Since the times of Ancient Greece people used leaves of the Greek olive tree as a folk medicine, which was also brewed as a tea. Today it remains popular, as many believe it stimulates the immune system and can help to treat persistent conditions, such as chronic fatigue.
The olive tree, so closely anchored in Greek culture and life, first appeared in the Mediterranean region. And olive leaf tea has been a staple of ancient Greek civilizations since olives were first cultivated in the 15th century BC.
Olives used throughout antiquity
For thousands of years, Greeks extolled the beauty of the olive tree. Edible olives were being grown as a crop on Crete 3,500 years ago. In the time of Homer, between the 12th and 8th century BC, Greek olive oil was highly valued for anointing the body.
An overview of the benefits of drinking Greek olive leaf tea notes that olive leaf extract contains iron, zinc, selenium, chromium, vitamin C, beta-carotene and a wide range of amino acids
“There’s also clinical evidence of a blood-pressure-lowering effect, and preliminary studies have shown a blood-glucose-lowering effect, suggesting it may be used in future diabetes treatments,” according to healthyfoodguide.com.
Scientists have determined that the active compound in the Greek olive leaf is an antioxidant called oleuropein. Also found in Greek olive leaf tea are phyto-nutrients, providing higher levels of vitamin C than measured in green tea.
Another bonus provided by Greek olive leaf tea is that it is caffeine-free, making it a soothing choice for many as a drink before bed.
The Greek olive tree remains one of the oldest symbols found anywhere in the world, seen in ancient Greek art, poetry, fables, and religious texts. At various times, the Greek olive tree has been the symbol for peace, wisdom, fertility, prosperity, immortality and success.
And today, the Greek olive tree is known worldwide for the golden tea brewed from its leaves.