A randomised controlled clinical trial just published in the Journal of Medicinal Food (Wainstien et al., 2012) supports the use of olive leaf in type 2 diabetes.  The study involved 79 patients over 14 weeks and found that measures of glucose in the blood (HbA1c) and fasting insulin levels were significantly reduced, possibly involving a reduction in starch digestion and absorption. The significance of the use of olive leaf to regulate blood glucose is even greater when its use in hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia is considered, as individuals with type 2 diabetes often suffer from these conditions as part of ‘Metabolic Syndrome’ (combined cardiovascular disease and diabetes). OLive leaf has been shown in initial studies to reduce hypertension, possibly via blocking calcium channels (Gilani et al., 2005) and also reduces LDL / VLDL cholesterol (Bennani-Kabchi et al., 2000).



Bennani-Kabchi N, Fdhil H, Cherrah Y, El Bouayadi F, Kehel L, Marquie G. (2000)  [Therapeutic effect of Olea europea var. oleaster leaves on carbohydrate and lipid metabolism in obese and prediabetic sand rats (Psammomys obesus)]. Ann Pharm Fr. 58(4):271-7.


Gilani AH, Khan AU, Shah AJ, Connor J, Jabeen Q. (2005) Blood pressure lowering effect of olive is mediated through calcium channel blockade. Int J Food Sci Nutr. 56(8):613-20.


Wainstein J, Ganz T, Boaz M, Bar Dayan Y, Dolev E, Kerem Z, Madar Z. (2012) ‘Olive Leaf Extract as a Hypoglycemic Agent in Both Human Diabetic Subjects and in Rats’. J Med Food. [Epub ahead of print]