Are you looking for a new dietary supplement? One option is olive leaf extract from the Mediterranean tree. When we think of products from the olive tree the most well-known one is probably olive oil. However, there are various other products including olive aminos that include most of the amino acids found in the human body. However, there are actually many other supplements available including ones made from extracts found in the olive leaves. This is another option.
You might be wondering if extracts from olive leaves are healthy. It might provide several health benefits including antioxidants, anti-inflammation, and anti-cancer. These are all key benefits that can greatly benefit your health. For example, inflammation can be caused by foods like white sugar and refined grains.
It might also lead to serious health conditions like type-2 diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. So it’s critical to reduce inflammation as much as possible to reduce your risk for such health conditions. Various natural/organic foods can help with this process. So the olive tree’s the leaf a less-known leafy green you might want to know more about.
What Is the Olive Tree?
Olive trees are a tree that’s found in the olive family known as “Oleaceae.” We usually think of the tree that produces well-known lives as being an olive tree. Fun Fact: This family of trees has about 900 species that grow throughout the world.
The olive trees are famous for being sturdy. They often have leaves that are spear-shaped. Meanwhile, the leaves range from light brown to dark green.
One olive tree is actually one of the oldest ones in human history. It’s also one of the first plans humans wrote about and drew in the artwork. The history of olive trees dates back to about 3500 BC. Meanwhile, several other Mediterranean countries have also grown olive trees for several thousands of years.
The olive tree’s fruit can be consumed as fruits added to salads, sandwiches, and beverages. Meanwhile, the fruit can also be crushed to produce olive oil. This is used for functions like salad dressings and cooking oil. This is a key ingredient used in Mediterranean cooking.
There are several key features of olive trees. They can survive in various tough environments and up to thousands of years.
In fact, it’s interesting that when olives are damaged by factors like fires and storms, the root systems aren’t affected. After the roots recover from such events the tree can start growing again.
Fun Fact: The olive tree’s fruit is technically a “drupe.” It can be picked when it’s green/unripe or picked when it’s black/ripe. Sometimes the fruits from an olive tree can be consumed as either food or oil. However, other times it must be treated to remove some bitterness.
Olives that are turned into oil undergo a process of being pressed using a press. This removes the oil, which can then be used for functions like cooking oil. In fact, olive oil has been trending in recent years as an ingredient for low-carb cooking/baking.
What Is Olive Leaf Extract?
First, what is this exact all about? This is a natural supplement. The olive tree’s leaves have been used in the Mediterranean region for thousands of years for diet and medicine. The reason is that they contain many important plant-based chemical compounds.
These “polyphenols” exist naturally in different plants. Studies suggest that they could help to protect people from various health conditions. They include cancer and heart disease, which are both serious diseases that affect many people today.
The tree’s leaves are believed to provide various health benefits including:
- Nervous system
- Lower cancer risk
- Lower inflammation
- Microbe growth
- Less cell damage
- Digestive system
Based on these benefits the extract might help boost weight loss, improve heart health, and prevent STD outbreaks like herpes.
Here are some of the main benefits you might get from extracts from olive leaves:
The olive tree extract might also help with high blood pressure. In a 2011 study, researchers gave people high blood pressure extracts from olive leaves or meds for high blood pressure. After 2 months the blood pressure was lower for both groups.
Studies show olive leaf-sourced extracts might help to lower the risk of type-2 diabetes. A 2013 study showed that after 3 months the extract group had much lower insulin sensitivity versus the fake pill group.
Some early studies show that olive leaf extract could help to lower cholesterol levels. For example, in a 2015 study, a group of rats was given extracts. The extract group had much lower cholesterol levels.
Olive tree leaves have a chemical compound that could help to prevent weight gain. In one 2016 study researchers provided the compound to obese rats. In 2 months the rats had less bodyweight/fat tissue and better metabolism. Another study found that the chemical compound lowered body weight in fat mice.
Commercial Products Made from Olive Trees
These products are made from olive oil. They’re a good option if you’re looking for cosmetics made from natural/organic ingredients. In that case, it’s a good option because it helps to prevent unwanted side-effects caused by synthetic ingredients. That’s a situation you’ll want to avoid when you’re trying to improve your appearance.
2. Olive Leaf Extract
This is one of the lesser-known products from the olive tree but definitely worth considering. Studies show that the leaves might provide benefits like anti-inflammation, antioxidant, and anti-cancer. The leaves might also help to fight type-2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
3. Olive Oil
This is easily the most famous product made from the olive tree. The oil is used for different functions like cooking oil and salad dressing. There are also different types of oil based on the amount of processing that’s done.
The healthiest option is extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). This has the least amount of processing so it’s the best option in terms of nutritional value.
This is made from olive tree farming and olive oil production. Today many countries are looking for an alternative to fossil fuels due to the limited supply and CO2 emissions they cause. Olive trees can provide one of the possible biofuels that could be used as a “green” option.
This is probably the most obvious product based on the tree but is definitely worth noting. Green olives are unripe and black olives are ripe fruits. Both are high in healthy fat and various vitamins/minerals. You can add olives to different foods like salads and sandwiches.
Another issue when picking olives is whether you go with regular or pitted olives. While pitted olives are more convenient it’s often recommended to buy non-pitted ones since nutrients are lost in the pitting process. You’ll want maximum nutrition like when buying olive leaf extract.