Nutritionists say rosemary may be the key to living longer
01/09/2019 // Zoey Sky // Views

According to a study, rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is more than an aromatic and flavorful herb. Researchers believe that the frequent use of the herb may be one of the main reasons why most of the residents of a town in Italy live up to 100 years old.

The study is a collaboration between researchers from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and the University of Rome La Sapienza.

Is rosemary the key to longevity?

To date, there are many supposed ways to live longer, such as taking yoga classes or going on vacations regularly. However, the results of the study seems to be closing in on one of the most effective ways to guarantee one's longevity.

For the study, researchers observed Acciaroli, a tiny village in Italy. At least 300 people who are around 100 years old reside in the village, and this figure accounts for an estimated 45 percent of the town's total population.

In comparison, the average life expectancy in Italy is 78.8 years old.

The researchers acknowledged that other factors may contribute to the impressive number of centenarians in the area, and these include:

  • Access to fresh air
  • Acciaroli's remote location
  • Lots of hiking and walking opportunities

However, some experts believe that the generous use of rosemary in the region's cuisine could be the main reason for the remarkable longevity of the village's elderly population. This is worth considering, especially since Acciaroli mostly follows a Mediterranean diet. Rosemary is native to the Mediterranean, and it is often used to season different dishes like casseroles, salads, soups, and stews. (Related: 8 Natural Healing Benefits of Rosemary.)


Jaclyn London, the Nutrition Director at the Good Housekeeping Instituteexplained that rosemary is commonly used in the Mediterranean diet. It can be used to cook savory dishes, and it is even used to make certain desserts. She added, "There is lots of research that the plant-based, whole-foods approach is optimal for weight loss, chronic disease prevention, and longevity."

Even if you're not an expert in the kitchen, you can easily incorporate rosemary into your cooking. London suggests that rosemary can be added to olive oil, white fish, or other dishes.

She concluded, "Herbs and spices in general can also help enhance flavor without adding extra salt, so they're ideal for anyone at risk for cardiovascular disease."

Tips for cooking with rosemary

To prepare rosemary, rinse fresh sprigs of the herb under cold running water then pat dry. When following a recipe that requires whole rosemary leaves, remove them from the woody stems. You can also add whole rosemary sprigs if you're making meat dishes or savory stews.

To store rosemary, put the sprigs in a plastic food storage bag with a damp paper towel. Fresh rosemary will keep for at least one week in the fridge.

Recipe for garlic and rosemary butter

This garlic and rosemary butter can be used as a topping for steak, a spread, or as vegetable butter. Alternatively, you can add it to baked potatoes or tossed pasta.


  • 2 medium cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon (tsp) fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves (finely chopped)
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) butter (room temperature)


  1. Chop the garlic cloves, then mash them with the wide side of a chef's knife. You can also use a mortar and pestle.
  2. Take a small bowl, then combine the garlic with the fresh lemon juice and at least one teaspoon of kosher salt.
  3. Add 1/2 teaspoon of finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves, then mix well.
  4. Add the room temperature butter and mash with a fork until the ingredients are thoroughly blended.
  5. Put the butter on a sheet of wax paper, then shape it into a log. Wrap the garlic and rosemary butter well, then refrigerate it until chilled.
  6. Refrigerate or freeze the butter until you're ready to use it.

You can read more articles about rosemary and other healthy foods and herbs that can help maintain your overall health at

Sources include:

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