Rosemary’s Baby or at least her Benefits

“Oh, and it cures world hunger.” This was a sarcastic taunt from my middle son as we were reviewing the medicinal benefits of Rosmarinus officinalis.

Flickr.cc.dnak_Rosemary

I cut a bunch of rosemary from my front porch garden to flavor a tray of roasting winter vegetables. Calvin, on the other hand, had another idea. He immediately called for the mortar and pestle and began breaking down the leaves before dowsing them with boiling water. He created a big pot of rosemary tea and had he not done so, I would’ve never discovered that he didn’t invent the idea.

Rosemary or rosmarinus officinalis is a popular culinary herb in my kitchen. I love the piney aroma and the fact that it grows as an abundant evergreen with minimal attention. In fact, it is so easy that I often spy it at a hedge amongst office buildings and parking lots in our city. What I did not know was exactly how useful this herb can be.

It appears that rosemary is one of the oldest herbs in cultivation first used for culinary and healing purposes in Rome and Egypt. While ancient physicians documented its use against many physical ailments, modern medicine has also claimed it as a powerful healing agent. There are a number of recent studies:

My research and Calvin’s experiment uncovers that one of the best ways to benefit from the excellent properties of rosemary is by drinking it as a tea. It contains powerful antioxidants and many vitamins. Rosemary leaves are high Vitamin A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, biotin, pantothenic acid, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E and Vitamin K. Whew! Apparently, you can also gargle with it for it’s antiseptic properties or add the tea to your bath water to assist with poor circulation or skin irritations. We uncover more not nearly so well-documented benefits from increasing brain function to preventing cancer.

And of course, there is the fine print; consult your physician before ingesting rosemary tea if you are pregnant or suffer from high blood pressure, hypertension, insomnia, or epilepsy.

Turn your kids loose in the kitchen and see what they might discover! Best yet, turn yourself loose and enjoy a cup of rosemary tea – today’s cure for world hunger.

Rosemary Tea
Ingredients:
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary or fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • agave as sweetener, if desired

Steep for 10 minutes. Then, strain and sip and enjoy the many benefits.

Leave a comment

85 Comments

  1. Sally Mom

     /  March 10, 2011

    You hit the nail on the head again, Tammy. Rosemary is one of my favorite herbs . Among herbs Rosemary and Oregano rank among the best phytonutrient sources, Turmeric and ginger also
    powerful The ancient Greeks used Rosemary for many medicinals including memory. Mixed with garlic it is absolutely delicious with lamb. An amazing plant to be sure. Just smelling it makes me smile.
    Thanks for reminding us and kudos to Calvin.

    Reply
  2. I found this interesting and informative, thanks so much for sharing.

    Reply
  3. This is great info. I love cooking with rosemary for the flavor, but I had no idea it has so many wonderful additional benefits and uses. Thank you!

    Reply
  4. I love rosemary! It’s always been one of my favorite herbs, and now I have even more reasons to use it. Thanks for the great information!

    Reply
  5. Thanks for the great information. I hesitate to use my rosemary when it is in bloom. Does anyone know if this affects the flavor at all? I would remove the flowers, of course. All I know is that fresh herbs should be most flavorful when cut in the morning, before the sun is on them. Thank you for any help!

    Reply
    • I know that Sally Mom knows the answer to this. We’ll get back.

      Reply
    • Lisa H

       /  March 21, 2011

      Often, plants will have a different flavor when they are flowering and going to seed. Although perfectly fine to eat when flowering, the flavor may be altered a bit, usually more bitter. You may find you enjoy it!
      Another fun way to use herb flowers is to fill an ice cube tray (remember those?) half full with water, place flowers of your favorite herb on top and freeze. When frozen, fill until full and refreeze. Use these beautiful ice cubes for a lovely addition to your beverage.

      Reply
  6. LOVE rosemary! I have fresh pots of assorted herbs, including rosemary, on my kitchen window sill. I didn’t know all the medical benefits of it (tho, I am not surprised).
    Herbs, in general, are simply amazing and I try to use them as often as I can.

