Rosmarinus officinalis, commonly known as rosemary, is a woody, perennial herb with fragrant, evergreen, needle-like leaves and white, pink, purple, or blue flowers, native to the Mediterranean region.
The dark green leaves of rosemary are notable for their magnificent healthful advantages. Rosemary is one of the amazing herbs used as a traditional ‘super’ medicine for centuries. There is reference of rosemary in the play Hamlet as well.
Some of the most interesting and unique health benefits of rosemary include its great ability to boost memory, improve mood, reduce inflammation, relieve pain, protect the immune system, stimulate circulation, detoxify the body, protect the body from bacterial infections, prevent premature aging, and heal skin conditions.
Studies have shown that rosemary contains carnosic acid that fights against toxic elements that affect the freshness of human brain. Rosemary has natural compounds that provide protein to our brain, making it stronger to take decisions. It enhances the capabilities of our DNA and cells that have been damaged. The agents in rosemary help people to breakdown acetylcholine. This chemical encourages cells that are ‘responsible’ for our memory and interpersonal communications.
There was a study conducted on rosemary where groups of people were given rosemary essential oil. The results were remarkable: people had 60 to 75% chances of remembering things, compared with people who were not given rosemary essential oil!
Known health benefits of rosemary
1. Memory booster:
One of the earliest reported or documented uses of rosemary for health reasons was as a cognitive stimulant: IT WAS SAID THAT SNIFFING ROSEMARY CAN IMPROVE MEMORY BY 75% AND HELP INCREASE INTELLIGENCE AND FOCUS. While many of those claims are still being researched and studied, its effects on the brain do indicate an increase in memory retention, which is never a bad thing. Keeping your mind quick will help to keep it young. In that same vein, rosemary has been linked to stimulating cognitive activity in the elderly, as well as those suffering from more acute cognitive disorders, such as Alzheimer’s or dementia. This is an exciting alternative or supplement to more modern treatment for these as yet uncured conditions.
2. Stress reliever
The aroma of rosemary alone has been linked to improving mood, clearing the mind and thoughts, and relieving stress in those with chronic anxiety or stress hormone imbalances. When the plant is consumed or applied topically in some sort of salve of the leaves, it can have similar effects. Aromatherapy also uses rosemary essential oil for this purpose, but that concentration of active components isn’t necessary to have positive effects on stress and mood.
3. Immune system strengthener
The active components in rosemary are antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-carcinogenic in nature. This represents a three-pronged attack against many different diseases and pathogens that could threaten the immune system or damage the integrity of the body. Antioxidant compounds form a secondary line of defense behind the body’s own immune system, and rosemary contains a significant amount of those powerful compounds, including rosmarinic acid, caffeic acid, betulic acid, and carnosol.
4. Antibacterial agent: While the general immune boosting qualities of rosemary are impressive enough, it is specifically powerful against bacterial infections, particularly those in the stomach.
H. pylori bacteria is a common and very dangerous pathogen that can cause stomach ulcers, but rosemary has been shown to prevent its growth when consumed. Similarly, rosemary is linked to preventing Staph infections, which kill thousands of people almost every year.
5. Stomach calmer:
Rosemary has traditionally been used by dozens of cultures as a natural remedy for upset stomachs, constipation, bloating, diarrhea, and everything in between. Its anti-inflammatory and stimulant effects are largely the cause of these effects, so adding rosemary to your weekly diet can quickly help you regulate your bowel movements and your gastrointestinal tract.
6. Breath freshener:
As a natural antibacterial agent, rosemary works as a wonderful breath freshener that also improves your oral health. Steep rosemary leaves in a glass of hot water and then gargle or swish the water in your mouth to eliminate bacteria and give you naturally fresh and clean breath all night!
7. Blood flow stimulator:
Rosemary acts as a stimulant for the body and boosts the production of red blood cells and blood flow. This helps to oxygenate vital organ systems and areas of the body, ensuring that the metabolic activities in those areas are running smoothly, in addition to stimulating the movement of nutrients to cells that require repair.
8. Pain reliever:
As an analgesic substance, rosemary has been topically applied in a paste or salve for hundreds of years to the affected area of the pain. When consumed orally, rosemary acts as a pain reliever for harder to reach spots, such as headaches and pain from a condition. In fact, one of the most popular uses of rosemary is for the treatment of migraines. Applying a decoction to the temples, or simply smelling the aroma of rosemary has been linked to reducing the severity of migraine symptoms.