Did you know that researchers recently discovered that an all-natural extract can lower your blood pressure as well as key Big Pharma drugs…in just eight weeks!?
Don’t feel bad if you haven’t heard about this breakthrough. Big Pharma pays big bucks to make sure small studies like this one never see the light of day. They’d rather keep you in the dark to pad their own pockets.
In fact, Big Pharma spends far more money on marketing than it does on research. One recent report found that drugs companies shell out $57 billion a year on promotion. But it spends almost half that research and development.
So you tell me. What’s more important to Big Pharma: Keeping you healthy or keeping your attention?
Big Pharma is so obsessed about promotion because if people knew about this natural competitor, they wouldn’t need to rely on manufactured solutions. Just consider this small (but impressive) study recently published that fell through the mainstream cracks…
Natural plant extract lowers BP as well as ACE inhibitor
ACE (angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibitors are among the most widely used drugs in the world. They lower your blood pressure by blocking a hormone called angiotensin II. This hormone causes your blood vessels to constrict, so your heart must work overtime to pump blood around your body.
By blocking this hormone, ACE inhibitors allow your blood vessels to relax and reopen. As a result, your blood pressure comes down and your heart gets a break.
Now here’s where things get interesting…
Researchers recently found that olive leaf extract (OLE) could lower blood pressure as well as one popular ACE inhibitor!
For the study, they recruited patients with stage-1 high blood pressure. They divided the patients into two groups. One group took 500 mg of OLE twice daily for eight weeks. The second group received 12.5 mg of the ACE inhibitor Captopril twice daily for eight weeks.
At the end of the trial, researchers found that both groups lowered their blood pressure. On average, the OLE group went from 149/94 to 138/89. The ACE inhibitor group went from 148/94 to 135/87.
There was one major difference, however, between the two groups. The olive leaf group lowered their LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides. The ACE inhibitor group did not see these improvements. (To do that, they’d have to pop another drug. Yes, just think of the gains for Big Pharma!)
One compound does double duty
The researchers believe a compound called oleuropein holds the key to OLE’s success. They believe oleuropein helps relax your blood vessels and sweep away bad cholesterol.
Plus, this isn’t the first time researchers used OLE to lower high blood pressure…
Back in 2008, researchers studied identical twins with borderline high blood pressure. One twin received 500 mg of OLE twice a day for eight weeks. The other twin received “lifestyle advice.”
After just eight weeks, the OLE group lowered their BP from 137/80 to 126/76. They also saw their LDL (bad) cholesterol fall. The “lifestyle advice” group, on the other hand, only slightly improved their cholesterol scores. Their BP scores stayed the same.
Proceed with caution…
If I had to choose, I’d take OLE over an ACE inhibitor any day of the week (and twice on Sundays!). Just look at the side effects for ACE inhibitors and you’ll probably see it my way too.
(The most common side effect for Captopril is a chronic, dry cough. But people who take this drug can also suffer from kidney failure as well as head, neck, and intestinal angioedema. This type of swelling is similar to hives, except it occurs beneath the skin and can be life threatening if it affects your airway. Captopril is also associated with a blood disorder called neutropenia. With this disorder, your white blood cell count drops to abnormally low levels. This is not good because white blood cells protect you against infection and pathogens. Lastly, pregnant women should not take Captopril. It raises the risk of your child developing “major” congenital malformations.)
I do have some concerns about taking OLE continuously. You see…
Olive leaf extract is well-known in alternative medicine. We use it to fight colds and infections. But I don’t ever use it continuously, as it can almost work too well. In fact, over time, OLE can wipe out your body’s supply of good bacteria…especially in your gut.
Now, maybe if you take plenty of probiotics along with the OLE you’ll sidestep the problem. But these are untested waters, and I’ll keep you posted about any further studies. Before trying OLE for high blood pressure, I’d seek the advice of a professional.
Here is a list web sites where you can search for a natural health practitioner in your area:
- The American Holistic Medical Association (AHMA)
- The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP)
- Orthomolecular Medicine
- The American College for Advancement in Medicine
Lastly, go back and read the Guide to Good Health from last August. In this article, you’ll learn about my five-step plan to lower your blood pressure without drugs.
Dr. Allan Spreen
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