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The oil is taken from the heartwood of the plant.
Regarded as sacred in many civilisations, rosemary has variously been used for driving away evil spirits, as a fumigant, as protection against plague, at weddings, feasts and funerals -- and as both a remembrance and an aid to joyful memories.
The ancients also used rosemary as a respiratory ailment treatment and as sacred incense in some religious ceremonies. Sprigs of rosemary have been found in Egyptian Tombs (3000 BC.) It was believed that placing a sprig of rosemary under a pillow before sleep would repel nightmares, and if placed outside the home it would repel witches.
The folklore developed from this practice says the woman rules the household in homes and gardens where rosemary grows abundantly. By the 16th century this became a bone of contention and men were known to rip up rosemary bushes to show that they ruled the roost.
• Associated with the third eye (brow chakra), rosemary is a psychic protector with therapeutic properties.
• Antiseptic, astringent and antioxidant, rosemary is said to relieve rheumatic and muscle pain, relax nerves, improve digestion and appetite and increase sweating.
• Rosemary's invigorating fragrance stimulates alertness and strength in the senses. It encourages clarity and creativity, rekindles energies and nourishes intuition through a heightened sensitivity to situations and surroundings. Rosemary helps prepare the body and mind for meditation and prayer.
• Rosemary oil has a pronounced action on the brain and the central nervous system. It is thought to be wonderful for clearing the mind, fostering mental awareness and improving the memory.
• The benefits of rosemary essential oil in treating respiratory problems are unmatched. The oil is used in treating respiratory allergies, the common cold, sore throat and flu.
• Since rosemary oil is antiseptic, it is effective for respiratory infections as well. The oil is antispasmodic and is used in bronchial asthma.
• As an ingredient in a massage oil, compress or bath, rosemary essential oil is considered excellent for increasing poor circulation and easing muscle and rheumatic pain. It is especially penetrating when used in a liniment.
• Added to shampoos, rosemary has a pronounced positive effect on the health of the hair and scalp. It increases the circulation to the scalp and is therefore also effective for promoting hair growth.
• The diuretic properties of rosemary oil are useful with reducing water retention during menstruation, and also with obesity and cellulite.
The oil is used in room fresheners, candles and perfumes due to its aroma. When inhaled, it brings mental energy and also clears the respiratory tract. Spray a mixture of rosemary essential oil and water to remove bad odor from a room.