Besides being used for culinary, the garden sage herb or salvia officinalis have been used for spiritual, ceremonial and medicinal purposes since ancient times. Sage was used as a remedy for various conditions and diseases such as treatment for snake bites, stomach disorders, women's infertility and hyperhidrosis or excessive sweating.
Among the natural elements found in sage are caffeic acid, fumaric acid, niacin or vitamin B3, oleic acid, tannic acid and ursolic acid. There are also flavones and estrogenic substances. This herb has antioxidant, antispasmodic, antimicrobial and anti inflammatory properties.
Until today, sage has shown to be effective in treating hyperhidrosis. Menopausal women who are experiencing hot flashes and menopausal perspiration would benefit from taking sage leaf extract.
Two controlled studies that involved healthy people found that taking sage extract have helped improved their mental abilities. The volunteers were able to improve their cognitive function, attention span and memory.
A trial done at one of the universities in Iran found that sage was able to treat patients with mild and moderate Alzheimer's disease. A study done at the Medical research council's neurochemicals unit in Newcastle confirmed it. What the researchers found was sage reduced acetylcholine production in the brain which is one of the main reasons for memory deterioration in Alzheimer's disease.
Sage tea which contains tannin is used as an herbal remedy to treat gingivitis, laryngitis, mouth ulcers, oral cavities, sore throat, and tonsils.
The ursolic acid and fumaric acid in sage herb has the potential to treat itching skin problems associated with shingles psoriasis.
Clary sage or salvia sclarea is another species of the salvia family. This species is mostly used as ingredients for essential oils, massage oils and fragrances. Clary sage is known to produce a soothing effect. The massage oil is recommended for women during labor because it may help maintain effective contraction.