Clary Sage Essential Oil For Asthma
As a respiratory therapist and an asthma educator, I was intrigued when I read on other blogs about the use of Clary Sage essential oil for asthma.
I set out to search for scientific research to back up the claims I read. This is what I found.
This is just one of the claims I found on the internet, “Clary sage can help relax the bronchial tubes, resulting in better breathing. It is also effective for those suffering from respiratory infections”.
Other claims I saw were that the antispasmodic effects of Clary Sage could help you breath better when you are having an asthma attack.
The Results Of My Search
I conducted a search of the literature to see if I could find any scientific evidence to back up those claims.
What I was able to find were 22 total studies looking at Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea) and none of those were specific to any respiratory effects of the essential oil.
There was a study that found it had an antidepressant effect in rats. Another that studied women about to undergo a urological procedure did show a reduction in respiratory rate and blood pressure.
There were also laboratory studies showing that Clary Sage essential oil was effective against some infectious agents that were cultured from infected wounds that were not healing.
However, there are very few clinical human studies with Clary sage essential oil, and none of those studied effects on the respiratory system.
I would like to state for the record that I began selling essential oils after being in the respiratory care field for 34 years. I have a great affinity for evidence-based medicine. The current asthma treatments are effective for long-term control of asthma when used as directed by your physician. I do not ever recommend stopping your asthma medications to try out something to replace them.
However, after using essential oils pretty much daily and continuing to learn about them, I also have to say that they do have their uses.
I do use Clary Sage essential oil in aromatherapy for its calming effect, and I have noticed that it does clear my sinus passages and allows me to breath more freely without sinus congestion.
Does that mean it should be used in asthma? Good question. And since I have no other anecdotal evidence since I do not have asthma, I would have to say that it is possible that the antispasmodic effects reported by others MIGHT be helpful.
But that is a long way from saying and proving with scientific studies that it is safe and effective.
There is evidence that Clary Sage essential oil has calming effects and rat studies show it can be considered to have antidepressant effects. So if emotional triggers send you into an asthma attack then using calming essential oils, such as Clary Sage, Lavender, or Roman Chamomile might be helpful.
On the other hand, using Clary Sage essential oil for asthma has no scientific studies to back up the claims.
With the push these days of moving toward natural solutions it is imperative that each person decide for themselves if something works for them. It is also imperative that you discuss with your doctor any changes you want to make to your treatment plan.
Using essential oils is no different than using OTC drugs. What may relieve my headache or other problem may do nothing for you. We each have individual physiology that reacts somewhat differently to different substances. Whether those substances are drugs or foods, or anything else for that matter.
So can I say that Clary Sage oil will definitely not cure asthma? Absolutely. There is no cure for asthma.
But can I say it won’t help you use less of your inhaled bronchodilators? No, I can’t. However, there are no human trials to prove or disprove it.
So, as with so many other things having to do with essential oils, people will just have to learn all they can and try them out to see if they work.