Rosemary is an excellent tonic and all-round stimulant that has always been regarded as uplifting and energising. Gerard said that it “comforteth the harte and maketh it merie”.

Botanical Name: Rosmarinus officinalis

Common name: Rosemary

Family: Lamiaceae

Parts Used: Aerial Part – Harvest fresh all year round

Active Constituents: 

  • Phenolic acids
  • Bitter substances
  • Triterpenoid acids
  • Flavonoids
  • Volatile oil


  • Carminative
  • Spasmolytic, digestive / aromatic
  • Antioxidant
  • Antimicrobial
  • Hepatoprotective
  • Cholagogue
  • Circulatory stimulant
  • Stimulant – nervous & circulatory
  • Thymoleptic?
  • Cognition enhancer?
  • Rubefacient
  • TOPICALLY – Analgesic

“If thou be feeble boyle the leaves in cleane water and washe thyself and thou shalt be shiny… smell it oft and it shall keep thee youngly” – Banckes’ Herbal, 1525


  • Increasing mental alertness and memory
  • Enhancing phase 1 and 2 detoxification by the liver
  • Circulatory weakness
  • Hypotension
  • Headache
  • Depression
  • Debility
  • Topical treatment for myalgia, sciatica
  • Wound healing
  • Locally hair wash and dandruff
  • Traditionally prescribed to stimulate the mind, memory and senses

Hoffman suggests rosemary has a toning and calming effect on digestion along with being a circulatory and nerving stimulant. This indicates use in cases where psychological tension is present – flatulent dyspepsia, headache or depression associated with debility.

Contraindications: None Known


  • Caution for women wishing to conceive, based on the cineole content in its essential oil
  • Potential interaction for concomitant administration of rosemary during iron intake – Separate doses

    Dosage: 15-30ml of 1:2 FE per week


  • INFUSION: Take a hot infusion for colds, influenza and indigestion. Also can be used as a stimulating drink for fatigue or headaches
  • COMPRESS: Soak pad in hot infusion and use for sprains. Alternate  2 or 3 minutes of the hot compress with 2 or 3 minutes of applying ice pack to the injury
  • HAIR RINSE: Use infusion as the final rinse for dandruff
  • ESSENTIAL OIL: Add 10 drops in bath to soothe aching limbs or act as stimulant in nervous exhaustion
  • MASSAGE OIL: Dilute 1ml Rosemary oil in 25ml almond oil and massage into aching joints and muscles or into scalp to stimulate hair growth. Use on temples for headaches.
  • Combine with Oats, Skullcap or Vervain for depression/nervous exhaustion (Ody)

References & Links to Articles:

Ody, Penelope (1998). The Herb Society’s Complete Medicinal Herbal. Milan: Dorling Kindersley

Hoffman, D. (1990). Holistic Herbal. London: Thorsons

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