Well, I just got back from the warm and sunny climate in Anaheim, California for a tradeshow. (No, I wasn't affected by the tsunami that apparently hit the West Coast following the earthquake in Japan.) It was an extremely busy show though...the busiest I've ever seen that event, which happens to be the largest natural products expo in the world.
So, I found out about this new study while I was in California, and just getting to discussing it now. This study adds to the growing body of evidence supporting olive leaf extract (OLE) for various health benefits...this time for blood pressure.
This study was a fairly well-designed study that used Captopril (a prescription drug) as the control group. After 8 weeks, both groups (OLE and Captopril) had significantly lower blood pressure, but the decrease was not significantly different between the groups. Translation: OLE lowers blood pressure as much as the prescription drug, Captopril.
The benefit of OLE was that it also decreased triglyceride levels, while Captopril had no effect (high triglycerides are also a risk factor for cardiovascular disease).
I would keep an eye on this botanical ingredient -- there seems to be quite a bit of buzz.
So if you've read the discussion on dark chocolate I wrote last week, I think you're starting to see how those with hypertension have natural options they can explore first. Blood pressure is a difficult condition to treat (based on my clinical experience), but there are many things that can help, including magnesium, CoQ10/ubiquinol, grape seed extracts, etc. I would try all these first, and only look to synthetic drugs as a last resort.
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Source: Susalit et al. 2011
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