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Sage (Salvia officinalis)

szalwianspThe sage is a plant species of the Lamiaceae family. The rich composition of this plant's ethereal oil has made it useful in medicine.

What does the sage look like and where does it come from?

A specific characteristic of this plant's appearance is its bilabial flowers with a blue-violet hue that attracts the eye. The flowers are clustered in four to eight top whorls (which you can imagine as narrow-spaced clusters of bells with two labia that ascend around the stalk). The colour of sage leaves is also interesting. It is silver green. They are soft to touch with slightly serrated edges and feature wrinkles on the top side.

Sage shrubs come from the Mediterranean Basin. Sage can be harvested from its wild habitats there. As for Poland, sage is harvested only from cultivations.

Medicinal substance content in sage

The most important component of sage is its ethereal oil (Oleum salviae), or essential oil. It features thujone, cineol, camphor, borneol and pinnene. The essential sage oil also contains tannins, flavonoids and triterpenes.

When summing up the rich composition of the sage extract, it boasts the following medicinal properties:

  • antiseptic (disinfecting);
  • styptic (reduces bleeding and causes constriction);
  • antibiotic (antibacterial);
  • antiviral;
  • antisudorific;
  • hypoglycaemic (lowers the blood sugar level);
  • stimulates secretion of bile juices;
  • increases intestinal peristalsis;
  • inhibits lactation (the excretion of milk from the mammary gland).

Therapeutic indications for sage extracts

Due to the primary action of the sage, which is an anti-inflammatory effect, the plant is used in the treatment of inflammations and purulence which develop in the oral cavity and the throat.

In internal administration, primarily as tea or dry extracts (in tablets or capsules), sage alleviates stomach pains, reduces flatulence and facilitates peristalsis (i.e. the bowel movements which move the food towards the rectum). The antiseptic action combined with antibacterial and antiviral properties can inhibit the development of pathogenes that penetrate the human system.

An interesting trait of sage is its capacity of inhibiting lactation. This is used in female patients which have already finished breast feeding and yet the mammary glands continue to produce food.
The antisudorific action is another valuable property of sage. Administered in the form of teas or tablets, sage reduces hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), and not only at the armpits or feet, but also the entire skin. This action definitely helps in the use of deodorants and other externally applied antisudorific formulas. The ability to limit the volume of secreted sweat is also used in the treatment of nocturnal sweating in persons suffering from tuberculosis.

How to make the right sage tea

In order to properly make a tea of sage, pour boiling water over one bag (or 1 to 2 grams of dry leaves) and leave to infuse under cover for about 15 minutes. Then remove the bag and cool down the tea a little. It is usually recommended to have three glasses of the infusion a day but not for more than four weeks.

Can sage be combined with other plant extracts?

The traditionally administered tinctures and infusions of sage are not the only available forms of treatment of the aforementioned disorders. There is also a gel formula (Mucosit) which contains extract of sage accompanied by extracts of Tussilago farfara, camomile, mint, thyme and oak. The composition allows the drug to eliminate all infections of the oral cavity and gums. Use of these valuable herbal extracts in a single preparation can help stop bleeding gums, treat minor wounds, reduce the pain of prosthetic decubitus ulcers and alleviate oral inflammation. The anti-inflammatory action used in the treatment of oral cavity inflammations is strictly related to other traits of sage extract: antibacterial, antiviral and antiseptic action.

Products containing Sage

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