A new study finds a reduction in bad cholesterol (LDL cholesterol) equal to that found when taking the cholesterol lowering medication Atorvastatin, when supplemental olive leaf extracts were added daily.
This animal study examined the effects of a 50 or 100 mg/kg/day daily dose of olive leaf extract in comparison to a 20 mg/kg/day dose of Atorvastatin or no intervention at all. Rats were given one of the above protocols. The study lasted eight weeks. Results showed a reduction of the atherogenic index (the ratio of non HDL cholesterol to HDL cholesterol)with final values of between 2.10 and 3.29 for the rats given either dosage of olive leaf extract. The group given the Atorvastatin showed an atherogenic index of2.6. The rats that were given no intervention experienced an increase in the artherogenic index.
The benefits of the olive leaf extract were associated with the oleuropein content. This phytonutrient is the same one found in olive foods like olive oil and olives, a major component of the Mediterranean diet and most likely responsible for the beneficial effects seen in this study. Typically the oleuropein which has a “biting taste” is removed from olives and other olive foods.
Further studies are needed.
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