Recently, team of scientists has discovered that sniffing rosemary can increase the memory by 75%. Isn’t that incredible?
Rosemary multi-purpose medicinal herb that offers variety of health benefits and that is the reason why it was used since ancient times.
Interesting fact from the history is that ancient Greeks wore rosemary springs in the hair while studying for their exams.
Moreover, this amazing herb has been used for boosting the long-term memory and alertness for millennia. In “Hamlet”, famous Shakespeare mentions the incredible benefits of rosemary.
Back in 2003, a study conducted at the Northumbria University, Newcastle discovered that smelling rosemary is related to “an enhancement of performance for overall quality of memory and secondary memory factors”.
About 10 years later, the experts scientifically explained the cognitive-boosting abilities of this perennial herb with remarkable fragrant. Namely, during the research, scientists followed 20 people while they were performing subtraction exercises and visual information processing tasks and other tests. Experts have assessed the mood of the participants before and after the exposure to specific rosemary scent and took blood samples, as well.
This study included 66 people, who were randomly assigned to either the rosemary-scented room or another room without any scent. The findings were really amazing: it was discovered that rosemary smell substantially had increased memory in the participants.
To be more precise, people in the rosemary-scented room performed up to 60-75% better on remembering events to completing tasks. Moreover, these individuals recalled things much better that the other participants.
In addition to that, blood samples showed that the blood of the participants exposed to the rosemary-scented room had detectable levels of 1,8-cineole. And cineole is an active compound in rosemary. Experts explain that this compound was absorbed into their bloodstream, and patients with higher levels, showed better results.
The lead researcher, Dr. Mark Moss, stated:
“This compound is present in rosemary but has not previously been demonstrated to be absorbed into blood plasma in humans.
It is our view that the aroma, therefore, acts like a therapeutic drug, rather than any effects being a result of the more sensory properties of the aroma. The chemicals are also believed to have directly stimulated the olfactory nerve in the nose, which could have effects on brain functioning.”
Rosemary has carnosic acid and rosmarinic acid content, which have the ability to fight free radical damage, but in same time prevent beta-amyloid-induced neurodegeneration in the hippocampus, also inhibit the growth of cancer cells and prevent Alzheimer’s. In other words, it was proved that rosemary dramatically supports brain health.
Another researcher, Jemma McCready, said:
“We deliberately set them a lot of tasks, so it’s possible that people who multi-task could function better after sniffing rosemary oil. And, there was no link between the participants’ mood and memory. This suggests performance is not influenced as a consequence of changes in alertness or arousal.”
Dr. Mark Moss is very optimistic and excited about the real-life implications of this study. He said:
“We are focused on prospective memory, which involves the ability to remember events that will occur in the future and to remember to complete tasks at particular times.
This is critical for everyday functioning, for example when someone needs to remember to post a birthday card or to take medication at a particular time.
Plants are very complex organisms and contain many different active compounds and these vary in concentration from plant to plant and even within the same plant over the course of a day.
The accumulation of knowledge regarding possible impacts of plant aromas and extracts could potentially lead to an identification of the best combination to promote specific effects.”
The director of the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago, Dr. Alan Hirsch, participated in this research as part of this expert team. He agrees and claims that the findings of this study open another incredible perspective for exploring the effects of this magnificent herb.
How to Use Rosemary
In order to enjoy the benefits of the rosemary, experts suggest to diffuse several drops of high-quality organic essential oil, using a diffuser.
Another suggestion is to place rosemary plant on your desk in the office or somewhere in your house.
You can keep your brain sharp all the time, by mixing drop of rosemary oil in a teaspoon of coconut oil and carry it in some small cosmetic tin in your bag. Simply rub a bit on the wrists and enjoy all its benefits.