BOTANICAL NAME: Salvia officinalis
FAMILY NAME: Lamiaceae - Sages are members of the mint family
Sage originated in the mediterranean countries but is now cultivated in Europe, Canada, and the United States. In India, its cultivation in gardens has been tried in Jammu for its essential oil. The plants are reported to have done well and the quality of the oil obtained is comparable to that of foreign origin.
Sage is an evergreen woody stemmed shrub which grows up to 60 cms high. It has greyish green stalked leaves, rough in texture. the flowers are purplish blue. The dried herb is grey, tinged with green. It has strong spicy aroma and a slightly bitter nad astringent taste.
Sage contains a
- volatile oil
- bitter principle
The Sage oil is composed of:
The fresh leaves of Sage provide appreciable amounts vitamin A and C.
Sage has always played a great part in the history of botanic medicine. the Chinese adage 'sage for old age' sums up its healthful qualities. It has a reputation to retarted old age, restore energy and aid digestion. In pharmaceutical writings, sage is listed among the natural antiseptics.
Mecicinal uses of Sage
stimulant, astringent, tonic, carminative, aromatic. Sage makes an excellent gargle for relaxed throat and tonsils, bleeding gums, laryngitis and ulcerated throat. Sage tea is valuable against delirium of fevers, nervous excitement and accompanying brain and nervous disease; as a stimulant tonic in stomach and vervous system complaints and in weak digestion. It also works as an emmenagogue, in treating typhoid fever, bilious and liver problems, kidney troubles and lung or stomach haemorrhages. The infusion is used in head colds, quinsy, measles, painful joints, lethargy, palsy and nervous headaches. Freash leaves are rubbed on the teeth to cleanse them and strengthen gums - even today sage is included in toothpowders. The oil of sage was used to remove mucus collections from the respiratory organs and is included in embrocations for rheumatism. The herb is also applied warm as a poultice.