The Green House
by Margaret Durst: Your
Lifestyle = Your Health
is one of my favorite herbs for this time of year. I use olive leaf
for immune enhancement so that I do not get the flu. However, olive
leaf is more than just a great anti-viral.
Olives in some
form have been used throughout history. Olives and olive oil are
referenced throughout the Bible. Olive leaf is the first herb mentioned
after the flood. Olive oil was used in ancient times as a special
anointing oil for priests and kings. The ancient Egyptians used
an olive leaf extract to mummify their kings. Throughout the ages,
teas made from olive leaf have been a popular folk remedy, particularly
for combating fevers.
Tea from olive
leaf is extremely bitter, and it is the bitter principle that is
thought to have healing properties. Scientists have now isolated
the bitter phytochemicals contained in the tree and leaves and have
done significant research on these compounds. It is thought that
these bitter compounds enable the olive tree to live for thousands
of years by protecting the tree against insects and harmful microorganisms.
For the immune
system, olive leaf inhibits many types of harmful viruses, bacteria,
and fungus. Olive leaf has been used for Lyme disease, malaria,
meningitis, Epstein-Barr, Herpes, HIV, shingles, the common cold
For the digestive
system, olive leaf helps alleviate symptoms caused by harmful microorganisms
such as diarrhea and peptic ulcers.
may also help alleviate certain chronic immune system disorders
that may be caused by certain viruses or bacteria. These include
chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and rheumatoid arthritis.
is helpful when dealing with parasitic and fungal conditions such
as chronic yeast and fingernail and toenail fungus.
is also considered a cardiovascular herb. It is a potent antioxidant
that may help prevent atherosclerosis by inhibiting oxidation of
LDL cholesterol. Olive leaf increases blood circulation to the heart
and improves the pumping action of the heart. Olive leaf also lowers
blood pressure. I have always suspected that the real reason olive
leaf works in this capacity is that it cleans the blood of yeast
and fungus both of these make the blood thicker and also
The best form
of olive leaf has the highest content of oleuropein which is considered
to be the active constituent. Many of the less expensive
brands contain 10 percent or less oleuropein. The best supplements
contain a minimum of 18 percent oleuropein. Remember this when shopping
because the higher oleuropein content tends to increase price and
with olive leaf, you really get what you pay for.
season, I recommend taking 500 mg. of high oleuropein content olive
leaf daily. This can be doubled or tripled during acute periods
of exposure to colds and flu.
March 1, 2011
Durst owns The
Green House, a vitamin, herb and health food store in Mason,
© 2011 Margaret
Best of Margaret Durst