Rosemary

(rosmarinus officinalis)
Rosemary is a small, fragrant evergreen shrub. The rosemary plant originated in the countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. The leaf is used in herbal medicine, the extracted oil is used in aromatherapy.

Throughout history, rosemary was used to preserve meats. It has long played a role in European herbalism and popular folklore. Sprigs of rosemary were considered a love charm, a sign of remembrance, and a way to ward off the plague. Rosemary was used by herbalists as a tonic for the elderly and to help with indigestion. In ancient China, rosemary was used for headaches and topically for baldness.

What it does

Rosemary contains a variety of compounds which include flavanoid, diterpenes, volatile oil and phenolic acis. In particular, rosmarinic acid is anti-oxidant and a free radical scavenger. The volatile oils present in rosemary have soothing properties on digestion and relax the smooth muscles of the digestive tract. The oil is anti-microbial and anti-spasmodic. Rosemary is said to be antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, anti-depressant, diuretic, sedative, mild astringent, analgesic, brain tonifying and stimulating to the circulation.

Potential Uses

Detox Indigestion Reducing perspiration when feverish
Anxiety IBS Viral infections
Atherosclerosis Candida Chronic fatigue syndrome
Depression Heartburn Migraines

Other information

Rosemary tea can be made using the fresh or dried herb and drunk up to 3 times daily.

It is often added to lamb and pork in cooking to enhance flavour and help break down fats and aid digestion.

The aromatherapy oil can be diluted in a carrier oil and used to massage the scalp and stimulate circulation and treat head lice.

Cautions

Do not use in pregnancy, although it is considered safe to use when breastfeeding.

Generally, there are no side effects or contra-indications from using rosemary.

At the time of writing there were no well known negative drug interactions with rosemary.

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