14 Apr

Herbal Spotlight: Olive Leaf Extract

By Nadia Brandon,

Olive leaf extract has been widely used, is considered safe, and is well researched.  However, as with all herbal medicines, caution should still be exercised when using any herb as part of a treatment or nutritional plan.

olive-leavesThe following information should not substitute for medical advice or conventional medical treatments.  Before taking any herb one is unfamiliar with, it is best to inform a doctor or qualified naturopath.

Olive leaf has recently come to the forefront in herbal medicine due to its incredible effectiveness against viruses, bacteria, fungi, and microbes in general.  It has also been used by patients managing chronic fatigue syndrome and candida infections.

The active ingredient found in olive leaf which assists in killing viruses, bacteria, fungi and microbes is Oleuropein.  Most herbal stores today sell olive leaf extract, and it is one of the fastest herbs to fly off of shelves.  Herbalists know its power and safety.  It is rare to find an herb which is as safe and yet as effective as olive leaf extract.

In the 1970s, the Upjohn Company conducted in vitro and in vivo studies with oleuropein to see how effective it was against viruses.  The Upjohn scientists found that “viruses which were killed by olive leaf are coxsackievirus, herpesvirus, and the parainfluenza3 virus” (Walker, 41).  Dr. Robert Lyons, of Budapest Hungary, conducted a study of 500 patients at his Robert Lyons Clinic using olive leaf extract.  Using placebo in a controlled study, he found a success rate greater than 85% for ailments ranging from lung conditions such as bronchitis to bacterial infections such as Helicobacter pylori.[1] Scientists and physicians postulate that oleuropein is effective because it inhibits microbial replication, thus shortening the life of the virus.

Candida (Candida albicans) is a virulent fungus which can quickly spread throughout the body.  Fungi make poisons called mycotoxins which produce discomforting symptoms of disease, especially for those with weakened immune systems or diabetes.  In women, candida can be particularly aggressive and cause vaginal infections with numerous symptoms.  Those that consume large quantities of red meat and/or refined sugar are more likely to be infected with candida.  (This is largely because candida thrives on the antibiotics found in meat and the food source refined sugar provides.)  Candida also often infects those with weakened immune systems.  If not treated early enough, candida may become a pathogen and become very dangerous to one’s health.

Symptoms of Candida albicans range from agitation to insomnia, appetite problems to digestive disorders, headaches, allergies and asthma.  In addition to rectifying one’s diet, olive leaf extract, taken daily, can greatly assist in the reduction and elimination of Candida albicans.

Olive leaf extract may be found at the Medicine Shoppe in Baltimore, Maryland or at most Whole Foods locations.  It may also be found at Smile Herb Shop in College Park Maryland, or at the Village Green Apothecary in Bethesda, Maryland. The dosing and length of time needed for olive leaf to be effective depends greatly on the length and severity of the illness.  A qualified naturopath can assist in making dosing recommendations.

[Source] Click here