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Sunday, December 21, 2008


If there is such a thing as comfort herb like there is comfort food, then rosemary must be it. How to describe the fragrance that comes off a sprig of rosemary with its essential oils drawn to the surface by the caress of sunshine and the kisses of the breeze. Unlike thyme, which clambers and falls in unruly heaps, rosemary grows in neat little bushes and stays resolutely inside its pot. If treated as it wants to be treated, rosemary rewards the gardener with new shoots everyday that broaden into fat leaves glistening with microscopic droplets of oil. Then, all a human need do is to brush the leaves lightly with a loving hand and the rosemary will impart its perfume willingly to that soft touch. 

It seems that these oils that humans so prize from the rosemary, are actually waste products produced by the plant's metabolism. In theory, oxygen is a waste product of plant metabolism too... and essential to human life! Rosemary oils are potent anti-fungal agents. As such, it may be used in a variety of ways to enhance human health. People with oily scalp tend to lose hair because a type of fungus that feeds on hair oil colonizes the scalp and puts many hair follicles out of active duty. For this reason, rosemary has been used in treatments for balding. A good wash with rosemary tea or diluted rosemary oil invigorates the scalp by killing the fungus that all have, but few are aware of.

Others are plagued with flatulence that arises specifically because of an overgrowth of the fungus called "candida albicans". The condition is named candidiasis. The symptoms are embarassing and uncomfortable, for no one likes to feel like one is breathing from the wrong aperture, but the cure is as simple as rosemary tea, 3 times a day until symptoms subside. It helps to eat yoghurt with live cultures at the same time. You see, yeast and bacteria all reside in our digestive tract. After a long course of antibiotics, the good bacteria in our gut, that competes for sugars with the yeast, get killed. Then the balance in our digestive system goes out of whack. The yeast get the run of the place and they multiply quickly. We all know that as yeast consumes sugars, carbon dioxide is given off - hence the embarassing flatulence. And not only is there flatulence, but the body begins to feel extremely tired as the toxins released by the yeast circulates in our bodies. No, no... too much yeast is no good for us. 

What is most unfortunate is that in women, the yeast that overgrows in the digestive tract, sometimes makes it into the vaginal tract. This leads to extremely uncomfortable sensations. Again, a good douche with rosemary tea can clear the fungal infection. Enter rosemary tea and a good dollop of unsweetened yoghurt 3 times a day, to be taken after a long course of antibiotic. This way, candidiasis is warded off even before it starts.

But the best use I make of rosemary tea is to feed a hungry family addicted to spaghetti bolognaise. You will be amazed at the fragrance of spaghetti sauce that is perfumed with a few sprigs of rosemary.


justallofone said...

that's a nice photo.
and a healthy rosemary!

Blur Ting said...

I have a rosemary growing in my patio too and each time I water the plant, a wonderful smell wafts through the whole garden :-)