– Blood pressure: the oleuropein in the olive leaf is primarily responsible for its modulating effect on high blood pressure. It works by targeting and ameliorating arterial resistance or stiffness.
– Arterial health: arterial health is an important indicator of overall cardiovascular health. Endothelial cells, which line the arterial walls, are largely responsible for insuring adequate and even blood flow through the arteries, as well as regulating blood pressure.
Hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) is directly related to endothelial dysfunction, which leads to the accumulation of plaque in the arteries. In the course of the time, these plaques can cause a blockage of blood flow thus triggering a heart attack or stroke. The olive leaf extract “combats” endothelial dysfunction in a variety of ways.
Type 2 diabetes is already of epidemic scale. Chronic, elevated blood sugar leads to systemic oxidative stress, which gives rise to chronic inflammation that causes tissue damage and other bodily dysfunctions.
It also accelerates the aging process. In animal and in lab studies, olive leaf extract has been shown to lower blood sugar via several pathways including: slowing down the digestion of starches and simple sugars in the intestine and increasing the cells’ ability to uptake glucose from the blood.
The olive leaf protects healthy tissues from oxidative damage and increases the overall level of antioxidant activity body-wide.
In a dramatic head-to-head study, diabetic rats were treated with either olive leaf extract or glyburide (Diabeta®), a common glucose-lowering drug. By the end of the study, the antidiabetic effects of the olive leaf extract proved superior to those of the drug.
As mentioned above, since oleuropein enhances antioxidant activity throughout the body it is a potent cancer preventative.
Olive leaf extract protect cells from DNA damage due to oxidative stress, which is how malignant cells initially proliferate. It also disrupts the chemical signaling pathways that tumors rely on to organize, as well as inhibiting tumor advance factors.
In one recent study, animals with tumors were given oleuropein and within 9-12 days the tumors were gone or they significantly srunk!
Oleuropein and olive leaf extracts have numerous other mechanisms of action against cancer:
- They help prevent inflammation, another major promoter of tumor growth.
- Oleuropein, in breast cancer cells specifically, reduces malignant cells’ ability to respond to estrogen, the female hormone that many breast cancer cells depend on for their survival.
- Oleuropein inhibits the production of the “protein-melting” enzymes that cancer cells need in order to invade healthy tissues and metastasize to distant parts of the body.
- Oleuropein also suppresses an enzyme on which cancer cells rely to derive and store energy from dietary carbohydrates.
- 4. NEUROPROTECTION
Olive leaf extract is a vigorous anti-inflammatory agent , which protects the brain and central nervous system from strokes and other age-related degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.
There are numerous Mediterranean folk remedies with many references to olive leaves and their extracts as an effective prevention and treatment for osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout and plain old arthritis.
More recent research is aslo validating what herbalists have known for centuries and that is:
Olive leaf extract inhibits the inception of several types of arthritis.
– For instance, gout occurs when there is an accretion of uric acid crystals in joints, especially the joint of the big toe. Uric acid crystal accumulation indicates a problem with cells and their ability to properly recycle DNA and RNA.
Oleuropein halts the buildup of uric acid by inhibiting the enzyme (xanthine oxidase) which is the enzyme responsible for converting DNA and RNA into uric acid.
– Oleuropein can also successfully prevent and treat rheumatoid arthritis. Animal models demonstrate that when oleuropein is applied at the start of arthritic symptoms it effectively neutralizes them.
Moreover, microscopic examination of arthritic joint tissue from test animals after the administration of oleuropein showed significant improvement compared with untreated tissues. When used to treat fully-blown arthritis, oleuropein significantly reduced joint inflammation. The benefits were similar in cases of osteoarthritis.
Numerous systematic studies have concluded that the Mediterranean diet acts as a preemptive for virtually every disease concomitant with aging. Olive oil contains oleuropein and it has a chief role in the Mediterranean diet. However, olive leaves are even richer source of oleuropein than olive oil.
Historically, various olive leaf extracts have been employed by herbalists and traditional medicine practitioners to successfully treat a wide span of medical conditions including chronic ones and age-related diseases.
A corpus of scientific research suggests that the key to the Mediterranean diet’s proven health gains is its richness in antioxidant compounds: “These compounds are known as phenols and polyphenols present in a range of Mediterranean foods such as grapes, olives, berries and of course, red wine and extra virgin olive oil.
It is believed that these compounds are a key factor contributing to the Mediterranean region’s low incidences of coronary heart disease, obesity, hypertension, inflammatory conditions and certain cancers. They have also been directly linked to longer life expectancy.”
Since oleuropein-rich olive leaf extracts safely help prevent and/or treat many of the most common life- menacing, chronic and age- related diseases of our epoch, our advice is:
Give a try to this century-long natural remedy. You’ll be totally smitten by its effects!
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