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    The Science Behind No1 Rosemary Water

    The story of Acciaroli was widely reported in the BBC, The Telegraph, The New York Times and several other media outlets, but rosemary has a long and interesting history. The herb features in Greek mythology, the New Testament, and Shakespearean drama, and has built a reputation as a memory-boosting restorative over the past few centuries.

    It’s a reputation that’s well-earned. Several research scientists have found that rosmarinic acid – rosemary’s active ingredient – can offer a number of health benefits to regular consumers. These studies and reports shed some more light on this unique herb’s unique properties.

    Medical and Scientific Studies

    “It turns out that there are compounds in rosemary that may be responsible for changes in memory performance.

    One of them is called Eucalyptol (1,8-cineole ) as well as smelling wonderful it may act in the same way as the drugs licensed to treat dementia, causing an increase in a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine.

    These compounds do this by preventing the breakdown of the neurotransmitter by an enzyme.

    “The implications of this kind of research are huge.”

    Prof. Mark Moss, BBC >

    “The Acciaroli study group is known to have very low rates of heart disease and Alzheimer’s. It favors a Mediterranean diet markedly infused with the herb rosemary.”

    “The results from studying the longevity of this group could be applied to our practice at UC San Diego and to patients all over the world.”

    Prof. Alan Maisel, UC San Diego News Center >

    “We found that they don’t have the sort of chronic diseases that we see in the US such as heart disease, obesity and Alzheimer’s”.

    Prof. Alan Maisel, The Daily Telegraph >

    “They eat rosemary almost every day, and they grow it – maybe this does something that helps. We know that rosemary improves brain function.”

    Prof. Alan Maisel, The Sun >

    “Considerable evidence also suggests that rosemary extracts, or its isolated components, can retard chemically induced cancers.”

    Christine M. Kaefer and John A. Milner. Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects. 2nd edition. Chapter 17: “Herbs and Spices in Cancer Prevention and Treatment”

    “Rosemary extract and its hexane fraction are important for the prevention of phosphorylation of MAPKs, thereby blocking NF-kB activation, which in turn leads to decreased expression of iNOS and COX-2, thus preventing inflammation.”

    Yu MH, Choi JH, Chae IG, et al. “Suppression of LPS-induced inflammatory activities” by Rosmarinus officinalis L. Food Chem. 2013; 136(2):1047-1054.

    “Natural anti-inflammatory compounds abound in the herbal world and are found in green tea, the spices turmeric and rosemary, feverfew and others. Because the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) is associated with a reduced risk for several cancers, it is at least plausible that natural NSAID should be explored for possible use as cancer preventives.”

    Wargovich MJ, Woods C, Hollis DM, Zander ME. “Herbals, cancer prevention and health”. J Nutr. 2001;131(11 Suppl):3034S-3036S.

    “Rosemary leaves are used for food flavoring and have been used in folk medicine for many conditions; they have antispasmodic, analgesic, antirheumatic, carminative, cholagogue, diuretic, expectorant, and antiepileptic effects.”

    Slamenova D, Kuboskova K, Horvathova E, Robichova S. “Rosemary-stimulated reduction of DNA strand breaks and FPG-sensitive sites in mammalian cells treated with H2O2 or visible light-excited Methylene Blue.” Cancer Lett. 2002;177(2):145-153.

    “The antioxidant activity of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) extracts is mainly due to phenolic abietane diterpenes and phenolic acids such as rosmarinic acid.”

    Perez Fons L, Garzon MT, Micol V. “Relationship between the antioxidant capacity and effect of rosemary polyphenols on membrane phospholipid order”. J Agric Food Chem. 2010;58(1):161-171.

    “Rosemary can be considered an herbal anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor agent.”

    Peng CH, Su JD, Chyau CC, Sung TY, Ho SS, Peng CC, Peng RY. “Supercritical fluid extracts of rosemary leaves exhibit potent anti-inflammation and anti-tumor effects”. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2007 Sep;71(9):2223-2232.

    “Rosemary (5% and 0.5%) significantly inhibited arterial thrombus formation. Only the higher concentration of common thyme (5%) had a significant antithrombotic effect. In 5% concentration, both rosemary and common thyme significantly inhibited platelet reactivity and enhanced the flow-mediated vasodilation.”

    Naemura A, Ura M, Yamashita T, Arai R, Yamamoto J. “Long term intake of rosemary and common thyme herbs inhibits experimental thrombosis without prolongation of bleeding time”. Thromb Res. 2008;122(4):517-522.

