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Each Autumn, I struggle to find ways to preserve my beautiful aromatic spring herb garden from the harsh cold nights and mornings.  Among the many herbs, Rosemary and thyme are my prize favorites.  Each evening I find myself cutting off stems of both for meal preparation.  Nevertheless, there is just something about the refreshing smell of fresh-cut Rosemary, an herb to remember.

Rosemary is a fragrant Mediterranean evergreen herb that dates back for centuries as a culinary staple in many Mediterranean foods.  Also, the use of the herb is among the many herbal medicinal treatments in traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic medicines. Rosemary offers the same health benefits today.  Rosemary’s medicinal properties are due to its rich source of phenolic phytochemical embedded deep within the herb.  In Rosemary, the “active compounds” are cineole, camphor, and alpha-pinene, which provides among many other functions throughout the body antioxidant and anti-inflammatory protection.

The herb’s antioxidant capability is effective in eliminating “free radicals,” which are the by-products of daily oxidation occurring within our bodies.  As the number of “free radicals” multiplies, damage may occur within the brain, leading to strokes and neurodegeneration.  Research shows that the active ingredient carnosic acid alleviates free radical injuries in the brain.  Thus, protecting the brain from strokes and neurodegeneration.

Also, another evidence-based study indicates these active compounds in Rosemary provides immunity protection in animal studies.  As a result of these findings, the antioxidant/anti-inflammatory nature of these chemicals may help boost and protect the immune system in humans. However, at this time, evidence-based research supports these positive results in animal experiments.

The Scientific community continuously investigates the composition of plants to identify natural sources to serve as new anticancer agents.   Rosemary extracts with its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties now include both antidiabetic and anticancer properties as well.   Several studies are reporting the positive effects of Rosemary-polyphenols exhibiting positive results as anticancer agents.  These polyphenols show promise in treating breast, prostate, colon, bladder, and liver cancers.

The universal reference to Rosemary is the herb for remembering.   The ability to enhance memory and concentration is one of the memorable roles of Rosemary.  As such, the use of Rosemary oil is one of the most popular aromatherapies of today.  Evidence-based study results reveal an occurrence of positive stimulations of  Rosemary oil inhalation on twenty participants.   The study shows increased blood pressure, heart rate,  respiratory rate, and mood changes in each volunteer.  Based on these findings, researchers can confirm there is a stimulatory effect of Rosemary oil on brain wave activity, autonomic nervous system, and mood states.  Participants reported having a fresher feeling and were more active after the inhalation of the oil.

These are just a few of the health benefits of Rosemary.  Please take note Rosemary is safe when eaten as a spice in food.  As always, I recommend reaping all health benefits through whole natural food.

Please always caution that herbs can trigger harmful side effects and interact with other herbs, supplements, or medications when taken in mega dosages such as supplements or pills.  For these reasons, you should take herbs with care, under the supervision of a health care provider.  Rosemary is safe as a spice in cooking.  However, when taken outside of recommendation from your physician in large quantities of rosemary leaves, teas, supplements, or other forms outside of spice in cooking, it can cause vomiting, spasms, coma, and some cases pulmonary edema.  Pregnant and nursing women should not take Rosemary as a supplement in any form.  People with high blood pressure, ulcer, Cron’s disease, or ulcerative colitis should not take Rosemary as well.   Rosemary Oil is toxic. NEVER be ingest – AVOID oral intake.

Rosemary is an herb to remember, handle with care.