Olive Leaf Extract is a very potent broad spectrum natural antimicrobial that has been used since ancient times to promote health and control infection. Olive trees (and their fruit and leaves) have long been a mainstay of Mediterranean culture, both as a healthy food source and a powerful medicine. The Greek physician Hippocrates, also known as the “Father of Medicine,” prescribed olive oil to treat muscular pains, ulcers, and cholera. The winners of the original Greek Olympics were crowned with a wreath of olive leaves as their reward. Over the ages, there have been numerous medicinal uses for olive oil.
The Benefits of Olive Leaf Extract
The therapeutic benefits of olive leaf extract are attributed to its bioactive compounds called oleuropeins. In the late 1960’s, Upjohn was able to isolate ilinolic acid (an isolate of oleuropein) and found that it was so powerful that it stopped every virus that it was tested against including the common cold in humans. The antibacterial action of oleuropeins is thought to stem from their ability to dissolve pathogen cell membranes and disrupt critical amino acid production, which interferes with their ability to replicate and prevents them from spreading.
Heart Healthy Too
In addition to their antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, oleuropeins have been shown to promote relaxation of arterial walls, thereby reducing hypertension.