    We’d all like a better memory: remembering people’s names, remembering to phone the garage, remembering to post that letter. Well, it seems there might be a way to improve our memory that's been under our noses since ancient times. - Read the story on the BBC Website here.

    “The antibacterial and efflux inhibitory activities of these natural products make them interesting potential targets for synthesis.”

    Oluwatuyi, M., Kaatz, G. W., and Gibbons, S. “Antibacterial and resistance modifying activity of Rosmarinus officinalis”. Phytochemistry. 2004;65(24):3249-3254.

    “The anti-angiogenic activity of carnosol and carnosic acid could contribute to the chemopreventive, antitumoral and antimetastatic activities of rosemary extracts and suggests their potential in the treatment of other angiogenesis-related malignancies.”

    Lopez-Jimenez A, Garcia-Caballero M, Medina MA, Quesada AR. “Anti-angiogenic properties of carnosol and carnosic acid, two major dietary compounds from rosemary”. Eur J Nutr. 2013; 52(1):85-95.

    “In our recent search of cancer chemopreventive agents from spices, the alcohol extracts of rosemary and sage showed strong antumorigenic activities. Rosemary and sage extracts contain active antioxidative factors such as phenolic diterpenes, flavonoids and phenolic acids.”

    Ho CT, Wang M, Wei GJ, Huang TC, Huang MT. “Chemistry and antioxidative factors in rosemary and sage”. Biofactors, 2000;13(1-4):161-166.


“Further research in this field will therefore provide more evidence on the therapeutic potential of rosemary diterpenes. All the available date to date however suggest that their effect on AD is very promising and further research including clinical trials is well warranted.”

    Habtemariam, S. “The Therapeutic Potential of Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) Diterpenes for Alzheimer's Disease”. Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, January 28 2016

    “Rosemary is used internally for dyspeptic disorders and externally for hypotonic circulatory disorders and rheumatic conditions.”

    Gruenwald J, Brendler T, Jaenicke C. PDR for Herbal Medicines. 4th ed. Montvale, NJ: Thomson Healthcare; 2007:709-710.

    “Our results show that supercritical fluid rosemary extract (SFRE) displays dose-dependent antitumor activities and exerts a synergistic effect in combination with 5-FU on colon cancer cells.”

    Gonzalez-Vallinas M, Molina S, Vicente G, et al. “Antitumor effect of 5-flourouracil is enhanced by rosemary extract in both drug sensitive and resistant colon cancer cells”. Pharmacol Res. 2013; 72:61-68.

    “We treated human breast cancer cells with rosemary/carnosic acid and assessed effects on cell proliferation, cell cycle distribution, gene expression patterns, activity of the purified Na/K ATPase and combinations with curcumin. Rosemary/carnosic acid potently inhibits proliferation of ER-negative human breast cancer cells and induces G1 cell cycle arrest.”

    Einbond LS, Wu HA, Kashiwazaki R. “Carnosic acid inhibits the growth of ER-negative human breast cancer cells and synergizes with curcumin”. Fitoterapia. 2012; 83(7):1160-1168.

    “Our study shows that crude ethanolic rosemary extract (RO) has differential anti-proliferative effects on human leukemia and breast carcinoma cells.”

    Cheung S, Tai J. “Anti-proliferative and antioxidant properties of rosemary Rosmarinus officinalis”. Oncol Rep. 2007 Jun;17(6):1525-1531.

    “Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), used in traditional Turkish folk medicine for the treatment of hyperglycaemia, is widely accepted as one of the medicinal herb with the highest antioxidant activity.”

    “It was concluded that probably, due to its potent antioxidant properties, the Rosmarinus officinalis extract exerts remarkable antidiabetogenic effect.”

    Bakirel T, Bakirel U, Keles OU, Ulgen SG, Yardibi H. “In vivo assessment of antidiabetic and antioxidant activities of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) in alloxan-diabetic rabbits”. J Ethnopharmacol. 2008 Feb 28;116(1):64-73.

    These findings may have implications for treating individuals with memory impairments.

    “It supports our previous research indicating that the aroma of rosemary essential oil can enhance cognitive functioning in healthy adults, here extending to the ability to remember events and to complete tasks in the future.”

    Jemma McCready, Daily Mail

    “In conclusion, we found aromatherapy [with rosemary oil] an efficacious non-pharmacological therapy for dementia. Aromatherapy may have some potential for improving cognitive function, especially in AD patients.”

    Jimbo D, Kimura Y, Taniguchi M, Inoue M, Urakami K. “Effect of aromatherapy on patients with Alzheimer's disease”. Psychogeriatrics. 2009 Dec;9(4):173-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1479-8301.2009.00299.x.