Sage for Clearing the Mind and Much More

Sage plant leavesIf you’re only familiar with Sage (Salvia officinalis) for seasoning savory dishes, you’re missing out on a fascinating botanical remedy used in ancient, indegenous, and modern cultures for everything from congestion to spiritual enlightenment. 

Sage’s grayish leaves and purplish-blue flowers contain chemicals with antibacterial, astringent, and antiseptic properties. At your local holistic market, you can find Sage in a variety of products. It is used in natural deodorant and mouthwash because it fights bacteria responsible for gum disease. In herbal remedies, a sage tea or tincture may help ease sore throat, congestion, digestive cramping, and support mental wellness. In aromatherapy preparations, sage is most often used as an essential oil in an air diffuser or in candles. Dried White Sage is most commonly burned (known as smudging) as incense with the intention to clear the lungs, ease mental stress, and enhance mood. Though we can’t prove Sage will elevate your spiritual vibration, many people do burn Sage to facilitate relaxation during yoga or meditation.  

Using Sage as a botanical remedy is very different from cooking with the herb. Medicinal preparations and essential oils derived from Sage contain thujones, a naturally occurring chemical in the plant. If you take a higher dose of medicinal Sage than is recommended, it could cause serious health problems such as tremors, rapid heart rate, vertigo and vomiting. Consult your holistic health practitioner for guidance on the safe use of any Sage remedy.



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Sage: Herb 

National Centers for Complementary and Integrative Health Info Sheet: Sage:

Smudging with Sage

 Walch SG, Kuballa T, Stühlinger W, Lachenmeier DW. “Determination of the biologically active flavour substances thujone and camphor in foods and medicines containing sage (Salvia officinalis L.)”. Chem Cent J. (Jul 21, 2011): 5-44.

 Kennedy, D. O., Wightman, E. L. “Herbal Extracts and Phytochemicals: Plant Secondary Metabolites and the Enhancement of Human Brain Function.Advances in Nutrition: An International Review Journal. (11 January 2011): 2(1), 32–50.

 MedLine Research Citations Indexed for Salvia officinalis in herbal teas and tinctures