Many Americans and those around the world are having real issues with hypertension, or high blood pressure.
It leads many to a lifetime of medications, expenses, and possible side effects, not to mention a lower quality of life.
But what if nature has some solutions that could prevent some of us from ever getting to that place to begin with?
Enter olive leaf extract.
Researchers from the University of Reading in the UK, Massey University in New Zealand, and Commonwealth Scientific Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) in Australia teamed up to test the effects of olive leaf extract on pre-hypertensive (those close to having high blood pressure) males.
The results hold promise.
The 60 test subjects consumed either olive leaf extract (136 mg oleuropein; 6 mg hydroxytyrosol) or a polyphenol-free control daily for six weeks.
(Polyphenols are believed to assist in lowering high blood pressure, so it is important that the control not be consuming polyphenols.)
After the six-week period, test subjects switched to the alternate method following a four-week washout cycle.
The researchers, whose work was published in the June 2017 edition of the European Journal of Nutrition, found that not only were both systolic and diastolic blood pressure significantly reduced in those taking the olive leaf extract, there were also reductions in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides.
Sounds great, right?
While this shows a lot of promise, there are some caveats.
First of all, it must be noted that this study was funded in part (50%) by the manufacturers of the olive leaf extract used. That on its face does not mean the results are skewed.
It can be a good thing when nutritional supplement manufacturers set out to prove whether or not their supplement works. Many ride the coattails of folk wisdom or anecdotal claims with no scientific backup.
On the other hand, in most cases when you pay for something, you want to see the results you were looking for.
Hence why some are skeptical.
Although there is no readily apparent reason to be skeptical in this case, it must be noted.
Additionally, some claim that prolonged use of olive leaf extract, or high dose usage, can result in some unwanted side effects. Nausea, headaches, and liver/kidney issues are claimed by some, so caution is urged. Whether that caution is warranted or not requires more scientific studies to determine.
Of course, these concerns can, and should, be mitigated by consulting with your doctor prior to use. Especially if you are taking medication for high blood pressure already. Any changes induced by your diet may necessitate a change in your medication and you also need to make sure the nutritional supplements you take do not contraindicate your medication.
With all of that said, these results hold a great deal of promise for those looking to prevent disease naturally and avoid those prescription medications in the first place.
So talk to your doctor and see if olive leaf extract might be the right fit for you.
As always, thank you for being here and here’s to your health!
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