Extract of Perilla frutescens enriched for rosmarinic acid, a polyphenolic phytochemical, suppresses allergic immunoglobulin responses and inflammation caused by polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNL) in mice. However, few placebo-controlled clinical trials have examined the efficacy and safety of polyphenolic phytochemicals for treatment of allergic inflammatory diseases in humans. The present study determined whether oral supplementation with rosmarinic acid is an effective intervention for patients with seasonal allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (SAR). In this 21-day, randomized, double-blind, age-matched, placebo-controlled parallel group study, patients with mild SAR were treated daily with extract of Perilla frutescens enriched for rosmarinic acid (200 mg [n=10] or 50 mg [n=9]) or placebo (n=10). Patients recorded symptoms daily in a diary. Profiles of infiltrating cells and concentrations of eotaxin, IL-1beta, IL-8, and histamine were measured in nasal lavage fluid. Serum IgE concentrations and routine blood tests were also examined. As compared with placebo supplementation, supplementation with extract of Perilla frutescens enriched for rosmarinic acid resulted in a significant increase in responder rates for itchy nose, watery eyes, itchy eyes, and total symptoms (P<0.05). Active treatment significantly decreased the numbers of neutrophils and eosinophils in nasal lavage fluid (P<0.05 vs. placebo). Patients reported no adverse events, and no significant abnormalities were detected in routine blood tests. In conclusion, extract of Perilla frutescens enriched for rosmarinic acid can be an effective intervention for mild SAR at least partly through inhibition of PMNL infiltration into the nostrils. Use of this alternative treatment for SAR might reduce treatment costs for allergic diseases.