Have you ever wondered why a wise person is sometimes called a “sage,” or why good advice is described as “sage”? It’s all because of a common culinary herb with uncommon health benefits.
Sage is renowned for boosting the brain, but this amazing herb also contains an unusually large number of Foundation Supplements.
Savory Sage: a Treasure Trove of Bone-Healthy Nutrients and More
Sage (Salvia officinalis) is known for its dusty, spicy fragrance and its use in many culinary dishes, especially stuffing, soups, and more.
What’s more, this alkalizing Mediterranean herb has been prized for centuries for its ability to stave off disease, lift sad moods, and enhance the mind.
As mentioned earlier, sage also contains no less than 11 Foundation Supplements (nutrients essential for bone health as outlined in the Osteoporosis Reversal Program), and it also provides an astounding number of health benefits.
Here are some of the bone-healthy nutrients you’ll find in sage:
- Vitamin C*
- B Vitamins, including B9* (folic acid), B1* (thiamin), B6* (pyridoxine), and B2* (riboflavin)
- Vitamin K*
- Vitamin A
- Calcium* – 1 teaspoon of ground sage has 10 milligrams of this bone-building mineral.
Growing, Storing, and Using Sage
Sage is not difficult to grow in a sunny area with well-drained soil. It does well in containers, too, if you don’t have garden space for it. If you buy fresh, cut sage in the store, look for fresh leaves and stems that are not wilted, blemished, or moldy. Store fresh sage in a zip-top bag in the refrigerator.
Dried sage is fine, too, preferably organic. It should be kept in an air-tight container in a cool, dark place so it can retain its flavor. Remember that dried herbs are more concentrated, so you need a smaller amount.
There are various ways to enjoy sage. The following recipe is for a delicious, chilled tomato-based soup with alkalizing vegetables, perfect for a hot summer day.
Chilled Tomato Soup with Sage
First, you’ll need to make fresh tomato sauce, which is the base for the soup.
Ingredients for Tomato Sauce:
- 2 pounds fresh, ripe tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
Coarsely chop the tomatoes into a heavy saucepan dish and stir in the salt and olive oil. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer gently for 25 minutes. You can simmer it longer if it seems too thin. Then simply puree the mixture in a blender.
Now you’re ready to make the soup.
Ingredients for Tomato Soup with Sage:
- 3 cups homemade tomato sauce
- 1 medium zucchini, diced
- ¼ pound fresh green beans, cut into small pieces
- 1 medium onion, sliced thinly
- 4 large sage leaves, minced
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 ¾ cups water
- Sea salt to taste
- Olive oil for sautéing
In a heavy saucepan, sauté the beans, onion, and zucchini in olive oil. Stir in the garlic and lemon zest; sauté for about 4 minutes. Add the tomato sauce and water, and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes. Stir in the sage and simmer for a few minutes more; then remove from heat. Cool soup to room temperature, then chill in the refrigerator and serve cold. Makes 3 to 4 servings.
When you enjoy this wonderful soup, you’re nourishing your bones with all the healthy ingredients, including sage. But sage does more than just benefit your bones. In fact,
Sage Has Many Healthy Properties
Here are just some of them:
- Wards off colds and flu (you can steep it as a warming, immune-boosting tea in the wintertime)
- Antiseptic (tea can be used as a wound wash)
- Improves mood and lifts depression
- Promotes cardiovascular health by relaxing the vascular system
- Enhances concentration and attention span
- Improves memory
This last point about sage – that it improves memory – is one of the most remarkable features of this herb. In fact, studies have shown that sage is an effective deterrent to the development of Alzheimer’s disease. Amazingly, sage has even been shown to improve the cognitive function in people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s.
As we’ll soon see, there are sound physiological and scientific reasons for why wise people are called “sages.” At least 3 studies show clearly that…
Scientifically Proven: Sage Improves Memory and Cognitive Function
Twenty-first century research confirms what herbalists have been saying about sage for centuries. In one study, British researchers gave sage oil (Salvia lavandulaefolia) capsules or a placebo to adults age 18 to 37 years, and observed that participants who had taken the sage oil consistently performed better on memory tests.1
In another similar study, older, healthy participants aged 65 to 90 years were given an extract of the more common variety of sage, Salvia officinalis, or a placebo. Those given sage showed “significant enhancement of secondary memory performance at all testing times. …There also were significant improvements to accuracy of attention following the 333-mg dose.”2
Still another study illustrates that sage can improve the cognitive function in those with Alzheimer’s disease. In this study, which lasted 4 months, participants were aged 65 to 80 and had received a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s. They were given a placebo or an extract of S. officinalis. Those who took the sage showed marked improvement in cognition. “The results of this study indicate the efficacy of S. officinalis extract in the management of mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease,”2 the study observes.
In addition, no side effects were observed among the participants. This is a stark contrast to the side effects that come with conventional Alzheimer’s drugs, many of which (ironically) mimic the disease itself, such as depression and confusion.
In addition to incorporating sage into your diet, another important thing to do is avoid aluminum foil. Aluminum has been implicated strongly in Alzheimer’s, and autopsies have revealed alarming quantities of aluminum in the brains of Alzheimer’s sufferers.
Here’s to strong bones and sharp minds!
1 N.T.J. Tildesley, et al. “Salvia lavandulaefolia (Spanish Sage) enhances memory in healthy, young volunteers.” Pharmacology, Biochemistry, and Behavior. 75 (2003) 669-674. Web. (find site)
2 Scholey, B. Andrew, et al. “An extract of Salvia (sage) with anticholinesterase properties improves memory and attention in healthy older volunteers.” Psychopharmacology. (2008) 198:127-139. DOI 10.1007/s00213-008-1101-3. Web.
3 Akhondzadeh, S., et al. “Salvia officinalis extract in the treatment of patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease: a double blind, randomized and placebo-controlled trial.” Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics. 2003 Feb; 28(1):53-9. Web. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12605619