White sage, also known as Salvia apiana, is a medicinal herb native to California that was used anecdotally by Native American tribes for women's health issues and colds, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. This broad-leaved variety of white sage is used for medical purposes while the narrow-leaved sage, Salvia officinalis, is used mainly as a culinary seasoning. White sage, when used as a tea, can be particularly effective, because it digests quickly and relieves symptoms faster than the pill and tincture forms. Additionally, the time and care patients invest preparing tea involves them in their own therapy, which can add to positive results, according to "Acupuncture Today." Prior to using white sage tea--and all other herbal remedies--consult a qualified health care professional.
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Crushed white sage leaves can be made into a uterine hemostatic tea that regulates heavy menstruation, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. The tea is not recommended for breastfeeding women, however, because white sage can reduce lactation.
Traditionally, Native Americans treated colds by making a tea with smoked white sage leaves and drinking it in sweathouses. According to anecdotal use, white sage tea can relieve the mucous secretions of the sinuses, lungs and throat that can accompany colds. Additionally, a cup of cold white sage tea is considered an effective stomach tonic. As a warm tea that can be gargled and ingested, white sage can be used to treat sore throats, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.
Childbirth and Breastfeeding
Tea made from white sage's roots was used traditionally by Native American women after giving birth to expel the afterbirth and bolster internal healing, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. Additionally, they considered white sage tea an effective treatment for reducing lactation when a child was weaned from breastfeeding.