Sage is one of those herbs that just about everyone knows. To some, the thought of sage brings the smell of a delicious herb used to spice some wonderfully starchy foods or meats as a savory delight. Indeed, this delicious herb is a wonderful carminative, easing the digestion of heavy meals as well as adding a wonderful flavor. Others remember being given sage tea with some honey as a child when they had a cough. The aromatic tea is a beautiful way to enjoy the healing benefits of sage. Others may think of sage wisdom, something elders have learned from years of experience through hard work, dedication, remorse, and doubt. This wisdom gained through the years and passed on is thought of as sage; well seasoned. Interestingly enough, sage has even been used to increase cognitive abilities of the elderly who suffer from dementia and Alzheimer’s.
One of the things I love about sage is that it is an herb that is widely found in most kitchens and gardens. Plants in the salvia genus are almost everywhere and can be found in the wild in many differentclimates, making it a widely accessible herb. Indeed it is an herb for “the people.” Most herbs have a tendency to be either warm or cool, hot or cold. However, sage is interesting in the way that different people experience its energetics differently. To some, chewing on a sage leaf cools the mouth, while to others it is warming. It is often used in menopause to treat the all too common night sweats. This is a great example of how sage can be cooling to the body. When a person has a cold and drinks warm sage tea (or another herbal tea with sage honey) it can have a warming effect on the body. Just another example of how sage works so well for most, no matter what their body type or constitution.
So how does sage work for you? Chew on a leaf and see if your mouth feels warm or cool. Drink some warm tea and take note of how your body feels. Now try some cool tea. How does that feel? What about sage honey? How do you feel that working in your body?
Sage is a wonderful herb to experiment with and to really build the ability to greatly appreciate and understand an herb. I challenge you to go online or find a good plant identification book and see if you can find the local Salvia that grows around you. If your local salvia is safe, see how that works compared to Salvia officinalis and take the time to sit down and build a relationship with this wise herbal ally.