Sage tea comes from the leaves of the common sage plant, which is related to mint.
People often use sage as a seasoning, but it’s also been used for health reasons for a long time. Its tea might be perfect for our health, but more studies are needed to confirm this.
Below are 9 potential benefits and reasons to drink sage tea.
1. Sage tea is rich in anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds
Sage tea contains a variety of potent plant compounds.
In particular, the antioxidants in this help neutralize free radicals. Too many free radicals can lead to chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and cancer.
Sage tea is exceptionally high in rosmarinic acid. Animal and test-tube studies have shown that this antioxidant provides numerous benefits, such as decreased inflammation and blood sugar levels.
While inflammation is a natural bodily response, chronic inflammation can increase your risk of illness.
Sage likewise provides a fair amount of vitamin K, which is essential for bone health, circulation, and proper blood clotting.
Moreover, this tea boasts several other health-promoting compounds, including carnosol and camphor.
In a mouse study, sage extract significantly increased the levels of anti-inflammatory compounds circulating in the blood while decreasing the levels of inflammatory compounds.
Sage tea’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects may be responsible for many of its purported benefits, but more human research is necessary.
Summary: Sage tea contains several anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds, including rosmarinic acid, camphor, and carnosol, to which many of its benefits are attributed.
2. Sage tea may promote healthy skin and wound healing
Sage is a common ingredient in cosmetics that is applied topically as a natural skin care remedy.
It’s possible that drinking its tea provides some of the same benefits.
In a test-tube study on mouse skin cells, camphor — one of sage’s key compounds — was found to promote healthy skin-cell growth, slow signs of aging, and decrease wrinkle formation.
In addition, an animal study associated this herb’s carnosol and carnosic acid with helping treat sun-related skin damage and other inflammatory skin problems.
Other animal studies show that sage extract helps heal cold sores and speeds wound healing.
Moreover, test-tube studies have demonstrated that its extract killed certain harmful bacteria and fungi that could damage your skin.
Summary: Sage contains camphor and carnosol, which can help prevent skin damage. It may also accelerate wound healing and kill harmful bacteria and fungi.
3. Sage tea promotes oral health
Sage is one of the most popular herbs in dentistry, as it targets pain, inflammation, and bad breath and exerts antibacterial and wound-healing properties.
In fact, gargling sage tea is often recommended as a remedy for mouth wounds and sore throats.
These oral benefits are often attributed to the powerful antioxidant rosmarinic acid.
Furthermore, sage is added to some mouthwashes because of its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activity.
Summary: Sage may relieve oral pain, inflammation, and bad breath. It has several dental applications due to its antibacterial and wound-healing benefits.
4. Sage tea may have anticancer properties
There is some evidence that sage tea may help fight cancer cells.
It contains several anticancer compounds, including carnosol, camphor, and rosmarinic acid. In particular, animal and test-tube studies reveal that carnosol can kill several types of cancer cells without affecting healthy cells.
In a study in over 500 people, sage and chamomile teas were linked to a decreased risk of thyroid cancer.
Meanwhile, in a test-tube study, sage tea helped prevent genetic changes that cause colon cancer cell formation.
Although these results are promising, more human research is necessary.
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Summary: In test-tube studies, sage tea and its compounds have demonstrated several cancer-fighting effects. However, more studies in humans are needed.
5. Sage tea improves blood sugar control
Sage, which is a frequent ingredient in alternative blood sugar medications, may help improve blood sugar levels and prevent or treat type 2 diabetes.
A 2-month study in 105 adults with type 2 diabetes found supplementing with 500 mg of sage extract 3 times daily improved fasting blood sugar, post-meal blood sugar, and hemoglobin A1c — a measure of average blood sugar levels over the previous 3 months.
Meanwhile, a mouse study determined that replacing water with sage tea reduced fasting blood sugar levels.
Furthermore, a test-tube study suggested that sage behaves similarly to insulin — a hormone that helps manage blood sugar levels — by moving sugar in your blood into your cells for storage, thus lowering levels of this marker.
Summary: Sage tea may help prevent or treat type 2 diabetes by reducing blood sugar levels.
6. Sage tea may promote brain health and improve mood
Sage is widely used in alternative medicine to boost mood, improve memory, and help prevent brain-related disorders like Alzheimer’s. Scientific research backs many of these uses.
