Hindu sage refers to a plant that is a member of the mint family. Its leaves are a silvery color and many varieties are known for their pleasant fragrance. There are between 700 and 900 species of perennials, annuals, and shrubs that are referred to as sage. Sage flowers come in several shades of blue, red and yellow. Some varieties produce a white blossom.
Uses for Hindu Sage
Hindu sage is thought to have originated in Central and Southwestern Asia. Some varieties of sage are grown as herbs, while other ones are used in gardens as ornamental plants. When sage is being grown as an ornamental plant, it is referred to as Salvia.
Sage Used as an Herb
Sage has been grown in Europe since the Middle Ages. The word Salvia is derived from the Latin word salvere which when translated means "to heal." In ancient Greece, sage was used to treat many ailments, including ulcers, consumption, and snake bite.
The Romans devised an elaborate ceremony, including a sacrifice of food, to be performed when harvesting sage. The person gathering the sage would use a special knife to cut it. The knife would not be made with iron, since iron is known to react with sage. In addition, he would need to wear clean clothes and wash his feet before starting the process.
Once the sage was harvested, it would be used as a toothpaste for cleaning teeth. This herb was also thought to increase memory, sharpen the senses, and improve a person's intelligence.
Sage was also an important herb in ancient China. When merchants from Holland were trading with the Chinese in the 17th century, they found the natives willing to trade three chests of Chinese tea for one chest of sage.
Sage Used for Medicinal Purposes
When common sage is made into a (cold) tea, it will stop a person from sweating. If you serve sage tea hot, it will make the individual start sweating. Women who want to start or stop nursing their babies can use sage tea: drink it cold to shut down milk production or heat it when you want to help the milk let down. White sage is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and can be consumed in the form of a tea. When dissolved in alcohol, it has a pleasant fragrance and has been used for perfume.
A tea made from aromatic sage can be used to stop coughs. Non-aromatic species are also known to be anti-inflammatories, and will provide at least some measure of relief from an infection or inflammation.
Red sage is used by practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine. When a laxative is needed, chia sage seeds can be used in the same way that linseed and Psyllium seeds are used for this purpose.
Sage is used by herbalists to treat a number of ailments, including rheumatism and abnormal menstrual bleeding.
Sage as a Gargle
To use sage to treat an inflamed mouth, sore throat, or gingivitis, take 150 ml of boiling water and add three grams of sage leaf. Let it sit for three minutes and then allow the mixture to cool. Gargle with the mouthwash several times per day until symptoms subside.
If you want to use sage internally, you need to take five ml of sage extract and add it to a glass of water. This treatment should be taken three times per day.
Make Space for Hindu Sage in Your Garden
With so many uses, it might be worth allocating space to grow this herb in your garden. Check out your local nursery to see if plants or seeds are available.