Clinically, the olive leaf extract has been used for a relatively short time. Health professionals began using it early in 1995 when it first became available. Although we do not have long-term perspectives as yet, initial results are very positive. We see a very promising and unique herbal with multiple applications. It shows considerable therapeutic action against many common conditions. In short, it appears to be living up to its unique background and expectations.


From research and clinical experience to date, we can say that supplemental olive leaf extract may be beneficial in the treatment for conditions caused by, or associated with, a virus, retrovirus, bacterium, or protozoan. Among such conditions are influenza, the common cold, meningitis, Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV), encephalitis, herpes I and II, human herpes virus 6 and 7, shingles, HIV/ARC/AIDS, chronic fatigue, hepatitis B, pneumonia, tuberculosis, gonorrhea, malaria, dengue, bacteremia, severe diarrhea, blood poisoning, and dental, ear, urinary tract and surgical infections.

In our clinic, we use olive leaf extract for a variety of infectious and chronic conditions. We also believe that many people who lead stressful lives or who may be particularly susceptible to colds and viruses may benefit from long-term use of olive leaf extract as a preventive agent.

As I mentioned earlier, I am constantly surprised by unexpected benefits reported by patients. This indicates that we are perhaps just scratching the surface in our understanding of phytochemical benefits. Patients have told me about improved psoriasis, normalization of arrhythmias (heart beat irregularities), and less pain from hemorroids, toothaches and chronically achy joints.

I myself cured a chronic toenail fungual infection after starting on the supplement. It had not responded to the many other nutrients that I take.

One woman with bad allergies reported significant improvement and a level of energy she hadn't felt for years.

One elderly male with severe arrhythmia told me his condition had vastly improved in about eight days just from taking olive leaf extract alone. A woman with mild arrhythmia said her condition improved substantially while she took the supplement and then slowly became irregular again after she ran out.

We know from the oleuropein research done in the 1960s that the substance improves blood flood to the heart and acts to normalize arrhythmias. Currently, we are learning much about the cardiovascular benefits of the phytochemical compounds found in grape seeds, onions, kale, green beans, broccoli, and other vegetables. It will be interesting to see what benefits the particular phytochemicals in olive leaf extract produce for heart and arterial health.

Phil Selinsky, a naturopathic doctor at the Institute for Holistic Studies in Santa Barbara, and biochemist Arnold Takemoto, who has been developing patient nutritional programs on behalf of physicians in Arizona for 15 years, have found olive leaf extract to be an effective addition to their array of natural healing tools.

After using the supplement in dozens of cases for over a year, Selinsky is impressed with the benefits and looks forward to continued use and greater understanding about its most effective applications.

There is no doubt that olive leaf extract has real healing power. In a moment I will go into much greater detail on how it has helped patients.

It is important to keep in mind, however, that like any nutritional supplement it should not be considered a cure-all or panacea. In holistic practices such as mine, individual supplements are part of a comprehensive program that includes better diet, exercise, and stress control methods. That's how we maximize health and minimize symptoms.

In such a program, a patient may start with supplement X, Y and Z, get involved in an exercise program, and experience perhaps 50 percent relief for a given condition. That's a lot of relief but then we keep trying to improve the situation. We now add another supplement, let's say the olive leaf extract, and we get another degree of improvement, often quite large. In this manner, we continually tailor the program of an individual patient for the best results. And in this scheme of things, olive leaf extract is making a very positive contribution. It complements all the good things patients are doing.

There is always the possiblity that one ingredient, one supplement, can fill a large gap or particular need in the body and by itself lead to major improvement. We see that happen all the time. But usually it is all the elements in a nutritional program that work together -- like a team of horses pulling a wagon -- that gets the job done most effectively.

Biochemist Arnold Takemoto puts it this way: "Olive leaf extract is not a single magic-bullet. There are very few such things, especially in non-pharmaceutical medicine. In many cases it takes a whole lot more than just one ingredient to get over a particular condition. Yet I find it a very valuable addition against chronic fatigue syndrome and many other viral conditions, especially those that are more tenacious. It fills a hole that we haven't been able to fill before."

In the Townsend Letter article, Takemoto told Morton Walker that he has "yet to discover another herbal substance that accomplishes antimicrobially what this substance achieves."

Takemoto went on to say that Lisa Weinrib, M.D., one of the physicians he works with, treats many cases of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

She has noticed that patients with these problems exhibit much improvement from use of the extract, according to Takemoto. "It's the missing link that functions as an antiviral and antiretroviral agent by slowing down the organism's reproductive cycle. A slowdown...allows the patient's immune system to go on the attack."

Takemoto says olive leaf extract has helped patients eliminate stubborn viral infections they have had for years. One patient, who had suffered from shingles (herpes zoster) for nine years, experienced complete relief within two days of starting olive leaf extract and other supplements.

"In my approach," Takemoto says, "I target key antibody responses for specific viruses, stimulate the immune system, and with olive leaf extract attempt to inhibit the reproduction of the virus. It takes everything to get over some of these real chronic conditions."

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