Vicki Martin, Nutritionist and Naturopath
Naturopath Vicki Martin talks about Olive Leaves - a natural remedy that helps boost your immunity against many common bacteria and viruses.
Olive leaf has been used as a natural remedy since ancient times. Thousands of years ago, Egyptian healers were using it for a variety of health conditions. More recently in history, Spanish herbalists would grind up olive leaves for wounded soldiers to help cool their fevers and speed up their recovery.
In the nineteenth century, researchers started noticing that olive trees rarely seemed to suffer from diseases. They investigated what exactly made the trees so good at fighting off disease, and identified an active compound that they called oleuropein.
In 1969, American researchers analysed oleuropein in even more detail. They found that a specific compound called Calcium elenolate was responsible for oleurepein’s ability to fight off common viruses.
Other research has shown that Olive Leaves can also help to combat bacteria, fungi and even some common parasites. Some of the ways that Olive Leaves have been shown to work against these microbes include:
Dissolving the outer lining around bacteria cells, which makes the bacteria inactive
Interfering with a virus’s ability to produce important proteins
Stimulating people’s natural immunity and helping their white blood cells to better fight off the various bugs that can cause disease
Just because Olive Leaf is a natural remedy doesn’t mean it can’t have side effects for some people. As with most supplements, if you’re taking prescription medication, you must check with your doctor or healthcare professional before you take Olive Leaf. Some people find it can irritate their stomach too, so it’s important to always take it with food.
But also, not everyone knows that Olive Leaf can have a detoxifying effect. This means that when they first start it taking it, some people get headaches, nausea, or flu-like symptoms for the first 24-48 hours. Because of this, it may be a good idea to start taking Olive Leaf supplements at a low dose initially - you can always increase it once you know how your body deals with it.