Olive Leaf Benefits: Use Olive Leaf Extract for Blood Pressure Treatment, Cholesterol Control, and More

Wondering about olive leaf benefits? Consider that olive leaf extract has proven to be as effective in blood pressure medication and for lowering cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood sugar.

According to a study recently published in Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, a compound derived from the leaves of olive trees may offer a new way to treat malignant mesothelioma.

© Pathastings | Dreamstime.com

The leaves of the olive tree may not be as legendary as its Superfruit, the olive, but even the ancient Egyptians used olive leaf extract for medicinal purposes. Today, researchers are confirming that olive leaf benefits health in many ways, including its usefulness as an effective high blood pressure supplement and its ability to combat the other crucial heart disease risk factor: high cholesterol.

In recent years, scientists have discovered the amazing ability of this potent natural medicine to safely reduce blood pressure and cholesterol in a variety of human studies.

Olive Leaf Extract: Clinically Proven

A couple of studies illustrate olive leaf benefits patients with prehypertension and stage 1 hypertension, making it an effective high blood pressure supplement. After discovering that it effectively treated hypertension in rats, Swiss and German researchers reported in 2008 in the medical journal Phytotherapy Research that an extract of olive leaf benefits heart health by reducing blood pressure as well as cholesterol in adults with prehypertension.[1]

Twenty sets of identical twins with mild high blood pressure (prehypertension) were involved in two different experiments, each lasting for eight weeks. By using twins, the researchers could increase the power of their data by eliminating some of the uncertainties caused by genetic variations between individual people.

In the first experiment, one group received 500 milligrams olive leaf extract while the other group received lifestyle advice only. In the second experiment, one group received 500 milligrams olive leaf extract per day while the other group received 1000 milligrams. Blood pressure and cholesterol, along with heart rate, weight, and blood sugar were measured at the start and at several time points throughout the study.

Olive Leaf Benefits Cholesterol, Too

By the end of the two months, participants who received the high-dose of olive leaf extract experienced a significant decrease in blood pressure. In those taking 1000 mg per day the average systolic blood pressure dropped from 137 mmHg to 126 mmHg and the average diastolic blood pressure was reduced from 80 mmHg to 76mmHg. Blood pressure remained unchanged in the low-dose and advice-only groups.

Cholesterol levels also decreased in those that received high dose olive leaf extract as well as in those that took only 500 mg. Reductions in low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) was found to be dose-dependent when pairs of twins were compared. That is, the 1000 mg dose lowered LDL-C more than the 500 mg dose.

Olive Leaf Extract Pitted Against Common Prescription Drug

The second study was larger and involved patients with stage 1 hypertension rather than prehypertension. In this double-blind, randomized, controlled clinical trial, olive leaf extract was compared to Captopril, an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor commonly used for the treatment of hypertension.[2]

A total of 232 subjects took either 500 mg olive leaf extract as a supplement for high blood pressure or the standard Captopril dose (12.5 to 25 mg -depending on initial response) twice daily for eight weeks.

After eight weeks of treatment, both groups experienced similar, significant reductions in blood pressure. In both groups, average systolic blood pressures decreased from 148-149 mmHg to 135-138 mmHg and average diastolic blood pressures decreased from 93 mmHg to 87-88 mmHg.

But, the olive leaf benefits exceeded that of Captopril in that the olive leaf extract group also experienced statistically significant reductions in triglyceride levels, with an average reduction of 7.8 percent. They also experienced decreases of 2.8 percent in total cholesterol and 2.9 percent in low-density lipoprotein (LDL).Those taking the Captopril received no benefits to their cholesterol or triglyceride levels.

An Added Bonus…

Olive leaf extract is not only a supplement for high blood pressure and cholesterol, there’s evidence for its ability to treat diabetes as well.

Research indicates olive leaf extract also treats a third risk factor for heart disease: high blood sugar and insulin in type 2 diabetics. A daily dose of 500 mg olive leaf extract significantly lowered average blood sugar and insulin levels is a double-blind study in 79 type 2 diabetic adults.[3]

While there are many useful supplements for the effective natural treatment of hypertension and high cholesterol, olive leaf extract is possibly unique in its ability to treat both conditions at once. Impressively, it also appears to be a safe and effective natural treatment for diabetes.

If you want to get all of these olive leaf benefits, aim for a dose of 500 mg twice a day. For more ideas on how to enhance your cholesterol and blood pressure control, browse our Heart Health topics.

In addition to using olive leaf as a supplement for high blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar, olive leaf benefits patients with the flu or other pathogenic infections as it is a powerful immune booster. Learn more about these olive leaf benefits in our post “11 Best Home Remedies for Flu: Treatments Backed by Scientific Studies.”

[1] Phytother Res. 2008 Sep;22(9):1239-42.
[2] Phytomedicine. 2011 Feb 15;18(4):251-8.
[3] J Med Food. 2012 Jul;15(7):605-10.

Originally published in 2013, this post is regularly updated by the editors of University Health News.

As a service to our readers, University Health News offers a vast archive of free digital content. Please note the date published or last update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Kathleen Jade, ND

Dr. Kathleen Jade is a naturopathic physician and served for many years as the Medical Director and Editor-In-Chief of Natural Health Advisory Institute. She has been licensed as a primary … Read More

View all posts by Kathleen Jade, ND

Comments Comments Policy
  • I checked where to purchase Live leaf extract and AMazon had plenty but no one said anything about blood pressure. Any advice?

  • Hi Kathleen (we share a great name!),

    There are two reasons I’m not surprised that you didn’t see specific mention about olive leaf extract lowering blood pressure. The first reason is that it is actually illegal in the US for supplement makers and sellers to say say that a supplement treats a specific disease (even if studies clearly show that it does).

    The second reason is that besides treating high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and high blood sugar, olive leaf extract is an effective antimicrobial and immune enhancer. In fact, it is problably better known for its effects on the immune system and for its ability to kill bacteria and viruses than it is for its effects on blood pressure.

    Nevertheless, it’s easy to find and purchase olive leaf extract.. As I recommend in the article above, I’d start with 500 mg twice a day.

    I hope this answers your question,

    Dr. Kathleen Jade

  • Co-relative phrases: “Olive leaf extract is not only…” should be “Not only is olive leaf extract…” followed by “but also…”.

  • I am re-searching olive leaf as recommended for use in candida. However, I am on plavix and three beta blockers, and wanted to make sure it would be safe. Everything I check out…aged garlic, oregano oil, seems to have an interaction. I am not sure what to use. All the candida cleanse kits have these ingredients. Thanks

    • Hi Judy, unfortunately we can’t answer questions about your specific situation. It’s best that you contact your doctor. Thanks for reading!

  • I’ve bought some olive leaf extract (liquid) and it was quite expensive. I am wondering if one gets the same benefits from ingesting the actual leaf-powder? Thanks.

  • Do you recommend a brand? Capsule ok? What are the side effects of taking olive leaf 500 mg twice daily (total of 1,000 mg a day?)

    • Hi Mary, unfortunately we cannot recommend specific brands. You may want to contact your doctor or pharmacist for assistance.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Enter Your Login Credentials
This setting should only be used on your home or work computer.