Sage by Marty Zelenko

SAGE

Sage Flower and Leaf (illustration)
Sage Flower and Leaf (illustration)


Basic Info

Sage, commonly known as black sage, broad-leafed sage, common sage, as well as its latin names, Salvia officinalis, and Salvia lavandulaefolia is a very useful herb. Sage is commonly used to treat mouth and throat inflammation, and is also used as a supplement to boost memory or mood. Sage was often used in the ancient world as well. Sage was used in ancient Egypt as a fertility drug, as well as ancient Greece as a disinfectant for wounds and sores. Today, sage is available as dried leaves, essential oils, and liquid extracts.(http://nccam.nih.gov/health/sage/#top) Sage like other herbs is used as a spice in cooking of various different cultures.
green_sage_lrg.jpg
Salvia Officinalis (Common Sage )


Geographic Origin

Native to the Mediterranean region, and brought to North America in the 17th Century, Sage can be considered an evergreen shrub. Sage plants can grow up to three feet, and flourishes in temperate regions.

(http://www.herbalist.com/wiki.details/79/category/11/start/0/)

Sage is native to the Mediterranean Region
Sage is native to the Mediterranean Region

Classification

  • Sage is a member of the Salvia genus
  • Sage belongs to the Lamiaceae family, which is the mint family of flowering plants that has more then 7,000 species and is used for medical purposes, flavor, and fragrance. (http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/328710/Lamiaceae)

  • Other members of the Lamiaceae family are common herbs such as rosemary, basil, and mint.

Species of Sage

  • Salvia apina (white sage)
  • Salvia divinorum (diviners sage)
  • Salvia elegans (pineapple Sage)
  • Salvia fruticosa (greek sage)
  • Salvia microphylla (baby sage)
  • Salvia officinalis (common sage)
  • Salvia splendens (scarlet sage)
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvia)

Medical Uses of Sage

Sage is considered to be a remedy for numerous ailments and illnesses that can effect daily life. Sage is said to induce sleep through its effects on the central nervous system. Sage, also known for its drying qualities is said to help dry up mammary glands in females, as well as treat diarrhea. Highly effective in its oil state, essential sage oils are used to various conditions of the mouth such as sore throat, tonsillitis, cold sores, and throat infection among others.(http://www.herbalist.com/wiki.details/79/category/11/start/0/)

Flowering Sage Plant
Flowering Sage Plant



Effectiveness of Sage Remedies

Although widely considered a remedy for sore throats, there has been little to no studies done on the actually effect that Sage has on ailing throats, therefore providing little scientific proof to back these claims. Sage however has been found to improve mood and memory through two scientific tests involving this herb. Other studies have shown that sage can improve cognitive functions in older adults with moderate Alzheimer's Disease. (http://nccam.nih.gov/health/sage/#top)





Side Effects of Sage

Many species of sage contain a chemical called thujone, thujone is found in high concentrations in Salvia Officinalis. This chemical can be considered a cause of seizures, liver damage, nervous system damage,and miscarriage. Use of sage is also linked to high blood pressure and lowered blood sugar in diabetics. (http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-504-SAGE.aspx?activeIngredientId=504&activeIngredientName=SAGE)



Informational Video on Sage

References

  1. "Sage [NCCAM Herbs at a Glance]." National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine [NCCAM] - Nccam.nih.gov Home Page. Web. 11 Jan. 2012. <http://nccam.nih.gov/health/sage/>.

  2. "Salvia." Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 11 Jan. 2012. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvia>.
  3. "Lamiaceae (plant Family) -- Britannica Online Encyclopedia." Encyclopedia - Britannica Online Encyclopedia. Web. 11 Jan. 2012. <http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/328710/Lamiaceae>.
  4. Herbalist. Web. 10 Jan. 2012. <http://www.herbalist.com/wiki.details/79/category/11/start/0>.

  5. "Uses, Side Effects, Interactions and Warnings - WebMD." WebMD - Better Information. Better Health. Web. 11 Jan. 2012. <http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-504-SAGE.aspx?activeIngredientId=504>.