Can Rosemary Enhance Memory?

We were just finishing off a break during one of my workshops when a student came into the room and remarked, “The perfume worn by the receptionist at the front desk reminds me of my grade 2 teacher.” Scent, from many sources, has long been associated with memory. It stimulates the olfactory nerve in the nose, which could effect the way the brain functions. A recent study done on healthy adults specifically answers the question “Can rosemary enhance memory?

Can Rosemary Enhance Memory?

Can rosemary improve memory? A number of scents have long been associated with improved memory.

Can rosemary improve memory? A number of scents have long been associated with improved memory.

Participants were tasked various tests to assess their memory functions, including finding hidden objects and passing specified objects to researchers at a particular time.

The results, presented at the British Psychological Society’s annual conference in Harrogate, showed that participants in the rosemary-scented room performed better on the prospective memory tasks than those in the room with no smell.

“We wanted to build on our previous research that indicated rosemary aroma improved long-term memory and mental arithmetic,” said author Dr Mark Moss.

“In this study we focused on prospective memory, which involves the ability to remember events that will occur in the future and to remember to complete tasks at particular times. This is critical for everyday functioning. For example, when someone needs to remember to post a birthday card or to take medication at a particular time.”

Read more about the University of Northumbria study here.

Can rosemary enhance memory? It appears that it does. What can we do to safely benefit from the aroma of essential rosemary oil? Share your ideas in the comment box below.

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