Rosemary provides support in cancer prevention

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Rosemary provides support in cancer prevention

Recently, there has been a growing research interest in the rosemary, a common houseplant grown in many parts of the world. Studies aim to review the scientific evidence from all published studies that examined the protective effects of rosemary on colorectal and other cancers. Literature evidence from studies in laboratory subjects and cell cultures demonstrates the anticancer potential of rosemary extract, carnosol, carnosic acid, ursolic acid, and rosmarinic acid.

Something about rosemary herb

Rosemary (R. officinalis) is a widely used herb that originates from the Mediterranean region. It dates back to the ancient Greeks who named the plant for aiding memory and stimulating the brain.

The plant contains an essential oil that is needed for survival and is known to enhance memory.

Rosemary is known to have one of the highest antioxidant properties of any spice and can fight fungus, bacteria, and cancer.

It can be taken in a wide range of ways including:

  • Dust
  • Tea
  • Extracts
  • Oil

Different forms of rosemary can produce different effects. Extracts differ especially based on how the rosemary is extracted and what compounds it is extracted from.

Rosemary can fight these types of cancers

In human ovarian cancer cells, some active constituents of rosemary stopped the growth of cancer cells and killed existing cancer cells.

There is a wide range of data supporting the effectiveness of this wonderful herb against various types of cancer, including:

  • Leukemia
  • Colon
  • Pancreas
  • Mother
  • Prostate
  • ovaries
  • Cervix
  • Bladder
  • Liver
  • Lung

Both rosmarinic acid and rosemary extracts decreased heterocyclic amines (HCAs), which are cancer-causing molecules found in meats such as beef, chicken, pork, and fish.

Rosemary extracts with the highest concentration of carnosic acid were the most effective. In liver cancer cells, carnosic acid decreased cell viability from 83% to 2.5%.

Rosemary and vitamin D in cancer prevention

Carnosic acid and carnosol, compounds derived from the culinary herb rosemary, are antioxidants that help fight cancer, as are the cruciferous plant compounds I3C and DIM. Carnosic acid and carnosol reduce the carcinogenic potential of estrogens by modulating their metabolism in the liver.

In one study, feeding laboratory subjects a diet containing 2% rosemary for three weeks increased beneficial estrogen metabolites by approximately 150%, while inhibiting harmful estrogen metabolites by approximately 50%.

Synergistically with vitamin D, rosemary works as an anticancer

Additional research on these compounds has shown that they work synergistically with vitamin D. Scientists are now avidly investigating vitamin D as one of the most promising nutrients in the fight against cancer.

Vitamin D works as a hormone that affects the immune system and protects against cancer.

Instead of killing cancer cells directly, vitamin D seems to stop cancer by forcing “out of control” cells to differentiate, that is, to look more like normal cells.

New research shows that carnosic acid and carnosol from rosemary synergize with vitamin D, helping to kill cancer cells more effectively. The combination of vitamin D and rosemary compounds represents a new addition to traditional approaches to cancer treatment.


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