Common Sage, Dalmatian Sage, Feuille de la Bergère, Garden Sage, Herbe Sacré, Meadow Sage, Salvia lavandulaefolia, Salvia officinalis, Sauge, Sauge Ananas, Sauge des Prairies, Sauge Divinatoire, Sauge Divine, Sauge Domestique, Sauge Officinale, Scarlet Sage, Spanish Sage, True Sage, Vraie Sauge.<br/><br/>
Overview InformationSage is an herb. The leaf is used to make medicine. There are many species of sage. The two most common species are common sage (Salvia officinalis) and Spanish sage (Salvia lavandulaefolia).
Sage is used for digestive problems, including loss of appetite, gas (flatulence), stomach pain (gastritis), diarrhea, bloating, and heartburn. It is also used for reducing overproduction of perspiration and saliva; and for depression, diabetes, high cholesterol, and a condition in which there is too little blood flow to the brain (cerebral ischemia). It is also used to improve mental performance and memory, to reduce pain after surgery, for Alzheimer's disease, and to prevent lung cancer.
Women use sage for painful menstrual periods, to correct excessive milk flow during nursing, and to reduce hot flashes during menopause. Sage is also used by men to reduce hot flashes during certain treatment for prostate cancer called androgen deprivation therapy.
Sage is applied directly to the mouth or throat for cold sores, gum disease (gingivitis), sore mouth, throat, or tongue, swollen, painful nasal passages, and swollen tonsils. It is also applied to the skin after sun exposure to prevent sunburn.
Some people inhale sage for asthma. As an aromatherapy, some people use sage to improve memory and brain function.
In foods, sage is a commonly used spice.
In manufacturing, sage is used as a fragrance component in soaps and cosmetics.
How does it work?Sage might help with chemical imbalances in the brain that cause symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. It might also improve how the body uses insulin and sugar.
Uses & Effectiveness
Possibly Effective for
- Alzheimer's disease. Taking extracts of two different sage species, common sage and Spanish sage, for 4 months seems to improve learning, memory and information processing in people with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease.
- Mental performance. Taking a single dose of common sage extract or Spanish sage essential oil by mouth seems to improve memory, alertness, and attention in healthy adults. When the essential oils of these sage species are used as aromatherapy, it seems to improve alertness, but not attention and memory.
- Diabetes. Taking common sage leaf extract three times daily for 3 months lowers fasting blood sugar and average blood sugar over time (HbA1c) in diabetes patients.
- High cholesterol. Taking common sage three times daily for 2 or 3 months reduces "bad" low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and blood fats called triglycerides, and increases "good" high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, in people with high cholesterol or high triglycerides.
- Memory. Taking a single dose of common sage extract or Spanish sage essential oil by mouth seems to improve memory in healthy adults. However, these sage species do not seem to improve memory when used as aromatherapy.
Possibly Ineffective for
- Pain after surgery. Early research shows that using an oral rinse made of common sage along with pain medications is less effective for reducing pain after surgery compared to using the drug benzydamine hydrochloride. Also, using a mouth rinse containing common sage seems to increase the risk for infection after surgery.
Insufficient Evidence for
- Hot flashes in men due to prostate cancer treatment. Early research shows that taking common sage extract three times daily for 4 weeks reduces the severity and frequency of hot flashes in prostate cancer patients who are being treated with androgen deprivation.
- Cold sores. Applying a cream containing common sage and rhubarb to cold sores may be about as effective as acyclovir (Zovirax) cream. Acyclovir cream heals the cold sores in about 6 days. It takes the sage and rhubarb cream about 7 days to heal them. Sage and rhubarb together work faster than a cream containing only sage.
- Lung cancer. People who regularly use sage as a spice seem to have a 54% lower chance of developing lung cancer compared to those who don't use sage as a spice.
- Menopausal symptoms. Early research shows that taking common sage extract (Sage Menopause, Bioforce AG) for 8 weeks improves symptoms of menopause, especially hot flashes.
- Sore throat. Using a specific spray (Valverde Salvia Rachenspray) containing common sage extract 15% reduces throat pain in people with a sore throat. However, sprays containing higher (30%) and lower (5%) amounts of common sage extract do not seem to reduce throat pain. Other early research shows that using a throat spray containing common sage and echinacea for up to 5 days improves sore throat symptoms similarly to a common sore throat drug spray.
- Sunburn. Applying an ointment containing common sage extract to the skin after exposure to UV light seems to reduce the development of skin redness.
- Swelling of the tonsils (tonsillitis). Early research shows that using a throat spray containing common sage and echinacea for up to 5 days improves symptoms of tonsillitis similarly to a commonly used drug.
- Loss of appetite.
- Stomach pain.
