10 Ways Rosemary Benefits Your Health

We love it in our recipes, but did you know that rosemary benefits your health, too?

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Woman gathers fresh rosemary herb in the garden; Shutterstock ID 213917086; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOH
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Freshens Breath

Since we know and love rosemary for its smell, it’s no surprise it’s used to combat halitosis. If you can’t get your hands on a breath mint, try chewing on some rosemary in the meantime.

Here are some other natural bad breath remedies.

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rosemary tea; Shutterstock ID 590168993; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOH

Improves Digestion

The oils in rosemary are very beneficial for the digestive tract. Rosemary can soothe heartburn and ease intestinal gas and bloating. This is because rosemary is an anti-inflammatory, and inflammation is a common cause of an upset stomach. We think it’s worth a try!

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Cosmetic clay facial mask, rosemary oil and herbs, lemon. Body wrap domestic treatment. Top view. ; Shutterstock ID 404158192; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOH
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Improves Skin Elasticity

Rosemary is a great at-home remedy for wrinkles. It works to improve and restore your skin’s elasticity. By tightening your skin, wrinkles seem to disappear. Make a DIY wrinkle-removing facial toner by combining 3/4 cup water, 1 spring of rosemary and 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Apply the toner using a soft cloth after washing your face, morning and night. Rosemary can also help heal sunburns, shrinks your pores and removes excess oil from skin.

Try 20 of our best foods for healthy skin.

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Dried rosemary with fresh rosemary twigs. Top view; Shutterstock ID 1199260477; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOH

Natural Pain Reliever

Have you run out of aspirin? Don’t sweat it—if you’ve got any rosemary in the cupboard, it could serve as a replacement. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, rosemary is known as a cure for headaches. Studies have shown that rosemary might even be stronger than acetaminophen.

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Senior woman in blue polka-dotted dress and straw hat sitting in her garden and enjoying the intense fragrance of her home grown rosemary; Shutterstock ID 629103527; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOH

Improves Memory

It was William Shakespeare who made this herb famous. In Hamlet, Ophelia claims that “rosemary is for remembrance,” and she was right! It’s been proven to improve cognitive function and memory by up to 75%. You don’t even have to dose yourself with it—simply smelling it is said to prevent memory loss. Try it out in one of our DIY stovetop room scents.

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Boost Immune System

Is there anything this herb can’t do? On top of improving memory and freshening breath, it also boosts your immune health. It improves blood circulation, prevents the deterioration of eyesight and has been used to slow the growth of cancerous tumors. Remember rosemary is powerful, so make sure to keep your doses low.

Did you know your immune system sees junk food as a virus?

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Rosemary essential oil and fresh rosemary ; Shutterstock ID 552134410; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOH
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Eliminates Dandruff

You’ll find rosemary as an ingredient in plenty of dandruff shampoos, and there’s a good reason for it! It has antibacterial properties that strip away all the dry skin collecting on your scalp. A hair mask made from the herb can stop the overproduction of oils (which causes hair loss) and lose the itch.

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Works as Insect Repellent

Mosquitoes are a nightmare in the summer, but you don’t have to brave the bites to get to the store for spray. You can make it with ingredients around your kitchen, one of those being rosemary. Combine a cup of dried rosemary and a quart of boiling water, and you’re a mosquito’s worst enemy. (AND you’ll smell good!)

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Makes Hair Thicker

Plenty of oils can do wonders for your hair. Mayonnaise smooths out frizz and leaves it silky, but rosemary has a different use. Rosemary irritates skin, which, in the case of your scalp, is a good thing. Irritated skin means more blood circulation, and this can lead to thicker and faster hair growth.

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Relieves Symptoms of Arthritis

We mentioned rosemary works as a cure for headaches but, as an anti-inflammatory, it’s also great for muscle pain and joint health. Chronic arthritis can be soothed by a regular low dose of rosemary. It’s important not to take too much, because higher than recommended doses this powerful herb can cause serious side effects.

Laurie Dixon
Having a passion for writing her whole life, Laurie joined the Taste of Home team to bring together her two favorite things—creative writing and food. She spends most of her time playing with her dog, drafting up short stories and, of course, trying out new recipes.