Olive Leaf Extract

Olive Leaf Extract

Olive leaf extract: nature's protector

the international symbol of peace is a dove carrying an olive branch. The olive tree, known as the `tree of life', grows fruit from which is extracted one of Nature's best oils -- olive oil. Now this exceptional tree is helping us overcome viral problems, bacterial assault, and a variety of other health challenges. The leaf of the olive tree has a component called oleuropein -- a natural antibacterial and antiviral constituent. Olive leaf extract, therefore, is a food supplement that is beneficial for bacterial infections and conditions where antibiotics are ineffective, such as viral infections like colds and flu, and fungal problems eg. candida. It is a non-toxic way to strengthen the immune system.

For many years olive growers have been frustrated in their attempts to make fermented olive products. Recent discovery of oleuropein's anti-microbial action has improved understanding of this problem and, at the same time, uncovered a new supplement with enormous potential. The International Olive Oil Council, an agency with twenty-three member nations with headquarters in Spain, has sponsored considerable research into olive oil over many years. In 1996 this organisation stated that the tree's olive green leaves may be even more advantageous for ingestion than the olive fruit and its oil.

In 1969 research by the pharmaceutical company Upjohn, published by the American Society for Microbiology, found that the active components of oleuropein, elenol acid and calcium elenolate, inhibited the growth of every virus, bacteria, fungi and protozoa they were tested against. Dr. Renis of this group demonstrated that oleuropein from olive leaf extract could kill herpes virus. In 1992 French biologists confirmed these results. They found that all of the herpes viruses were inhibited or killed by extracts from olive leaf. They included 28 references to the anti-viral action of oleuropein in their report.

The anti-viral activity of olive leaf extract is due to the action of oleuropein on the protein coat of the virus. It is thought to inactivate bacteria by dissolving the outer lining of the microbe. It interferes with viral infection and spread by inactivating the virus or preventing virus budding or shedding. Oleuropein can penetrate infected cells directly and stop viral replication without affecting the host cell. Olive leaf extract stimulates phagocytosis -- the action of immune cells engulfing and destroying microbes. Through the interference of amino acid processes of microbes and the stimulation of the immune response, olive leaf extract can prevent the onset, and assist the recovery from, colds, flu, and a range of viruses; yeast, fungal and mould problems; bacterial infections; and parasites. Dr Morton Walker, in his book Olive Leaf Extract, expresses his high opinion of olive leaf extract. He states that "No single treatment was known to work against any of the superpotent microbial invaders -- viruses, antibiotic-resistant bacteria, yeasts, fungi, protozoa, worms -- until now".

We are increasingly becoming aware of the threat of "superbugs". These are viruses, antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria and other microbes. Many once-treatable bacteria are now resistant to antibiotics resulting in chronic, vitality-sapping infection. New strains of virus causing illness or death are commonly reported. In addition to the development of these bugs, weakened immune system defences renders us more susceptible to infection and makes recovery more difficult. There is an increasing number of nosocomial, or hospital-acquired, infections in Australia and other countries with a history of high antibiotic use. Bacteria are well known for their ability to mutate in order to survive, and to mutate in response to antibiotics. Olive leaf extract is a potent supplement for people concerned with these issues.

For some very ill people, such as those with conditions like chronic fatigue or particularly heavy loads of virus or bacteria, olive leaf extract can offer exceptional benefits towards turning their health around. Olive leaf extract has been reported to significantly reduce the viral loads of chronically ill people. It is not unusual for people in these circumstances to experience detoxification symptoms. This occurs as a result of the "die-off" of pathogens that then need to be cleaned out of the body. This "die-off" is known as the Herxheimer reaction. Typical detoxification symptoms include headache and lethargy. It is not unusual to experience an increase in symptoms of muscular aches and pains or flu-like symptoms if the person has a high microbal load or toxic system. If the detoxification becomes unpleasant, reduce the amount of olive leaf extract you are having to slow down the process. You may wish to have some bowel or liver support like herbal fibre formula, too.

Keep in mind that detoxification symptoms are a positive sign. They may be unpleasant but are a positive indication to you that the microbes that have been contributing to your illness are being killed and their toxins are being eliminated. An increase in energy after taking olive leaf extract is also commonly reported as the microbe load on the body is reduced.
Olive leaf extract is an antioxidant with particular benefits for the heart and circulation. The Institute of Physiology at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences found that oleuropein from olive leaf extract increased coronary artery blood flow.

Researchers, including Dr Victor Petkov, also noted normalising of blood pressure and the reversing of irregular
heartbeats in cases of arrhythmia. Their results were published in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine in 1979. Scientists at the Institute of Pharmacological Sciences, University of Milan, learned that oleuropein hinders the biochemical events that are implicated in hardening of the arteries. They discovered that olive leaf extract prevented LDL cholesterol from oxidising. They also found a therapeutic connection between the extract and the prevention of peripheral vascular disease and coronary artery disease.

No toxic or other adverse side effects are evident, even in high doses. Olive leaf extract is a natural, non-toxic immune system builder. It is a safe, highly effective food supplement with potent and proven anti-microbal action.
Article copyright The Natural Health Society of Australia, Inc. and The Australian Vegetarian Society, Inc.
By Peter O'Hara

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