Alzheimer’s progresses due to amyloid plaques that form in the brain. Several test-tube and animal studies indicate that sage and rosmarinic acid may help prevent the formation of these plaques.
In addition, multiple human studies note that sage extracts improve memory, brain function, mood, and focus.
One study in 135 adults found that simply smelling the aroma of this herb boosted memory and mood, compared with a control group.
Sage may also relieve pain, but more research is needed on its effects on the brain and nervous system.
Summary: Sage tea may slow the development of Alzheimer’s disease and improve mood and memory. However, more research is needed.
7. Sage tea may support women’s health
Sage may also provide some unique benefits for women.
Suggested read: 12 health benefits and uses of sage
In the Middle East, pregnant women commonly use sage to treat digestive symptoms like nausea, a common problem early in pregnancy.
Historically, sage has also been utilized as a natural way to reduce breastmilk production in women who are weaning or have an overabundant supply.
However, there is little research to support either of these traditional uses.
Yet, research demonstrates that sage helps reduce hot flashes. An 8-week study in 71 menopausal women found that taking a daily tablet containing fresh sage reduced the severity and frequency of hot flashes by 64%.
Summary: Sage is sometimes used to treat nausea in pregnant women and reduce breastmilk production in women who are weaning or have an overabundant supply. However, scant research supports these uses. Yet, it may reduce hot flashes in menopausal women.
8. Sage tea may boost heart health
Some research indicates that sage may help improve cholesterol and triglyceride levels, potentially decreasing your risk of heart disease.
In a small, 4-week study in 6 women, drinking 10 ounces (300 ml) of sage tea twice daily resulted in 16% lower total cholesterol, 20% lower LDL (bad) cholesterol, and 38% higher HDL (good) cholesterol.
A 2-month study in 105 people with type 2 diabetes on cholesterol-lowering drugs found that those who took 500 mg of sage extract 3 times daily had healthier levels of triglycerides and all cholesterol markers, compared with those in the control group.
All the same, more research is needed.
Summary: Sage tea may decrease your risk of heart disease by improving your triglyceride and cholesterol levels, though further studies are necessary.
9. Sage tea is easy to add to your diet
Sage tea is easy to add to your diet, as you can purchase tea bags online or at most grocery stores.
You can also make this aromatic beverage at home with the following ingredients:
- 1 tablespoon (15 grams) of fresh or 1 teaspoon (4 grams) of dried sage
- 1 cup (240 ml) of water
- sweetener to taste
- fresh lemon juice (optional)
Simply bring the water to a boil, then add the sage and steep for about 5 minutes. Strain to remove the leaves before adding your preferred sweetener and lemon juice to taste.
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This drink is enjoyable hot or cold.
Summary: Sage tea can be purchased online or at grocery stores. You can also make it yourself using fresh or dried sage.
Precautions and potential side effects of sage tea
Note that much of the research on sage has been conducted in animals and test tubes and used highly concentrated extracts. While sage tea may provide some of the same benefits, its effects may not be as pronounced. In addition, more human studies are needed.
This beverage may also have a few downsides.
Sage contains a compound called thujone, which provides its strong aroma but can be toxic in high doses.
Drinking vast amounts of sage tea — or consuming this herb in other forms — over an extended period may cause heart problems, seizures, vomiting, and kidney damage if you ingest more than 3–7 grams of thujone daily.
Yet, sage tea only contains 4–11 mg of this compound per 4 cups (1 liter), so you can safely drink several cups daily with little to no risk of thujone toxicity.
At the same time, you should avoid ingesting sage essential oil or adding it to your tea, as just 12 drops can be toxic.
Sage tea is safe overall in normal amounts, but if you have any concerns, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider.
Summary: Sage tea contains thujone, which can be toxic in high doses. While you should not drink large amounts of this tea for extended periods, drinking a few mugs daily is likely safe.
Sage tea has lots of good stuff, like antioxidants.
It might help your skin, mouth, and brain. It can also reduce the chance of getting type 2 diabetes and heart issues. But, we still need more research on this.
You can easily make sage tea with fresh or dried leaves. So, if you’re using sage in your food, think about making some tea too.