1. Protects Against Macular Degeneration
Several factors contribute to the deterioration of eyes with age a.k.a. age related macular degeneration. However studies have found that this process may be slowed down or alleviated by certain compounds which fight against free radicals. As previously mentioned, free radicals are harmful to cells including those of our eyes. Rosemary contains an active ingredient known as carnosic acid that counters free radicals. A study conducted by a team of scientists led by Dr. Stuart A. Lipton of Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute has reported that the carnosic acid found in rosemary can allay oxidative stress by stimulating the formation of antioxidant enzymes which translates into lesser free radicals and hence less damage to the eyes.
The carnosic acid extracted from rosemary also showed the potential to protect the photoreceptors of the eyes from damage caused by exposure to light. This was tested on rodents and the results clearly showed that the photoreceptors of those rodents that had been treated with carnosic acid had better protection from light. This was confirmed by electroretinogram tests.
The team of doctors indicated that carnosic acid showed promise as a treatment for macular degeneration and also said that they were developing derivatives of this beneficial compound that could shield the retina from deterioration.
2. Improves Hair Growth
Hair loss has become a serious problem for many individuals today. With many people living on the fast track, they have little time to care about proper nutrition for their hair and the stress of everyday life makes things worse by contributing to the dilemma of hair loss.
Rosemary has been used as a stimulant to improve hair growth in traditional medicine and even today, it is recommended by herbalists owing to the fact that it eases the circulation of blood around the scalp. A report in the Archives of Dermatology reveals that 44 percent of those individuals who used a mixture of various herbal oils including that of rosemary everyday enjoyed better hair growth. Of course, you don’t need a great many herbs to make your own rosemary hair oil! You can combine two tbsp. of rosemary oil and one oz. of grape seed oil to massage your dry scalp with every day before a shower. You may also create a mixture of four and a half tbsp. jojoba oil, six drops of rosemary oil and four drops of cedar wood oil that you can massage your scalp with each night and leave it to work its magic overnight before rinsing it the next morning.
These simple homemade oil mixtures will provide you with a tangible improvement in the condition of your hair and scalp and won’t require a lot of input on your part!
3. Improves Digestion
Rosemary oil has been used in traditional medicine as a digestive enhancer. It helps in stomach related conditions such as indigestion, gassiness, cramping, constipation and stomach swelling.
Moreover, it also boosts your appetite for food and alleviates the symptoms of nausea and heartburn. Studies have also revealed that the essential oil extracted from this herb has the ability to detoxify the liver and improve the formation and flow of bile juices that are essential for the entire digestive system. By encouraging proper blood flow in the digestive organs, it also leads to better uptake of nutrients from the food.
These properties of rosemary are the reason why it is used as an additive in foods that are particularly hard to digest e.g. different types of meat dishes. Not only does it enhance the flavor of the food but it also helps in its proper digestion.
4. Skin Care
Rosemary has a number of applications in skin care products. The abundance of beneficial compounds in this herbs are the reason for this particular property. Antioxidants like carnosic acid and rosmarinic acid, essential mineral nutrients such as iron and calcium, vitamins, and other healthy compounds such as camphor, cineole, verbenon etc. are all present in this seemingly trivial herb and make it an essential for anyone who wants a healthy skin.
In particular, the extract of rosemary, the oil from the herb and the rosemarinic acid contained in it are helpful for keeping many types of skins looking healthy and young.
There are three types of skin products in which rosemary is a particularly prominent ingredient:
1. Antiaging products: Since this herb is a rich source of potent antioxidants that fight free radicals (compounds that damage skin membrane), it has the ability to slow down visible aging in the human body. The oil taken from rosemary can lighten your skin tone and even take care of age spots! That’s not all – it also aids in tightening and improving loose skin by lending it a more flexible and youthful look. Its ability to trigger the production of cells means that it can make age lines and wrinkled skin disappear to some extent. It also has the property of stimulating blood flow that helps the skin to get nutrients vital for its health, and also removes waste and harmful compounds from the skin.
2. Oily skin products: The remarkably sharp and cutting properties of the herb make it effective against oily skin, and also make it an excellent rejuvenator and refresher. It also has some antibacterial properties that enhance its ability to treat oily skin and acne.
3. Sensitive skin products: The anti-inflammatory properties of rosemary discussed earlier can help improving the state of swollen and puffy skin. These same properties also allow rosemary to improve the look of skin plagued by chronic conditions such as eczema.
5. Good Source of Vitamin C
Fresh rosemary leaves are abundant in Vitamin C: they hold roughly 22 mg of Vitamin C per 100 g of the herb. This antioxidant vitamin is essential for the creation of collagen in our body. Collagen is the primary protein responsible for the maintenance of essentially the entire constituents of the human body.
Even those who know nothing about rosemary will be aware of the fact that Vitamin C is required to prevent scurvy and is an immune booster. So basically, when you’re having a salad containing the herb or even meat sprinkled with it, you’re boosting your immunity and ensuring that you have a properly developing body. Just remember: it has to be fresh.