Arianna Chatzidakis | Contributing Writer | Thursday, 18 May 2017

This Is Why Rosemary Sales Double During Exam Season

This Is Why Rosemary Sales Double During Exam Season

The Debrief: Sitting an exam? Stock up on this essential oil.

High street health food chain Holland & Barrett have reported a 187% increase in the sales of rosemary essential oil compared to this time last year. If you're wondering why, it's all to do with a study created by Northumbria University, which demonstrated that there is a link between rosemary and memory.

The study showed pupils in a room scented with rosemary performed better in memory tests, achieving an average of 5% to 7% better results. Researcher Mark Moss said that this could be because the human sense of smell is highly sensitive: 'it could be that aromas affect electrical activity in the brain or that pharmacologically active compounds can be absorbed'. 

'My working hypothesis is that when you inhale rosemary its compounds are absorbed in the blood through the lungs and then are sent to the brain where they can actually act on your brain chemistry.'

The theory that rosemary can help to increase memory is one that has been backed up by historical associations. In ancient Greece, students wore garlands of rosemary when taking exams, and the legendary Shakespeare even referenced 'there's rosemary, that's for remembrance', in his play Hamlet.

A spokeswoman for Holland & Barrett has said that after the research about rosemary was published, the food chain 'saw a sharp rise in customer demand. As the exam season continues, we have increased provision in store to meet demand'.

So fellow students, you know what to do - get yourself down to a Holland & Barret immediately, and douse yourself in rosemary oil.

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Tags: Food