    I even have a body wash that contains charcoal and rosemary…feels so nice! May have to dab around the eyes now that I know it protects against wrinkles…

    Reply
  7. Sally Mom

     /  March 10, 2011

    Edible Rosemary flowers? Yes, absolutely. Nice in seafood or chicken salads, even sprinkled in green salads and mixed in melted butter with garlic for an artichoke dip.
    Always remember with any flower, that it has not come to you with pesticides.
    Do not forget to use the tougher woody stems as skewers for shrimp, scallops, chicken and lamb. Wonderful for vegetables as well.
    Enjoy.

    Reply
  8. kjacobs729

     /  March 10, 2011

    Very cool! I used to be a black-tea-is-the-only-real-tea person, but I’ve had to branch out to cut back on my caffeine intake. This sounds interesting. I’m excited to give it a try.

    Reply
  9. Barbara Miller-Collins

     /  March 10, 2011

    Thanks for a great reminder about rosemary. I had forgotten (if I ever knew) its great benefit to kidneys…and that is useful info for me. Kudos to Calvin!

    Reply
  10. Delightful information! I use a lot of rosemary in my kitchen and I like herbal tea. I’ll definitely try a cup of rosemary tea. Blessings to you, Tammy…

    Reply
  11. Sammy

     /  March 10, 2011

    Thanks Tammy I love rosemary bread. I will give the tea a try.

    Reply
  12. Sounds like a lovely tea for after a big dinner!

    Reply
  13. I love rosemary: the smell of it, its beautiful blue flowers, and its astringent taste. It is exotic. I have never drunk it as a tea. Must try it…thanks Tammy….

    Reply
  14. How cool is that! Sounds like you’ve raised him right, Tammy.

    Reply
  15. Tell Calvin he’s still my hero! 🙂

    We love rosemary-garlic foccacia and roasted veggies and potatoes with rosemary. One of favorite herbs.

    Thanks, Tammy

    Reply
  16. Kath (My Funny Little Life)

     /  March 10, 2011

    I love rosemary, and I should definitely use it more! Going straight to the kitchen to make your rosemary tea now. 🙂

    Reply
  17. I adore rosemary, so am delighted to hear it’s so good for me 😉 There’s a rosemary bush at my parents’ place that is always threatening to take over the garden, so I’ve grown up eating it in lots of dishes. Have never made tea with it though – great idea!

    Reply
  18. Mmmm! Rosemary tea sounds lovely. Jim Duke has rosemary in the Alzheimers section of his garden, saying that it has been shown to aid systems that support cognitive functioning. I found this especially interesting given rosemary’s folk reputation of aiding memory (“rosemary for remembrance”).

    Reply
    • Wow. I’ve never heard that “rosemary for remembrance”. But yes, I did find an Alzheimers study as well touting the benefits. Really, it doesn’t seem like there is anything it can’t do.

      Reply
  19. Great to hear my favorite herb is a multitasker I love to put it over coals to roast and smoke beets, onions, and other roots.

    Reply
  20. I LOOOOVE Rosemary! It’s my favorite herb! I also love that it grows like a weed all around where I live….it’s literally everywhere!

    Reply
  21. All that buildup, and I can’t use it if I’m an insomniac! Hmmm…maybe ive got too much of it in my system already rom my wife’s cooking. I’ll have to blame her for my insomnia. I’ll have to check into that. Anyway, once again good post. You’ve gotta put all of this in a book 🙂

    Reply
  22. The oil I’m wearing contains geranium, rosemary, vetiver and lavender. It may sound like a strange combination but it is very subtle and smells divine.

    Reply
  23. I love learning about plant medicinals! Great stuff

    Reply
  24. I love the smell of rosemary. It’s also one of the more photogenic herbs. Interesting info about rosemary.

