Sage – A Medicinal Herb
All sages are not alike. Some are for landscaping, and some have medicinal values in addition to other uses. In this article I am covering the garden sage (salvia officinalis), which has been associated with longevity and strength over the centuries. It has been considered one of the most important medicinal herbs for thousands of years, and its healing properties have been highly esteemed.
It has an astringent and a tonic action, which stimulates the digestive system. Salvia officinalis has been used to cool fevers and is considered a blood purifier. It also has a disinfectant action. It has antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Sage has also been considered an herb of the brain and the memory.
An infusion of the leaves is very relaxing. It aids in easing certain types of headaches, and nervous tension. A strong infusion is an effective antiseptic gargle and mouthwash for sore throats and mouth ulcers. It is also said to cleanse and strengthen bleeding gums.
In addition to being a medicinal herb, it is a very popular culinary herb and has been used to flavor most meats as it helps to digest fatty substances as well as improving the flavor of all types of meats. It is also popular in various cheese recipes.
Sage tea has been one of the most popular teas in most of the European countries. At one time it was even used for bartering. One recipe for sage tea is one cup of boiling water over two teaspoons of dried sage leaves or four teaspoons of fresh leaves. You may want to alter the amount of sage depending on your personal taste. Let it steep for approximately 5 minutes. A sage tea that is considered to be a blood purifier is two teaspoons of dried sage or four teaspoons of fresh sage leaves to one quart of water. Bring the water to a simmer and pour over the sage. Let it steep for a few minutes, then add one teaspoon of fresh lemon juice and honey to taste. Strain and serve hot or let cool before drinking.
Sage (salvia officinalis), beside being a medicinal herb, a culinary herb and a tea herb is also used as a cosmetic herb, a salad herb, a craft herb, a household herb and a dye herb. This is one herb that I believe should be in everyone’s herb garden and there are many varieties of salvia officinalis from which to choose.