Olive leaf tea is one type of tea that has been used as far back as ancient times. The olive tree (Olea europaea) is an evergreen which means unlike other trees, olive trees retain their leaves during winter, and all you have to do is pick some of the freshest, cleanest leaves and boil them in water to make olive leaf tea, which is very beneficial for the body.
Olive leaves are silvery-green in color and oblong-shaped. It can grow from 4 to 10 centimeters in length and up to 3 centimeters in width. Olive leaf tea tastes like green tea, but if you chew a fresh olive leaf, you will notice that it has a bitter, astringent taste. Combine olive leaf tea with herbs and spices that have a strong, sweet note to contrast the bitterness of olive leaves if you want a more complex flavor for your drink. Peppermint and ginger are excellent choices.
Olive Leaf Tea Trivia
- Ancient Egyptians have high regard for olive leaves because they believe these leaves contain heavenly powers that can be used for healing.
- The elongated leaves of the olive tree are leathery and sharp-pointed. Intimidating and far from what you’d relate to food, but we were able to discover the goodness of olive leaf tea and we never stopped drinking it since then.
- Do not confuse olive leaf tea with olive leaf extract.
Olive Leaf Tea Buying Guide
You can buy olive leaf tea at the coffee/tea aisle of the supermarket or grocery stores. You can also buy olive leaf tea in specialty stores. You can also purchase these online.
When buying olive leaf tea, always check the packaging for any signs of tampering or damage. A broken safety seal, holes in the packaging, discoloration, even bad odor are signs that something is wrong with the item you are trying to purchase and it is best to report this to the store attendant.
Olive Leaf Tea Production & Farming in Texas
Olive leaf tea is made from dried olive leaves. These leaves undergo commercial production processes to make olive leaf tea bags sold in the market.
People would pick olive leaves, clean them, dry them, and steep them in boiling water to make tea. Commercial production of olive leaf tea includes steaming, rolling of leaves, drying, and cutting of harvested olive leaves before the packaging process commences.
Olive leaves used in the production of olive leaf tea made here in Texas are harvested from olive orchards found in many areas of Texas. The Lone Star State has a thriving olive leaf tea industry. Many brands of olive leaf tea sold in Texas are Texas-based companies, like the veteran-owned company Oli Tea Company. Oli Tea, a Seguin-based artisan herbal tea company, sources olive leaves from the owner’s olive orchard and small to medium central Texas based olive orchards. Processing, blending and packaging occurs at the Seguin based tea manufacturing facility thereby reducing carbon footprint and logistical processes.
Special Leaf, a San Antonio-based artisan tea company, sources olive leaves from Texas Hill Country Olive Company in Dripping Springs.
Pesticides, Additives, and Chemicals:
Oleuropein is a natural pesticide. Still, olive trees are attacked and under threat from a lot of different kinds of pests and diseases that require the use of pesticides, fungicides, and other chemicals.
- Olive moth – Use pesticides like deltamethrin, fenthion, and formothion.
- Olive fruit fly – Use bait sprays that contain the insecticide spinosad.
- Black scale – Use systemic insecticides like acephate, imidacloprid, and dinotefuran.
- Olive tree borer – Use contact insecticides to prevent infestation. Pyrethroids including bifenthrin and permethrin are effective against borers.
- Weevil beetle – To prevent larvae infestations, it is advisable to use juvenile parasitic nematodes. A serious infestation of weevils requires the use of pyrethrum, rotenone, or sabadilla.
- Olive leaf moth – Use pyrethroid permethrin.
- Violet scale – Any broadleaf killer containing 2,4-D, or Dicamba will be effective in killing violet scale.
Olive leaf tea is common and popular among those living in the Mediterranean. This drink is very popular in Greece, where olives are an important part of Greek culture and way of life. Mass production of olive leaf tea as a commercial item is the reason why you can buy this in stores in many countries around the world like Germany, the US, Japan, Hungary, and Australia.
Olive leaf tea is sold either as loose leaf or in a teabag. Loose-leaf olive tea is sold in a resealable pouch. Olive leaf tea bags are sold in a box.
Enjoying Olive Leaf Tea
Olive leaf tea is an excellent choice because this is a beneficial drink. It has antioxidants including Oleuropein and Hydroxytyrosol. It also has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiviral, and immune-stimulating properties. Your body gets vitamin C, iron, zinc, selenium, chromium, beta-carotene, and amino acids. Olive leaf tea helps boost the body’s immunity and it can also help strengthen the body to fight infection.
Because it can help in reducing the risk of heart disease, this is a great drink for people with a family history of heart problems because this drink can help lower high blood cholesterol and control blood pressure. This is also good for people with anemia and red blood cell disorders. For those with a family history of diabetes, olive leaf tea is good for people avoiding or managing diabetes because this drink can help reduce blood glucose in the body. For those looking for more beverage options while slimming down, drink olive leaf tea because this helps in weight loss.
Drink olive leaf tea and think long-term: this beverage can help the body fight neurological diseases among the elderly like Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and Parkinson’s disease. Olive leaf tea can also help minimize the risks of cancer, so that’s another good thing to consider if you are thinking of adding this drink to your regular diet.
You can also appreciate the little things it brings to the table. Can’t drink tea because you can’t have caffeine? Don’t worry. Olive leaf tea has no caffeine.
When drinking olive leaf tea, always remember that just like everything else, moderation is the key. One to two cups a day is enough. Drinking too much will cause headaches and muscle discomfort.
Before you start drinking olive leaf tea, it is highly recommended that you talk to your physician first, especially if you are taking medication or have been subjected to a strict diet for health reasons.
Store olive leaf tea in a cabinet or the pantry. Always keep the storage closed. Make sure it is protected from contaminants like dirt. Keep it away from direct sunlight. Make sure it is safe from animals or pests. Keep it in a dry place. There is no need to refrigerate olive leaf tea.
Make iced milk honey olive leaf tea at home
Sipping a cup of hot olive leaf tea is very relaxing especially on a cold day. But what about during summer when the weather is hot and humid and it is not a good idea to drink a warm beverage? Have your tea iced, and add milk and honey too for a sweet, refreshing olive leaf tea drink.
Yield: This recipe makes 1 glass
- 2 olive leaf tea bags
- 1 tablespoon honey
Step 1. Steep olive leaf tea bags in hot water for 3 to 5 minutes.
Step 2. Remove the tea bags and add honey. Let the tea cool down.
Step 3. Put ice on a tall glass enough to cover 3/4 of the glass.
Step 4. Pour the cold honey-sweetened olive leaf tea.
Step 5. Pour milk. How much milk depends on how strong or sublime you want the olive leaf tea to taste in this drink.
Step 6. Stir and enjoy!