    Reply
  25. This is very interesting, Tammy. Thank you. I also love some rosemary leaves grilled with vegetables. Or in tomato sauces. Or on pasta. As a tea, I heard it helped lessening allergies at this time of the year.

    Reply
  26. Just went through the garden checklist. Rosemary sounds like a great herb to start off with. On a fun note, we just ate the first pomegranate from our indoor dwarf tree! Very scrumptious.

    Reply
  27. You have such an awesome blog I gave you the Stylish Blogger Award.
    Congrats!

    Reply
  28. Kalli

     /  March 13, 2011

    i had no idea about this at all! thank you for such an informative post!

    Reply
  29. Ahhh! I love Rosemary! Its so funny, I can grow veggies,fruits, herbs and all number of weeds,but I keep messing things up with my Rosemary! I think Im just gonna plant it and forget it!

    Reply
  30. I love to nibble a little rosemary when I’m working in the garden, contemplating its healing energy and memory-boosting powers. Now, I can add a few more powers to my contemplation. In New Hampshire, I lose my rosemary every winter unless I pot it up and successfully overwinter it inside the house (which is hard). This year, I was successful; I kept two large plants in an unheated room for the entire winter. They’ll be beautiful and huge in the garden this spring.
    Eleanor

    Reply
  31. Rosemary is one of my favorite herbs. Yet I can’t seem to grow it. I kill it every time. I have the same trouble with lavender. I may have to give it a try again this year and see if my luck has changed.

    Reply
  32. I adore rosemary and now will positively try the rosemary “tea”. Sounds lovely. My favorite new rosemary dish though is far from health conscious—rosemary lemon olive oil cake. It’s crazy good. Thank you for sharing the many health benefits of rosemary.

    Reply
  33. I’m so glad you posted this. Rosemary is truly one of my favorite herbs. I had no idea about the medicinal qualities, though. I’ll need to brew myself a pot of that tea. 🙂

    Here’s a tip if you haven’t tried it: use a mortar and pestle to grind up some rosemary and sea salt, then mix it into some sweet cream butter. Spread a generous amount across a slice of warm sourdough. Delish!

    Reply
  34. Mmm, rosemary tea sounds delicious! I will have to try some this week.

    Reply
  35. I grow and cook with rosemary–never made tea, though—something new and wonderful to try. (Also, Geni Sweet and Crumbly’s Rosemary Lemon Olive Oil Cake sounds tremendous.)
    Thanks for another informative post, Tammy.

    Reply
  36. Amazing that such a healthy herb stimulates seizures in any people who are susceptible to them – like epileptics. In our senior’s residence, rosemary is not used in cooking for this reason.

    I love creams made with rosemary and smear them on liberally when I’m not going to be around vulnerable people.

    (In case some one is susceptible to any types of seizures and reads this, I hope they know that fabric softener is another trigger. Take a moment to read about the harmful effects of fabric softener in other ways as well. I use vinegar to eliminate static cling.)

    Reply
  37. Yes, that’s why I put the fine print warning. It seems there are a few things that rosemary can accelerate and epilepsy is one of those things.

    Reply
  38. Lisa H

     /  March 21, 2011

    Mmmmm, I love rosemary! Never thought of making tea, so I’ll give that a try! Since only the leaves are used, save the long branches to use as skewers. We’ve barbecued shrimp on them, but you could put veggies and meat on them as well.

    Reply
  39. Glad to hear the rosemary I love so well is also so good for me. I just wish mine would grow flowers like that here in Wisconsin!

    Reply
  40. I love rosemary, and this post is brilliant, I learned so many great facts and tips. I just wish I could grow it in my apartment. I have not had much luck lately and it depresses me when I managed to knock off the last one as I think they are generally very hearty. I have no idea what I did.

    Reply
  41. suzannc

     /  August 29, 2012

    I love this idea. Thank you!

    Reply
  1. Birth 2 School » Blog Archive » Rosemary's Baby or at least her Benefits « Agrigirl's Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: