While you've probably used olives in some form or another—to eat or cook with, in the form of olive oil, possibly—you might be unaware of all of the benefits that olive leaf can provide. One of the most powerful polyphenols found in olive leaf extract, oleuropein, is known to supply antioxidant benefits that can help prevent free radical damage and contribute to improving your health in numerous other ways. Here are some of the positive ways that olive leaf extract can improve your overall wellness and lifestyle:
1. It can help lower blood pressure.
Olive leaf extract contains polyphenols and antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation and promote better blood pressure health, as well as lower cholesterol levels. In a study that compared the effects of olive leaf extract to those of the hypertension-treating drug captopril, olive leaf extract was shown to work just as well as the prescription drug at lowering high blood pressure.
2. It can possibly fight diabetes and cancer.
According to a study in the Journal of Medicinal Food, olive leaf extract and its oleuropein content may be able to benefit those with diabetes by helping to prevent damage from oxidative stress, regulating glucose levels and minimizing the negative effects that can occur when blood sugar skyrockets. Additionally, oleuropein can aid with lowering your chance of acquiring cancer by helping to prevent tumor-encouraging inflammation and stopping the production of certain enzymes that cancer cells thrive on.
3. It can boost your immune system.
James R. Privitera, M.D., says that the polyphenols in olive leaf can benefit your immune system by preventing viral infections from spreading. In addition, olive leaf can fortify your immune system's defense against possible infections stemming from bacteria, so you have a better chance at fighting off an illness before it hits really hard.
4. It can improve your skin.
Applying olive oil or creams with olive leaf extract to your skin can provide a variety of positive effects, like extra hydration, redness reduction and better blood flow. Additionally, olive leaf's antioxidant properties can contribute anti-aging effects by fighting oxidative and environmental stress, which can make your skin appear older.
5. It can help improve arthritis symptoms.
The anti-inflammatory effects of olive leaf may be able to reduce pain in the joints and increase mobility in those with arthritis. Olive leaf can also help control swelling in the joints and promote normal, healthy joint function.
6. It might promote fat loss.
Scientists at the University of Queensland in Australia conducted a study on rats with metabolic syndrome, obesity and high-calorie diets to determine the effectiveness of olive leaf extract at promoting fat loss. The study concluded that the rats who were given coffee with fortified olive leaf extract exhibited weight loss and overall improvement in their heart and liver health as well as metabolic signs. This study might provide insight into whether olive leaf extract is an effective weight loss contributor in humans, but more research is needed to come to a solid conclusion.
Olive leaf extract might be a little-known supplement, but it can provide some pretty prominent health support. As with all supplements, make sure you speak to your doctor before using olive leaf extract. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding or anticipating surgery, you should not use olive leaf extract.
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