- Dry mouth.
- Painful periods.
- Excessive sweating.
- Other condition.
Side Effects & SafetySage is LIKELY SAFE in amounts typically used in foods. It is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth or applied to the skin in medicinal amounts, for up to 4 months.
However, sage is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in high doses or for a long time. Some species of sage, such as common sage (Salvia officinalis), contain a chemical called thujone. Thujone can be poisonous if you take too much. This chemical can cause seizures and damage the liver and nervous system. The amount of thujone varies with the species of sage, the time of harvest, growing conditions, and other factors.
Special Precautions & Warnings:Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Taking sage during pregnancy is LIKELY UNSAFE because of the possibility of consuming thujone, a chemical found in some sage. Thujone can bring on a woman's menstrual period, and this could cause a miscarriage. Avoid sage if you are breast-feeding, too. There is some evidence that thujone might reduce the supply of mother's milk.
Diabetes: Sage might lower blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Watch for signs of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and monitor your blood sugar carefully if you have diabetes and use sage. The dose of your diabetes medications may need to be adjusted by your healthcare provider.
Hormone-sensitive condition such as breast cancer, uterine cancer, ovarian cancer, endometriosis, or uterine fibroids: Spanish sage (Salvia lavandulaefolia) might have the same effects as the female hormone estrogen. If you have any condition that might be made worse by exposure to estrogen, don't use Spanish sage.
High blood pressure, low blood pressure: Spanish sage (Salvia lavandulaefolia) might increase blood pressure in some people with high blood pressure. On the other hand, common sage (Salvia officinalis) might lower blood pressure in people with blood pressure that is already low. Be sure to monitor your blood pressure.
Seizure disorders: One species of sage (Salvia officinalis) contains significant amounts of thujone, a chemical that can trigger seizures. If you have a seizure disorder, don't take sage in amounts higher than those typically found in food.
Surgery: Common sage might affect blood sugar levels. There is a concern that it might interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop using common sage as a medicine at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
Be cautious with this combination
Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs) interacts with SAGE
Sage might decrease blood sugar. Diabetes medications are also used to lower blood sugar. Taking sage along with diabetes medications might cause your blood sugar to go too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely. The dose of your diabetes medication might need to be changed.<br/><br/> Some medications used for diabetes include glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (DiaBeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase), and others.
Medications used to prevent seizures (Anticonvulsants) interacts with SAGE
Medications used to prevent seizures affect chemicals in the brain. Sage may also affect chemicals in the brain. By affecting chemicals in the brain, sage may decrease the effectiveness of medications used to prevent seizures.<br/><br/> Some medications used to prevent seizures include phenobarbital, primidone (Mysoline), valproic acid (Depakene), gabapentin (Neurontin), carbamazepine (Tegretol), phenytoin (Dilantin), and others.
Sedative medications (CNS depressants) interacts with SAGE
Sage might cause sleepiness and drowsiness. Medications that cause sleepiness are called sedatives. Taking sage along with sedative medications might cause too much sleepiness.<br/><br/> Some sedative medications include clonazepam (Klonopin), lorazepam (Ativan), phenobarbital (Donnatal), zolpidem (Ambien), and others.
The following doses have been studied in scientific research:
- For treating Alzheimer's disease: 1 gram of sage per day. A dose of sage extract, gradually increased over time to 2.5 mg three times daily, has also been used.
- For improving mental performance or memory: 25-50 mcL of Spanish sage essential oil or 333 mg of common sage extract have been taken as a single dose before mental tests.
- For diabetes: 500 mg of common sage extract has been used three times per day for 3 months.
- For high cholesterol: 500 mg of common sage extract has been used three times per day for 2 or 3 months.
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- Horiuchi, K., Shiota, S., Kuroda, T., Hatano, T., Yoshida, T., and Tsuchiya, T. Potentiation of antimicrobial activity of aminoglycosides by carnosol from Salvia officinalis. Biol.Pharm.Bull. 2007;30(2):287-290. View abstract.
- Howes, M. J. and Perry, E. The role of phytochemicals in the treatment and prevention of dementia. Drugs Aging 6-1-2011;28(6):439-468. View abstract.
- Hubbert, M., Sievers, H., Lehnfeld, R., and Kehrl, W. Efficacy and tolerability of a spray with Salvia officinalis in the treatment of acute pharyngitis - a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study with adaptive design and interim analysis. Eur J Med Res 1-31-2006;11(1):20-26. View abstract.
- Iuvone, T., De Filippis, D., Esposito, G., D'Amico, A., and Izzo, A. A. The spice sage and its active ingredient rosmarinic acid protect PC12 cells from amyloid-beta peptide-induced neurotoxicity. J Pharmacol Exp Ther 2006;317(3):1143-1149. View abstract.
