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This 1 Herb Works Better than Pharmaceutical Drugs at Curing Memory Loss
“This proves how valuable the work by the old herbalists is, and that they shouldn’t just be ignored because they were writing centuries ago,” says Nicola Tildesley, lead researcher of a sage study. “Test would need to be carried on people over a longer period of time to prove that sage improves exam performance but we don’t have any plans to do this at present. However, this research does have serious implications for people suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease, as it will inform drug research and development.”
Current drugs used to treat memory loss, such as donepezil, often come at a cost: Its side effects are innumerable, if not dangerous. But treating age-related memory loss with a single dose of sage may potentially be the way to treat conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease without ever having to swallow a single drug.
For researchers, it’s potential proof that going all natural may be the key to future treatments–something that understandably appeals to the public.
“Rosmarinic acid, a powerful antioxidant in rosemary and sage, prevents oxidative damage to the brain, a key factor in cognitive decline and memory loss,” explains Jim Healthy, author of My Healing Kitchen. “Besides rosmarinic acid, sage also contains superoxide dismutase (SOD) and peroxidase, two powerful antioxidant enzymes. This combination of antioxidants delivers a mighty triad of brain-protecting power.”
How Sage Prevents Memory Loss
Working on behalf of the Medicinal Plant Research Centre (MPRC) in the U.K., researchers recruited 44 healthy adults to undergo a study testing the efficacy of sage in capsule form. The study was the first of its kind: Although researchers as far back as 1597 suggested sage could heal the brain, no significant studies had actually been carried out on this key herb.
To test its efficacy, researchers split the participants into two groups and gave them either of the following–a capsule containing sage or a placebo. They then tested their memory by giving them a standard word recall test.
The result? Those who took the capsule containing sage performed better when it came to word recall, suggesting their memories had improved.
“It could potentially be used on a much broader basis for anybody who wanted to improve their memory,” says Tildesley. ”
In fact, the results turned out so well that the findings were presented at the 2003 British Pharmaceutical Conference–and today remains one of the top choices for osteopaths for treating memory loss.
How to Best Enjoy Sage
Evidence shows that a daily dose of sage per day could do a lot of good–but what’s the best way to use sage to your advantage? For now, play it simple: A teaspoon of fresh sage per day, added into your favorite foods, could give you the brain boost to keep memory loss at bay. A touch of sage added to chicken, turkey, and pasta casserole adds a savory touch to any meal.
Readers: What are some other ways you enjoy sage?