Rosemary helps with work stress, mental fatigue and insomnia. In fact, this aromatic plant is able to provide antioxidants that counteract the damage of free radicals, support memory and concentration, relax the mind and soothe it, even in the case of great stress that could cause mood disorders and depression. This is what emerges from a recent scientific research published in the journal Nutrients by a Japanese team (Araki et al, Nutrients, 2020).
The risks of stress
Stress causes chronic fatigue, induced by free radicals, worsens mental performance and can lead to mood and sleep disorders, with a deterioration in the quality of life.
Rosemary, anti-aging properties
Rosemary is rich in antioxidants, such as rosmarinic acid. The intake of rosemary extracts has shown, in previous studies, a neuroprotective and antidepressant effect and an action capable of improving memory and concentration. In fact, extracts of rosemary taken for a month have led in university students, people therefore subjected to great stress, to improvements in cognitive function and memory and an attenuation of anxiety, depression and sleep disorders. Therefore, scientists wondered if rosemary could be a help even in case of work-related stress.
Rosemary, stress and the brain
Two studies were carried out to answer this question. The first was conducted on adults in good health who, however, due to the stress caused by the work they did, all had a mild feeling of chronic fatigue. For a month, study participants were asked to take rosemary extracts. At the end of the period, the volunteers showed an improvement in the state of fatigue, in the ability to memorize and concentrate and also in mood. Hence, rosemary can actually act in times of great stress, bringing benefits to the body and mind. However, the researchers thought to go beyond this study, developing a second study in which the participants all had major mood disorders, caused precisely by stress. The aim was to understand if rosemary could act even in conditions in which stress had significantly worsened mood.
Rosemary, also beneficial in cases of great stress and depression
Scientists recruited 42 adults with mood disorders and depression. For a month, volunteers were asked to take rosemary extracts obtained by extraction in hot water. What emerged was that rosemary was also able to act in these cases, increasing mental energy and improving the quality of sleep. Not only that, anxiety and depression were also improved and attenuated.
Conclusions, perspectives and warnings
The mechanism of action of rosemary extracts has not been clarified by scientists, who only hypothesize a role of rosemary and its antioxidants on the frontal lobe of the brain. Therefore, other studies will follow in order to understand the mechanism of action of rosemary. For the moment, adding rosemary to our preparations, without ever exaggerating, can be a really good idea, not only tasty, but also healthy, capable of recharging our brain with energy and making it more active and relaxed, counteracting anxiety and depression. Do not forget the rosemary herbal tea. Bring a cup of water to a boil, remove it from the heat and add a teaspoon of rosemary needles. Leave to infuse for ten minutes, then filter and drink. Do not take the herbal tea during pregnancy and breastfeeding, ask your doctor for advice if you are taking drugs for blood clotting, blood pressure or blood sugar.