Does this herb hold the secret to a long life?

The ticket to a long life may be growing in your herb garden.

In Acciaroli, a hamlet in Southern Italy, a potent variety of rosemary appears in nearly every dish. Residents regularly live to 100 or older, are less likely to develop heart disease and other age-related diseases, and have exceptional brain function into their second century. Scientists from the University of California at San Diego and Rome’s Sapienza University think rosemary is one reason.

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The Post first reported on the research in April, when it was still ongoing, and, in September, the final findings were unveiled at a conference in Italy.

“[Acciaroli residents] eat rosemary almost every day, and they grow it,” UCSD researcher Alan Maisel told the Agence France-Presse. “We know that rosemary improves brain function.”

Cleveland Clinic registered dietitian Kristin Kirkpatrick says the benefits of fresh rosemary are linked to the essential oils it contains. She estimates that consuming 2 tablespoons of any variety of the herb, whether cooked or raw, a few times a week is enough to see health benefits.

Here are five ways to do it.

1. Marinate your meats

Rosemary is “wonderful to tuck into a chicken with a lemon and a little bit of garlic,” says Danielle Rehfeld, an NYC-based chef and the founder of the Inherited Plate. The herb pairs well with the “other white meat,” too. Rehfeld suggests you “finely chop [the rosemary], mix with olive oil and garlic, and place in a hole that extends through the entire length of a big pork loin,” before roasting the whole thing at a low temperature.

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