May 042008

Rosemary has been a favorite ally of late, not for myself so much as for many clients and family members. It’s a common ingredient in my digestive formulas, especially for those with a sluggish, overtired liver and a cold gut typified by lack of appetite, gas, constipation and bloating. I especially like it combined with Oregon Grape Root for the liver issues, and is additionally helpful in a pattern that often includes excessive, dilute urination from kidney deficiency and probably low blood pressure as well as inability to digest protein/fat efficiently. Other specific indications also include foggy thinking, general feeling of coldness, tiredness and intermittent depression with or without thyroid involvement usually with nervousness or anxiety underneath. There are also sometimes signs of heart weakness accompanying the poor circulation.

Rosmary tincture made from fresh plant in high proof alcohol is very powerful, so my proportions tend to be something like 5 parts Oregon Grape to 1 part Rosemary. If it still seems a bit too stimulating or heating for the individual but is otherwise a good match I’ll adjust it to 2 parts Oregon Grape, 3 parts Burdock root and 1/2 part Rosemary. The taste is lovely and really harmonizes with the other herbs very nicely. Some amount of Lavender can also be added if there are significant signs of anxiety or insomnia, especially when accompanied by headache or confusion.

Some people don’t do so well with Rosemary, often those of excess type constitution who are hot natured, prone to high blood pressure and ruddy colored. Possible signs of incompatibility include roaring in the ears, feeling like your pulse is going to bust out your head when you stand up (high blood pressure), rapid heartbeat, sharp headaches and excessive and uncomfortable flushing. If these symptoms occur either greatly reduce the dosage or cease completely. If the symptoms are unclear, withdraw it and then retest if possible. Rosemary should NOT be used where there are indications of heat, whether from excess or deficiency.

This is one of Loba’s very favorite plants, I think she could live, breathe and swim in it and be very happy. We have Rosemary butter, Rosemary infused olive oil, Rosemary salve, Rosemary tea, Rosemary tincture, Rosemary lotion, Rosemary smudge, Rosemary rubbed meat and all manner of other Rosemary flavored dishes and body products. Thankfully, Rosemary is a common ornamental and culinary garden plant in NM and can be gathered in most villages and cities. This is good, because it’s cold enough in the canyon that our Rosemaries tend to struggles and grow very very very slowly.

Rosemary has myriad other uses than the few I’ve mentioned and I’ll be sure to writing about more of them in the future. Perhaps my own favorite quality of this plant is its peaceful, gentle presence and the gorgeous purple flowers that unfold from its resinous leaves. Mmm, and the warm scent that is both reassuring and alluring, delicate and full.  Yum!

  2 Responses to “The Warm Heart of Rosemary”

  1. struck me looking at your picture how much rosemary seems to be brush like – clearing the way for direction to enter. it very much seems to assert a presence of being ‘on its own terms’, giving a really powerful forceful upward pull and supprting itself well on its own growth. the rosemary in my back yard seems touch as old boot, highly consistent and survivable!

  2. […] Anima Healing Arts blog entry on Rosemary […]

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