The name for sage comes from the Latin word that means “to save”. This evergreen herb is one of the oldest recorded in folk and native medicines, with uses from aiding digestion to helping with oral health. With a spicy scent, there are several proven benefits and uses of sage essential oil that you may not be familiar with.

Are Sage and Clary Sage Essential Oil the Same?

Though they are related through the same evergreen shrub family, they are different from each other, primarily through the constituents that can be distilled from the plant.

Sage is primarily comprised of thujone, a chemical that has been used to aid in digestion. Clary sage contains mostly linalool, which gives it the ability to affect mood and repel insects.

Both oils are similar in color, but whereas sage has a strong, spicy scent clary sage is milder and nuttier. When considering whether to use clary sage vs. sage, sage may cause sensitivities in some people, but clary sage tends towards a milder nature.

6 Proven Benefits and Uses of Sage Essential Oil

1. Help Control Cholesterol

With the advent of research into the connection between cholesterol levels and risk for heart disease and strokes, the number of people who are prescribed medications to control cholesterol levels has risen precipitously. While these medications work to lower types of cholesterol, they also come with their own laundry list of side effects. Doctors continually look to increase the good cholesterol in the body while lowering the bad. Research into essential oils such as sage has revealed an ability to help reduce the amount of harmful cholesterol found in the blood and support the good cholesterol needed for optimum health. (1)

2. Kill Molds and Bacteria

Plants contain chemicals that help them thrive against molds, bacteria, and fungi that could damage them. These chemicals are then transferred to their essential oils and can be very beneficial to humans in turn. Sage has been shown to be effective against molds and bacteria, including Alternaria, a fungus that grows indoors and is known for causing hay fever or exacerbating asthma symptoms. This fungus can also cause life-threatening infections in people who are immunocompromised. (2)

Diffuse sage throughout the house, especially if you suffer from seasonal allergies or have a medical condition that weakens your immune system. This may prevent further illness.

3. Improve Dental Health

Most modern diets include foods that are high in sugar, leading to dental issues such as gingivitis, cavities, and other oral diseases. The bacteria and fungi that live in the mouth thrive in this high sugar environment. This makes dental health an extremely important part of your daily routines. Essential oils have been used for centuries in order to keep the mouth and teeth healthy. Sage has been found to prevent the adhesion of germs such as streptococcus and candida and reduce their population in the mouth. Overgrowth of these germs can lead to cavities and gum disease. (3)

Add 1-2 drops of sage to a tablespoon of sesame or coconut oil and swish for up to a minute. Both oils may help remove the material from your teeth as well as reducing the population that remains. Do not swallow this oil.

4. Ease Menopausal Symptoms

Unfortunately, all women move through the phases of life, from puberty to adulthood and on to menopause, when our bodies stop producing the hormones required for reproduction. This condition appears with its own set of sometimes uncomfortable side effects such as night sweats, interrupted sleep, and mood swings. Sage has been shown to contain flavonoids that mimic hormones such as estrogen and may help to balance them as they decline. This may lead to lessened symptoms. (4)

Add 1-2 drops to a carrier oil and apply to the abdomen to help regulate the decline of reproductive hormones. Diffusing in your home may also help reduce the frequency and duration of side effects such as hot flashes.

5. Increase Insulin Sensitivity

When you eat something, your body responds by creating insulin. This hormone is what moves sugar in the blood across the cell membrane so your body can utilize the energy. People who have disorders such as insulin resistance have cells that don’t respond properly to insulin. This leads to the buildup of glucose in the blood and further resistance. This cycle can lead to prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes, necessitating medication to help control your blood sugar. Sage essential oil has been found to increase the insulin sensitivity of cells, which leads to a decrease in blood glucose. It may even be as effective as some prescribed medications. (5)

Apply a mix of sage and carrier oil to the abdomen after eating to help with the production and use of insulin in the body. This may also help prevent the afternoon crash that occurs after lunch as your body may utilize blood sugar more effectively.

6. Protect Memory and Cognitive Function

Memory function declines with not only age but also with certain diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Daily stress and anxiety can lead to impaired memory as well. Essential oils like sage have been used in ancient folk medicine to help improve focus and memory. Modern research has shown that the chemicals in sage prevent the breakdown of chemicals used in the formation and recollection of memories. This chemical is affected by disease and shows that sage may be effective in helping to slow the progression of mental diseases. (6)

Diffuse sage with oils such as rosemary to help improve your memory and recollection. This may be useful during deadlines or when studying as well.

My Experience with Sage Essential Oil

The standard American diet is not very forgiving on my teeth. Even after switching to diet sodas to reduce my sugar intake, the carbonation continued to eat at my enamel. My dentist was becoming a very rich man, despite the fact that I brushed my teeth twice a day.

I’m also not a huge fan of most mouthwashes. As much as I love peppermint, I don’t like the overpowering burn and artificial flavor that remains after rinsing my teeth. Even alcohol-free versions don’t have a taste that I can stand for more than a couple trials.

Research into alternatives for oral health led me to a practice called oil pulling. Before the advent of modern dental care such as toothbrushes and pastes, ancient cultures were swishing with plant-based oils to help keep their teeth healthy. Studies have even shown the using oils like coconut or sesame had reduced bacteria on their teeth. (7)

I also started adding 1-2 drops of sage oil to my coconut oil for a nightly swish. It may not leave behind any minty freshness but it has helped control my bad breath and reduced the amount of plaque on my teeth. I can see a visible reduction of plaque, especially at the gum line.

My dentist may also be a little disappointed that I am no longer helping to put his kids through college.

Recommended Sage Essential Oil Based Products

1. Edens Garden French Lavender Sage Coconut Wax Candle

Edens Garden French Lavender Sage Coconut Wax Candle, All Natural & Made With Essential Oils...
  • The French Lavender Sage Candle is a relaxing stroll at twilight, able...
  • Unwind and find your emotional center with the help of the French...

If you prefer candles to diffusers, this candle may be a great way to enjoy the scent of sage in your home. Made of coconut wax and is formulated for long burning times. Sage alone can be a strong scent but pairs well with light florals such as lavender. The lavender can help you relax while the sage improves your focus and memory. This candle may be ideal to burn as you study or work on completing your deadlines at work.

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2. Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Lemon Sage Thickening Shampoo and Conditioner Set

Many products formulated for use on the body have moved towards using more plant-based ingredients. This set for the hair incorporates tea tree, lemon, and sage oils to help keep hair healthy without adding further chemicals. These oils are known to improve scalp quality by controlling oil and bacteria that may lead to inactive hair follicles. This shampoo and condition may help improve the condition of your hair, without chemicals that may lead to overproduction of oil or damage already fragile hair.

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Caution of Sage Essential Oil

  • Always use 100% therapeutic grade essential oil to prevent any sensitivities.
  • Do not use sage while drinking alcohol as this may increase intoxication.
  • Pregnant women should not use sage as the constituent thujone has been used to stimulate menstruation and may lead to miscarriage.
  • Sage may stimulate seizures in people with epilepsy.
  • Always dilute with water or carrier oil to prevent skin irritation.
  • Do not use topically if you suffer from skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis.
  • Use with a doctor’s supervision if you are diabetic and currently taking medication for controlling your blood sugar. Sage may lower blood sugar, causing a hypoglycemic episode.

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed learning about the benefits of sage essential oil. Please be sure to share this information with anyone who may be looking for more natural supplements to ease symptoms of common medical conditions such as high blood sugar or cholesterol. This may be the oil they need to improve their quality of life without the addition of further chemicals.