Salvia officinalis (Sage Leaf, Common Sage, Garden Sage, Black Sage)

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GENERIC NAME: Salvia officinalis

BRAND NAME: Sage Leaf, Common Sage, Garden Sage, Black Sage

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Sage leaf is a spice that is used as herbal supplement for several conditions. The mechanism of action of Sage leaf is not known. It is believed to provide therapeutic effect through beta-thujone, which is a major component of Sage leaf oil extract.



PREPARATIONS: Sage leaf is available in tablets, tincture, cream and tea forms.

STORAGE: Due to multiple manufacturers making Sage leaf, storage requirements may vary based on manufacturer practices.

PRESCRIBED FOR: Sage leaf is used for Alzheimer's disease, genital herpes, cough and throat infection, and to relieve stomach cramps.


  • Tincture: Take 1/8 to 1/2 teaspoon of dried sage leaves in a sip of water up to two times a day.
  • Herbal Tea: Drink several cups of sage tea every day for several weeks.
  • Gargle or take small sips of sage tea: Gargle or drink throughout the day as needed.
  • Alzheimer's disease: Take up to 1 gram of sage by mouth per day.
  • Genital herpes: Apply 23 mg per day of sage extract and rhubarb extract cream to affected areas every 2 to 4 hours for 10 to 14 days.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Sage leaf should be used with caution with medications that cause sedation, due to increased sedative effects.

PREGNANCY: There are no adequate studies done on Sage leaf to determine safe and effective use in pregnant women.

NURSING MOTHERS: It is not known whether Sage leaf enters breast milk; therefore, it is best to be cautious before using in nursing mothers.

SIDE EFFECTS: Side effects of Sage leaf are restlessness, headache, irritability, stomach upset, and dizziness.

REFERENCE: MedscapeReference. Sage (Harbs/Suppl) - common sage, culinary sage, garden sage, meadow sage, salvia officinalis, true sage.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/25/2014

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