Harvested all across the world, sage or Salvia officinalis, is an herb that is most commonly known as a popular culinary spice. Aside from giving your food flavor, sage can also be used for medicinal purposes. Sage has anti-inflammatory, stimulant, carminative or anti-gas, and diuretic properties. Sage eases the common cold, acts as a digestive aid, and eases menstrual symptoms. Sage can be found in extract, tincture, tea or infusion, and poultice forms.
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Sage is a natural cold remedy. Due to this herb's astringent, diaphoretic and expectorant properties, it can help relieve colds, fevers, bronchitis, sinusitis and catarrh, which is the inflammation of the mucous membranes. Sage can reduce mucus, help expel phlegm and naturally increase sweating, which allows faster removal of the toxins that are causing the cold-like symptoms. The best forms of sage to use when experiencing a cold is either a tea that can be consumed 2 to 4 times per day or as an infusion used in a vaporizer.
Sage, both used internally and externally, can be an effective digestive aid. If you eat sage or consume it as a dietary supplement, it can help relax the smooth muscle of the digestive tract, soothe an upset stomach, improve weak digestion and increase appetite. Externally, sage can be used as a compress to soothe stomach cramps, reduce gas and relieve intestinal discomfort. Sage can also relieve colitis, indigestion, nausea, stimulate digestive enzymes and increase the flow of bile.
Sage, with its antiseptic properties especially in the form of tea, is effective for treating inflammation of the throat, tonsils, mucus membranes and mouth. It appears to coat the irritated area and relieve the discomfort associated with it. Drinking or gargling sage tea every couple of hours can help soothe a sore throat, tonsillitis, mouth and tongue ulcers, and inflamed, red gums. Using sage tea as a compress can also help reduce the inflammation linked with herpes sores, wounds, cuts, scrapes and burns.
Sage has estrogenic properties that can help treat female reproductive issues such as menstrual cramps, infertility and amenorrhea. Sage can also reduce menopausal symptoms including hot flashes and night sweats. The best form of sage to use for these female issues is as a cold tea or compress. Sage does stimulate the uterus so if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, it is not advised to use sage without a doctor's recommendation.