse by free radical damage to the connective tissue, inflammation and by the build up of uric acid in joints. This antioxidant can actually inhibit uric acid from building up in joints, which creates gout.
- Free radical damage to cells may be a contributor to the creation of abnormal cells. Oleuropein fights free radicals before the tissue damage can form. This antioxidant also may prevent the growth of tumours. It is especially helpful for breast, liver, prostate, brain, skin and blood tissue.