Scientific Name(S): Olea europaea L. Family: oleaceae.
Common Name(S): Olive leaf
Botany: Olive is a small evergreen tree native to Mediterranean regions. The characteristic green to blue-black fruit of this tree yields a useful, edible oil. Both the oil and the dried green-grayish colored leaves are used medicinally
Properties of olive leaf extract
It is an antiseptic astringent herb that lowers fever and blood pressure, improves kidney function and has a calming effect.
The leaves contain secoiridoids - including oleuropein, as well as ligustroside and oleacein. It further contains triterpenoids (oleanolic acid and uvaol), sterols, flavonoids (chrysoeriol, apigenin and luteolin glycosides) and various other phenolic acids.
Uses of Olive Leaf:
The olive leaves possess hypotensive properties in animal experimentation and have been used in humans for hypertension (possibly only for mild cases). The olive leaves also have hypoglycemic, renal, and antimicrobial effects."
Side Effects of Olive Leaf:
A few individuals have reported a slight headache due to detoxification. If this should occur, any common pain reliever seems to work to curb the discomfort.
Toxicology: Potential toxicity of olive leaf is not well known. Oleuropein in doses up to 1 g/kg body weight in albino mice did not provoke lethality in an analysis on olive leaf. The German Commission E monographs list no known risks associated with the plant. One source states the drug as causing gastric symptoms, and suggests that it be taken with meals because of this irritant effect.
Summary: The olive tree dates back to 3500 BC. The leaves possess hypotensive properties in animal experimentation, probably as a result of vasodilator activity. The leaves have been used in humans for hypertension, but the leaf's effects may only be useful in mild cases. Olive leaf also exhibits hypoglycemic, renal, and antimicrobial effects. Toxicity of the plant is not well known, but there seems to be little risk with its use.
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