Rosemary oil, a natural stimulant for the late hours
If you have to work or study late into the night again, inhaling rosemary oil will not only help you stay awake but will also increase your ability to absorb information. This is shown in a human study published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice.
Ahmad Nasiri and Masoomeh Mo'tamed Boroomand, two researchers from Birjand University of Medical Sciences in Iran, divided 80 nurses working night shifts into 2 groups. They gave the subjects in one group a face mask with gauze on which they had dropped a drop of rosemary oil.
The subjects in the other group were given a mask with a drop of water.
After 10 minutes, the subjects removed the gauze, and 15 minutes later they put on another gauze. In this way they wanted to prevent the subjects from becoming insensitive to the stimulus of the rosemary oil. The researchers repeated this cycle for 2 hours.
Before and after that period, the subjects had to rate their alertness / sleepiness between 1 and 9. 1 stands for 'extremely awake', 5 for 'neither awake nor sleepy' and 9 for 'extremely sleepy'.
Rosemary oil makes the test subjects more alert.
Based on the scientific literature, the researchers suspect that constituents of rosemary oil, such as alpha-pinene, block enzymes in the brain that inhibit acetylcholine.
As a result, inhaling rosemary oil can activate the autonomic nervous system. That is the part of the nervous system that your willpower does not directly affect.
The result of activation of the autonomic nervous system is that the heart rate and blood pressure increase, and you feel better and more alert. At the same time, your brain's ability to absorb information increases.
Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2021 Jan 27;43:101326.
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