Feeling forgetful? Why rosemary oil could boost your memory

Caroline Cassidy

Ever struggled to remember the name of a once-close friend, or forgotten to send that all-important birthday card? Well, try filling your home with the gentle aroma of rosemary and you could find your forgetfulness becomes a thing of the past.

Rosemary essential oil boosts memory
Rosemary essential oil boosts memory

Pic: Corbis

A new study has revealed that essential oil of the herb has a chemical influence on the body that boosts memory.

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Rosemary has long been linked to improved memory - the ancient Egyptians used the herb at weddings and funerals in a bit to boost both memory and fidelity.

Researchers divided a group of 66 participants into two groups and asked each to wait in a different room. The volunteers then completed a series of memory tests, and those that had enjoyed a rosemary-scented waiting room performed better in all the tests.

According to The Telegraph, Dr Mark Moss, who led the study, said: "We wanted to build on our previous research that indicated rosemary aroma improved long-term memory and mental arithmetic.

"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.

The researchers, who will present their findings at the British Psychological Society's annual conference today, now plan to explore whether the essential oil could improve the lives of older people with memory impairments.
Jemma McCready, an intern who worked on the study, said: "Remembering when and where to go and for what reasons underpins everything we do, and we all suffer minor failings that can be frustrating and sometimes dangerous.

"Further research is needed to investigate if this treatment is useful for older adults who have experienced memory decline."

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