- Jedinak, A., Muckova, M., Kost'alova, D., Maliar, T., and Masterova, I. Antiprotease and antimetastatic activity of ursolic acid isolated from Salvia officinalis. Z Naturforsch.C. 2006;61(11-12):777-782. View abstract.
- Johnson, J. J. Carnosol: a promising anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory agent. Cancer Lett. 6-1-2011;305(1):1-7. View abstract.
- Juhas, S., Cikos, S., Czikkova, S., Vesela, J., Il'kova, G., Hajek, T., Domaracka, K., Domaracky, M., Bujnakova, D., Rehak, P., and Koppel, J. Effects of borneol and thymoquinone on TNBS-induced colitis in mice. Folia Biol.(Praha) 2008;54(1):1-7. View abstract.
- Kavvadias, D., Monschein, V., Sand, P., Riederer, P., and Schreier, P. Constituents of sage (Salvia officinalis) with in vitro affinity to human brain benzodiazepine receptor. Planta Med. 2003;69(2):113-117. View abstract.
- Kennedy, D. O., Dodd, F. L., Robertson, B. C., Okello, E. J., Reay, J. L., Scholey, A. B., and Haskell, C. F. Monoterpenoid extract of sage (Salvia lavandulaefolia) with cholinesterase inhibiting properties improves cognitive performance and mood in healthy adults. J.Psychopharmacol. 2011;25(8):1088-1100. View abstract.
- Kennedy, D. O., Pace, S., Haskell, C., Okello, E. J., Milne, A., and Scholey, A. B. Effects of cholinesterase inhibiting sage (Salvia officinalis) on mood, anxiety and performance on a psychological stressor battery. Neuropsychopharmacology 2006;31(4):845-852. View abstract.
- Kianbakht, S., Abasi, B., Perham, M., and Hashem, Dabaghian F. Antihyperlipidemic effects of Salvia officinalis L. leaf extract in patients with hyperlipidemia: a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. Phytother.Res. 2011;25(12):1849-1853. View abstract.
- Konishi, Y., Hitomi, Y., Yoshida, M., and Yoshioka, E. Pharmacokinetic study of caffeic and rosmarinic acids in rats after oral administration. J Agric Food Chem 6-15-2005;53(12):4740-4746. View abstract.
- Kwon, Y. I., Vattem, D. A., and Shetty, K. Evaluation of clonal herbs of Lamiaceae species for management of diabetes and hypertension. Asia Pac.J Clin Nutr 2006;15(1):107-118. View abstract.
- Lalicevic, S. and Djordjevic, I. Comparison of benzydamine hydrochloride and Salvia officinalis as an adjuvant local treatment to systemic nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug in controlling pain after tonsillectomy, adenoidectomy, or both: An open-label, single-blind, randomized clinical trial. Current Therapeutic Research, Clinical and Experimental 2004;65:360-372.
- Lima, C. F., Andrade, P. B., Seabra, R. M., Fernandes-Ferreira, M., and Pereira-Wilson, C. The drinking of a Salvia officinalis infusion improves liver antioxidant status in mice and rats. J Ethnopharmacol. 2-28-2005;97(2):383-389. View abstract.
- Lima, C. F., Azevedo, M. F., Araujo, R., Fernandes-Ferreira, M., and Pereira-Wilson, C. Metformin-like effect of Salvia officinalis (common sage): is it useful in diabetes prevention? Br.J Nutr 2006;96(2):326-333. View abstract.
- Lima, C. F., Fernandes-Ferreira, M., and Pereira-Wilson, C. Drinking of Salvia officinalis tea increases CCl(4)-induced hepatotoxicity in mice. Food Chem.Toxicol. 2007;45(3):456-464. View abstract.
- Lima, C. F., Valentao, P. C., Andrade, P. B., Seabra, R. M., Fernandes-Ferreira, M., and Pereira-Wilson, C. Water and methanolic extracts of Salvia officinalis protect HepG2 cells from t-BHP induced oxidative damage. Chem Biol Interact. 4-25-2007;167(2):107-115. View abstract.
- Loizzo, M. R., Tundis, R., Menichini, F., Saab, A. M., Statti, G. A., and Menichini, F. Cytotoxic activity of essential oils from labiatae and lauraceae families against in vitro human tumor models. Anticancer Res 2007;27(5A):3293-3299. View abstract.
- Lovenich, H., Schutt-Gerowitt, H., Keulertz, C., Waldschmidt, D., Bethe, U., Sohngen, D., and Cornely, O. A. Failure of anti-infective mouth rinses and concomitant antibiotic prophylaxis to decrease oral mucosal colonization in autologous stem cell transplantation. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2005;35(10):997-1001. View abstract.
