Salvia: 11 properties and benefits of this plant
The vegetal kingdom is wide, and in it we can find innumerable species of plants that form the rich range of living beings that populate the earth. And many of these plants have shown interesting properties in many different areas, some of which are consumable for us and even beneficial for our health. Benefits that may include the fact of nourishing ourselves, helping us to fight diseases or improve our health or even improve our appearance.
Sage is an example of this, being known and used since ancient Greece. There are many properties of sage , and that is why throughout this article we will focus on reviewing some of the most popular.
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What is this plant?
We call sage a well-known plant of aromatic type, which is part of the family of the lamiaceae (like oregano or basil) and that is widely available and extended by Mediterranean countries since ancient times.
It is a type of plant with great versatility in its use. For example it is used in a decorative way in beads or gardening, it is used as a condiment to different stews and cooked and is part of different incenses, perfumes and cosmetics due to its pleasant aroma as well as its effects on health.
So the applications that are given to this vegetable are very diverse, being able to go from the cosmetic industry to food use or even as a medicinal plant . With respect to the latter, it is in fact from where its name arises, which is derived from the terms salus and salvare (health and save respectively), always emphasizing its positive effects on the organism.
Properties of salvia
As you can guess from its constant use throughout history in a large number of areas, there are many properties that sage possesses. Next we will explain some of the most important ones, especially in what refers to its effect on our health .
Now, we must bear in mind that some of its properties may not be so positive: its use is not indicated in people with kidney problems, allergies, epilepsy or in pregnancy or lactation (has abortive properties) Your oil should not be ingested, as it can be toxic due to components such as terpene ketones, thuyone or camphor. It can also contribute to seizures and in high doses can be neurotoxic.
Among the positive properties, the following stand out.
1. It has antibiotic effects
One of the salvia's salutary properties comes from the fact that it strengthens the immune system, helping to eliminate bacteria and serving as an antiseptic in case of injuries and infections (reason why it is used as a component in certain mouthwashes or creams).
The fact that a significant proportion of tannins is found in sage contributes to soothe gastrointestinal problems , being able among other things to help to calm the intestinal motility and reduce the emission of excrements (for example in case of diarrhea) given its astringent effects.
3. Rich in antioxidants
The use as a condiment of sage has the advantage of having an interesting amount of antioxidants that hinder damage by oxidation of tissues , contributing to the healing, to the cutaneous health (also in its cosmetic use) and even helping to maintain the health and functioning of the brain.
4. Reduce blood glucose
Another of the properties of sage is to be hypoglycemic, generating a decrease in blood glucose levels. This makes its use useful for diabetics when it comes to lowering their glycemic level . Of course, as long as it is used only as an aid (never as a substitute for any medication).
5. Invigorates and stimulates the appetite
Sage has been useful for treat muscle weakness, lack of energy and asthenia . It also stimulates appetite and activity. However, people suffering from psychiatric disorders such as bipolar disorder should avoid its use in this sense, since it may favor the onset of symptoms.
6. Relieves gastrointestinal discomfort
It has been seen that tea made with salvia shows some utility when it comes to curbing the discomfort and discomfort of minor affections of the digestive tract, reducing pain and reducing gastrointestinal motility.
7. Relaxing effect
Although apparently contrary to the previous effect, another of the properties of sage is that infusion allows muscle relaxation. It has been observed that Helps fight insomnia, often used together with chamomile , and seems to help reduce the level of anxiety despite being in turn invigorating.
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8. It is anti-inflammatory
Sage is a plant with anti-inflammatory properties, reducing for example discomfort of gastric or digestive tract problems and contributing to the relaxation of stressed muscles .
9. Contributes to improve gynecological problems
One of its most traditional uses is linked to gynecological disorders and alterations, especially with regard to hot flashes and climacteric alterations . It also favors the menstrual cycle, contributing to the generation of estrogen. Likewise, the aforementioned anti-inflammatory effects also contribute to reducing the discomfort inherent to the cycle.
10. Strengthens hair and skin
Sage is a component that we often find in cosmetics such as creams and oils, favoring the health of hair and being useful in some types of dermatitis and when it comes to keeping the skin disinfected (as well as promoting healing).
11. Favors cognitive activity
Sage also seems to increase cognitive functionality and studies are even being carried out that seem to indicate that Alzheimer's patients show a slight improvement in activity level and mental functionality, for example in the case of memory.
- Drew, B. T., Gonzalez-Gallegos, J.G., Xiang, C.L., Kriebel, R., Drummond, C.P., Walker, J.B. and Sytsma, K.J., (2017). "Salvia united: The greatest good for the greatest number". Taxon, 66 (1), pp. 133-145.
- Sutton, John (2004). The Gardener's Guide to Growing Salvias. New York: Workman Publishing Company