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Herbs for Health: Rosemary

Updated: Apr 1

rosemary herb health

Rosemary, an aromatic and flavourful herb native to the Mediterranean region, is not only a staple in the culinary world but also offers a host of impressive health benefits. Its delightful fragrance and savoury taste make it a favourite addition to various dishes, from roasted meats and vegetables to soups and sauces.


  • From a culinary standpoint, rosemary's robust and pine-like flavour complements both traditional and contemporary recipes, infusing them with a unique and savoury essence. Whether used as a seasoning for grilled meats and fish, or incorporated into homemade bread and pasta, rosemary elevates the overall taste profile of any dish it graces.

"We love to use rosemary with grilled mackerel or sardines; combining a great source of Omega 3 fats with the flavour of the rosemary itself."
  • Rosemary contains an array of health-enhancing polyphenols, making it a valuable herb for promoting well-being. One of the primary polyphenols found in rosemary is rosmarinic acid, a potent antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties. Rosmarinic acid helps neutralise harmful free radicals in the body, which can contribute to chronic diseases and premature aging.

  • Other bioactive compounds include: carnasol, carnosic acid, cineole, geraniol, α-pinene, β-carotene, apigenin, limonene, naringin, luteolin, caffeic acid, rosmanol, vanillic acid.

  • Carnosic acid, rosmarinic acid and carnosol have demonstrated anti-diabetic effects. Carnosic acid has also been linked to neuroprotective effects. This compound may play a role in supporting brain health and cognitive function, potentially reducing the risk of neurodegenerative disorders.

  • Rosemary contains essential oils, such as cineole and camphor, which possess antimicrobial properties. These oils can help combat bacterial and fungal infections, contributing to overall immune system support and oral health.

"Endearing rosemary, a key fragrance of the South of France's maquis and the canyons of California"
 

Try using rosemary in these recipes:


  1. Rosemary and garlic roasted potatoes

  2. Rosemary focaccia

  3. Gilled mackerel (or salmon) with rosemary

Herbes de Provence recip
A classic seasoning that incorporates rosemary is Herbes de Provence
 

As part of a nutritionally rich, whole health lifestyle, at The Whole Health Practice we advocate enjoying herbs (and spices) as a regular part of one’s diet. While some herbs have shown positive results for specific health outcomes, nutrition science and the interaction of polyphenols from different plant sources is incredibly complex.


Enjoy a healthy eating pattern with a variety of herbs, spices and whole foods that work in synergy to promote maximum health. Think fruits, berries, beans, vegetables, and whole grains; add colour to your dishes wherever possible.

 

By adding rosemary to your culinary repertoire, you not only enhance the taste of your meals but also harness its potent polyphenols to support your body's health.


Stay Healthy,


Alastair


 

More than just taste, herbs can bring health and joy to our lives. Read on for our complete collection of articles, recipes and more...

 

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Related Studies

Veenstra JP, Johnson JJ. Rosemary (Salvia rosmarinus): Health-promoting benefits and food preservative properties. Int J Nutr. 2021;6(4):1-10. Epub 2021 Jun 24. PMID: 34651071; PMCID: PMC8513767.


Isbill J, Kandiah J, Kružliaková N. Opportunities for Health Promotion: Highlighting Herbs and Spices to Improve Immune Support and Well-being. Integr Med (Encinitas). 2020 Oct;19(5):30-42. PMID: 33488303; PMCID: PMC7815254.


Vázquez-Fresno R, Rosana ARR, Sajed T, Onookome-Okome T, Wishart NA, Wishart DS. Herbs and Spices- Biomarkers of Intake Based on Human Intervention Studies - A Systematic Review. Genes Nutr. 2019 May 22;14:18. doi: 10.1186/s12263-019-0636-8. PMID: 31143299; PMCID: PMC6532192.


Mackonochie M, Rodriguez-Mateos A, Mills S, Rolfe V. A Scoping Review of the Clinical Evidence for the Health Benefits of Culinary Doses of Herbs and Spices for the Prevention and Treatment of Metabolic Syndrome. Nutrients. 2023 Nov 22;15(23):4867. doi: 10.3390/nu15234867. PMID: 38068725; PMCID: PMC10708057.

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