Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health
Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health

Olive leaf extract

What is olive leaf extract?

How to make olive leaf extract

How to juice olive leaves to get the best extract

Olive leaf extract dosage

Olive leaf extract side-effects

References

What is olive leaf extract?

Olive leaf extract is a liquid made from the leaf of the olive tree (Olea europaea). Olive oil is well known for its flavour and health benefits, but the leaf has also been used as a traditional medicine in the Mediterranean and Middle East for centuries. Olive leaves contain powerful antioxidants, and compounds with antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Olive leaf extract is commonly used to treat common colds and 'flu (influenza), yeast infections, and viral infections (13) such as Epstein-Barr, shingles and herpes. It has been shown to reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol, lower blood pressure (1,3,4) and increase blood flow (2,4) by dilating the arteries.

Olive leaf extract's high level of antioxidants (2,5,6,7,8,9,10) make it a useful anti-aging treatment (12). Olive leaf is especially potent when used in combination with other antioxidants. A study in 2005 showed that a liquid extract made from fresh olive leaves had an antioxidant capacity almost double that of green tea extract and four times higher than vitamin C (5).

Research shows that it may also be an effective treatment for liver, prostate, and breast cancers (11) and leukaemia (14).

Olive leaf extract is available as a liquid concentrate, dried leaf tea, powder, or capsule. However, if you have access to fresh-picked leaves, or a fresh-picked leaf extract, this is the most potent form, as they contain a broader range of undamaged healing compounds.

Fresh olive leaf and its extract have a bitter taste. It is best to take it as a capsule, or with a juice or other food to mask its taste.

How to make olive leaf extract

Wash some olive leaves, then dry them well. Then leave them in the sun or a warm dry place until the leaves are dry and brittle. Grind the dry leaves in a blender or food processor to a pulp. If you want, you can mix grape seeds in with your olive leaves for an extra-potent powder. You can use this powder as a tea, mix it with water or alcohol, or put it into a capsule if you prefer to take it in capsule form.

How to juice olive leaves to get the best extract

You can also make olive leaf extract in your juicer or blender. When you make a fruit or vegetable juice, simply add a couple of freshly picked olive leaves to the produce that you put through your juicer. This is the best way to take this extract, because it is fresh, raw, and undamaged through any processing or lengthy storage. Consuming it in a fresh juice is by far the most potent form.

Olive leaf extract dosage

If you buy olive leaf extract as a dietary supplement, the suggested dose for the capsules, powder, or tablets or liquid concentrate will be provided by the manufacturer. Most health care professionals recommend 1 to 3 capsules per day for overall health and disease prevention.

One olive leaf is the rough equivalent of one capsule, or about a quarter teaspoon of powder.

If you are juicing your own fresh olive leaves, it depends on the juice content of the leaves, and the effectiveness of your juicer. Perhaps start with a couple of leaves per day, and monitor the effects before making any increases.

Olive leaf extract side-effects

Being a natural remedy, olive leaf extract has no serious side-effects. If you have low blood pressure or are diabetic, start with a low dose and watch how you go.

If you take very high amounts it may cause headaches, dizziness, nausea, muscle pain, fatigue or diarrhoea.

References

1. Perrinjaquet-Moccetti et al. Food Supplementation with an Olive (Olea europaea L.) Leaf Extract Reduces Blood Pressure in Borderline Hypertensive Monozygotic Twins. 2008.

2. Somova et al. Antihypertensive, antiatherosclerotic and antioxidant activity of triterpenoids isolated from Olea europaea, subspecies africana leaves. 2003.

3. Khayyal et al. Blood pressure lowering effect of an olive leaf extract (Olea europaea) in L-NAME induced hypertension in rats. 2002.

4. Zarzuelo et al. Vasodilator effect of olive leaf. 1991.

5. Stevenson, L. et al. Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) Report on Olive Leaf Australia's Olive Leaf Extracts. Southern Cross University. 2005.

6. Benavente-Garcia et al. Antioxidant activity of phenols extracted from Olea europaea L. leaves. 2000.

7. Saija et al. In vitro evaluation of the antioxidant activity and biomembrane interaction of the plant phenols oleuropein and hydroxytyrosol. 1998.

8. Briante et al. Olea europaea L. leaf extract and derivatives: antioxidant properties. 2002.

9. Speroni et al. Oleuropein Evaluated In Vitro and In Vivo as an Antioxidant. 1998.

10. Pinelli et al. Quali-quantitative analysis and antioxidant activity of different polyphenolic extracts from Olea europea L. leaves. 2000.

11. Hamdi et al. Oleuropein, a non-toxic olive iridoid, is an anti-tumor agent and cytoskeleton disruptor. 2005.

12. Stevenson, L,. et al. In vitro Biological Activities of Pure Olive Leaf Extract & High Strength Olive Leaf Extract. 2006.

13. Micol V, Caturla N, Perez-Fons L, Mas V, Perez L, Estepa A. Olive leaf extract exhibits antiviral activity against viral haemorrhagic septicaemia rhabdovirus. Antiviral Res. 2005 Jun; 66(2-3):129-36.

14. Abaza L, Talorete TP, Yamada P, Kurita Y, Zarrouk M, Isoda H. Induction of Growth Inhibition and Differentiation of Human Leukemia HL-60 Cells by a Tunisian Gerboui Olive Leaf Extract. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2007 May;71(5):1306-12.