7 reasons to add rosemary to your life

Rosemary is understandably one of the most popular herbs in the world. When you brush the branches of a rosemary bush, the fragrant aromas they give off intoxicate the senses. A desirable shrub, rosemary is found in pots and backyard green spaces all over the world, thanks to its pleasant appearance and sturdy growth. Cooking and lifestyle enthusiasts prefer rosemary for the delicate flavor and fragrance it imparts when cooked and infused in oils.

In addition to being a useful addition to the kitchen and bathroom, this Mediterranean evergreen is a medicinal powerhouse, credited with an impressive list of health benefits. Rosemary is rich in phytochemicals, bioactive plant compounds with beneficial health properties that are also responsible for rosemary’s pleasant aroma.

7 reasons to love rosemary

Rosmarinus officinalis L., or rosemary, was used in the traditional pharmacopoeia to relieve ailments such as headaches, stomachaches, rheumatic and menstrual pains, and to dispel fatigue. Rosemary was believed to have neuroprotective properties and was used to treat spasms and epilepsy, relieve nervousness and depression, and improve memory.

Science has spoken out on rosemary, supporting its usefulness as a traditional medicine due to its significant antioxidant, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties, among other documented benefits. Rosemary’s toning properties were validated in a comprehensive meta-analysis that found rosemary to be “a valuable source” for healing inflammation, relieving pain, improving memory and relieving anxiety.

Let’s unravel the science surrounding rosemary as an aid in disease prevention and review the impressive list of pharmacological actions credited to this highly favored herb.

1. Anti-inflammatory

A 2022 review studied the anti-inflammatory effect of whole rosemary in both ground and distilled form. The mice were given a daily dose of rosemary powder or extract for 21 days to treat inflammatory lesions including swollen limbs, acute liver injury and asthma. Both forms of rosemary treatment showed diverse anti-inflammatory activities on various biomarkers during and after the treatment period.

You may not need to ingest rosemary to benefit from these anti-inflammatory properties. Diffused rosemary essential oil has been shown to be a potentially useful adjunct to anti-inflammatory drug treatment. A topical application of rosemary leaf extract has also been shown to possess anti-inflammatory potency similar to that of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug indomethacin.

2. Antioxidant

When you consume an antioxidant substance, the boost to your body helps strengthen cells against oxidative damage. According to research, rosmarinic acid and carnosic acid are the phytoactive phenolic compounds in rosemary that provide the most anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits to your body. In a 2015 paper, researchers evaluated the protective effect of rosmarinic acid for systemic inflammation and found that it caused a substantial reduction in inflammation, evidence of potent antioxidant effects.

A rosemary extract containing high concentrations of carnosic acid compounds was tested in vitro for antiproliferative effects against human prostate cancer cells. The results showed that the rosemary extract promoted antioxidant activity and reduced the viability of cancer cells in a concentration-dependent manner. Researchers have found that rosemary plants are useful in conceptualizing new drugs to effectively fight cancer and free radical-mediated diseases.

3. Analgesic

Analgesic substances act to relieve pain, which is why they are indispensable in the modern medicine cabinet. But drug-based pain relievers can be toxic to the liver and can carry dangerous addiction risks. Herbal pain relievers are often non-toxic, non-habit forming alternatives that can safely relieve pain; some have even been proven to work just as well as their clinical counterparts.

A 2007 study investigated the analgesic properties of rosemary extract using three different experimental models of pain. Response curves were calculated to determine the optimal dose and time to analgesic effects. Pain relief was observed in all pain models, with effects similar to those produced by tramadol, a narcotic with a high risk of dependence and dependence.

A later study of the analgesic properties of rosemary identified 11 chemical compounds that may contribute to the analgesic properties of rosemary. The researchers determined that rosemary’s ability to relieve pain involves the serotonergic system, a transmitter system in the brain, including endogenous opioids.

4. Anxiety relief

An estimated 264 million people worldwide suffer from anxiety. Aromatherapy is a simple and effective way to de-stress, and there is no better herb to improve your mood than distilled rosemary leaf extract.

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In a recent neurological study, researchers tested the effects of rosemary and lavender essential oils on alertness and mood. Forty adults were tested after three-minute aromatherapy sessions for the effects of each oil on brainwave activity, alertness, and self-reported mood. True to its traditional reputation, rosemary essential oil has been found to be an effective help for anxiety.

Lavender’s usefulness as a relaxant has also been validated. Participants in the lavender test group showed increased beta brain waves, indicating drowsiness, and reported improved mood and felt more relaxed. The rosemary group demonstrated increased alertness through decreased frontal alpha and beta brain waves and reported less anxiety and felt more relaxed and alert.

Adding a few drops of rosemary essential oil to a diffuser can be a simple way to soothe stressed nerves during the day, and placing a lavender-scented sachet inside your pillowcase can provide a calming and relaxing effect to help you relax. sleep at night.

5. Improved cognition

If you’re prone to “senior moments,” you’re not alone: ​​1 in 9 American adults over 45 have reported symptoms of memory loss. Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is an age-related condition that is becoming more common, but it can be improved with the support of brain-boosting supplements like rosemary.

A 2022 meta-analysis of the cognition-enhancing effects of rosemary reviewed 22 animal studies to determine qualitative and quantitative effects. Overall, rosemary improved cognitive outcomes in normal and cognitively impaired animals, with strong results across species, extract types, treatment duration, and memory type. The researchers acknowledged that rosemary’s reputation as “the herb of remembrance” is not hearsay.

6. Neuroprotective

When cognitive decline is not reduced, it can lead to dementia, a general diagnosis of impaired ability to think, remember and make normal, day-to-day decisions. An estimated 14 million people could suffer from dementia by the year 2060. Rosemary supplementation can help stave off the cognitive decline that can lead to this devastating diagnosis.

Rosemary was tested in a placebo-controlled study of a combined herbal extract to improve memory in healthy seniors. The extract combined three traditional medicinal herbs, rosemary, sage and lemon balm. The 44 study participants were blinded and randomly assigned to take either the herbal extract or the placebo for a single two-week period. Immediate and delayed word recall was used to assess memory after taking the active extract or placebo every day.

The results showed that, in just two weeks, the herb extract containing rosemary was significantly more effective than placebo in improving memory in people under 63 years of age, with no adverse effects. The researchers called for further investigation of this “simple and cost-effective” protocol for its potential as an adjunctive treatment for patients with Alzheimer’s disease and the general elderly population.

7. Antidepressant

Depression is a natural state of mind that everyone experiences at some point in their life. But what do you do when a depressed mood becomes more than a passing phase and you are averse to long-term and potentially addictive drug therapy? Why not try adding more rosemary to your life?

Massage is a holistic healing modality with known therapeutic benefits. By combining the powerful effects of aromatherapy with the healing touch, you get a clinically proven, mood-enhancing dual boost. A 2022 study of seniors living in a nursing facility found that a 20-minute aromatherapy massage using oil infused with extracts of lavender, chamomile, and rosemary significantly reduced anxiety and depression.

Another easy way to improve your mood is as simple as having a daily cup of rosemary tea. A 2021 study found that healthy subjects ages 20 to 50 who consumed a 5-gram infusion of rosemary tea daily for 10 days showed significantly improved blood plasma biomarkers for anxiety and depression. Research results highlighted rosemary’s promise as an anti-anxiety and antidepressant treatment, with rosemary being the most reliable biomarker for depression.

By Sayer Ji. Article in English

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