- Masuda, T., Inaba, Y., and Takeda, Y. Antioxidant mechanism of carnosic acid: structural identification of two oxidation products. J Agric.Food Chem. 2001;49(11):5560-5565. View abstract.
- Masuda, T., Inaba, Y., Maekawa, T., Takeda, Y., Tamura, H., and Yamaguchi, H. Recovery mechanism of the antioxidant activity from carnosic acid quinone, an oxidized sage and rosemary antioxidant. J Agric.Food Chem. 10-9-2002;50(21):5863-5869. View abstract.
- Mayer, B., Baggio, C. H., Freitas, C. S., dos Santos, A. C., Twardowschy, A., Horst, H., Pizzolatti, M. G., Micke, G. A., Heller, M., dos Santos, E. P., Otuki, M. F., and Marques, M. C. Gastroprotective constituents of Salvia officinalis L. Fitoterapia 2009;80(7):421-426. View abstract.
- Mayer, E., Gescheidt-Shoshany, H., and Weltfriend, S. Allergic contact dermatitis caused by Salvia officinalis extract. Contact Dermatitis 2011;64(4):237-238. View abstract.
- Millet, Y., Tognetti, P., Lavaire-Pierovisi, M., Steinmetz, M-D., Arditti, J., and Jouglard, J. Etude experimentale des proprietes toxiques convulsivantes des essences de sauge et d'hysope du commerce. Rev EEG Neurophysiol 1979;(9):-12.
- Molochko, V. A., Lastochkina, T. M., Krylov, I. A., and Brangulis, K. A. [The antistaphylococcal properties of plant extracts in relation to their prospective use as therapeutic and prophylactic formulations for the skin]. Vestn.Dermatol Venerol. 1990;(8):54-56. View abstract.
- Moss, L., Rouse, M., Wesnes, K. A., and Moss, M. Differential effects of the aromas of Salvia species on memory and mood. Hum.Psychopharmacol. 2010;25(5):388-396. View abstract.
- Muhlbauer, R. C., Lozano, A., Palacio, S., Reinli, A., and Felix, R. Common herbs, essential oils, and monoterpenes potently modulate bone metabolism. Bone 2003;32(4):372-380. View abstract.
- Munne-Bosch, S. and Alegre, L. Drought-induced changes in the redox state of alpha-tocopherol, ascorbate, and the diterpene carnosic acid in chloroplasts of Labiatae species differing in carnosic acid contents. Plant Physiol 2003;131(4):1816-1825. View abstract.
- Nolkemper, S., Reichling, J., Stintzing, F. C., Carle, R., and Schnitzler, P. Antiviral effect of aqueous extracts from species of the Lamiaceae family against Herpes simplex virus type 1 and type 2 in vitro. Planta Med 2006;72(15):1378-1382. View abstract.
- O'Mahony, R., Al Khtheeri, H., Weerasekera, D., Fernando, N., Vaira, D., Holton, J., and Basset, C. Bactericidal and anti-adhesive properties of culinary and medicinal plants against Helicobacter pylori. World J Gastroenterol. 12-21-2005;11(47):7499-7507. View abstract.
- Oboh, G. and Henle, T. Antioxidant and inhibitory effects of aqueous extracts of Salvia officinalis leaves on pro-oxidant-induced lipid peroxidation in brain and liver in vitro. J Med Food 2009;12(1):77-84. View abstract.
- Oniga, I., Parvu, A. E., Toiu, A., and Benedec, D. Effects of Salvia officinalis L. extract on experimental acute inflammation. Rev.Med Chir Soc.Med Nat.Iasi 2007;111(1):290-294. View abstract.
- Orhan, I. and Aslan, M. Appraisal of scopolamine-induced antiamnesic effect in mice and in vitro antiacetylcholinesterase and antioxidant activities of some traditionally used Lamiaceae plants. J.Ethnopharmacol. 3-18-2009;122(2):327-332. View abstract.
- Orhan, I., Kartal, M., Kan, Y., and Sener, B. Activity of essential oils and individual components against acetyl- and butyrylcholinesterase. Z.Naturforsch.C. 2008;63(7-8):547-553. View abstract.
- Osawa, K., Matsumoto, T., Yasuda, H., Kato, T., Naito, Y., and Okuda, K. The inhibitory effect of plant extracts on the collagenolytic activity and cytotoxicity of human gingival fibroblasts by Porphyromonas gingivalis crude enzyme. Bull.Tokyo Dent Coll. 1991;32(1):1-7. View abstract.
- Pavela, R. Insecticidal activity of certain medicinal plants. Fitoterapia 2004;75(7-8):745-749. View abstract.
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