Lemon Grass – A Miracle Herb

 

Lemongrass is a tropical perennial plant which yields aromatic or essential oils. It consists of thin, long leaves.

It derives its name from the typical lemony odour of the essential oil present in the shoot.

Moreover, it is one of the main medicinal and aromatic plants. And is cultivated in tropical and subtropical regions of Asia, South America, and Africa.

Nutritional Value

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database 2011.

Lemongrass is a rich source of essential vitamins and minerals. These are essential for healthy body function.

In particular, it contains vitamins such as vitamin A, B-vitamins, folate, and vitamin C.

Also Minerals such as potassium, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, zinc, and iron.

 

Benefits of Lemongrass

Studies say that Lemongrass is noticeably gaining commercial importance.

Furthermore, Its oil extract is used for flavours, perfumery, cosmetics, detergents, and pharmaceuticals, to name a few.

In fact, Some African countries, use lemongrass to treat diabetes and hypertension.

 

1.Dental health

lemongrass is found to be useful in the management of dental plaque. Furthermore, it is also useful in inflammation of the gums, bad breath, and in oral candidiasis.

 

2.Antimicrobial, Antifungal, and Antiviral Properties

The lemongrass essential oil noticeably shows activity against 20 different bacteria, seven different yeasts (including Candida albicans), and 15 different fungi.

Moreover, lemongrass essential oil can be more effective than antibiotics against certain pathogenic bacteria.

According to, The Aromatic and Medicinal Plants  Research Station, Odakkali. Subsequently, Applying lemongrass leaves mixed with buttermilk to the affected area improves the condition of ringworm.

 

3.Detoxification Properties 

Lemongrass is a good source of vitamin C and flavonoids. 

Besides, it removes toxins from the liver. 

likewise, Animal studies show the diuretic effect of the herb helps in increasing the quantity and frequency of urination. 

Hence, this helps in maintaining digestive health and detoxifying the body clean you from within. 

Lemongrass tea can prove to be a perfect detox tea for you. 

 

4.Stomach Problems

Lemongrass extract has protective effects against stomach ulcers as it has cooling energy.

In fact, Lemongrass infusion is given to children to improve their appetite and help indigestion.

Since ancient times it has been used as a remedy for various stomach problems such as bloating, constipation, and indigestion.

 

5.Anti-Anxiety Properties 

Because of the anxiolytic property, lemongrass essential oil is often used in aromatherapy to relax and feel-good.

Inhaling lemongrass essential oil has a mild sedative effect on the in the brain,  which helps to reduce anxiety.

 

6.Effect on Central Nervous System

Consume lemongrass extract in the form of teas or soups regularly. It contains nutrients that protect nerve cells such as zinc, magnesium, and folate.

This improves memory, concentration, and information processing.

 

7.Management of Heart Diseases

An article published in the African Journal of Biotechnology in 2007, says, consuming lemongrass extracts decreases body weight and lower serum cholesterol levels in animals.

These reductions in serum cholesterol level were dose-dependent.

This means the higher dose of lemongrass leads to a further reduction in cholesterol.

 

8.Insect Repellant

Lemongrass oil could be used as a chemical-free and safe mosquito repellent and insecticide in the fight against malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases.

Lemongrass extract has insect repellent compounds such as citral and geraniol.

It may also be used as a repellent against flies, wasps, ants and roaches.

Lemongrass oil concentration above 3% could provide protection for about 3 to 4 hours,

It can be used to clean fleas, ticks and lice in pets. It may be used as shampoos for your pet to keep bugs at bay.

 

9.Pain Relief

A study conducted at  EBSCO Information Services in 2018, shows positive effects of Lemongrass oil external application.

It has a significant effect on reducing the pain and inflammation in joints, muscles and surrounding soft tissue.

You may apply 5 ml of the lemongrass oil diluted with 25ml  base oil, daily on their body for about 30 days to feel the result.

It is also less expensive and has fewer side effects when compared to other synthetic drugs.

 

10.Influenza and Fever Relief

According to, The Aromatic and Medicinal Plants  Research Station, Odakkali.

Inhaling the steam of boiling lemongrass leaves in water is a cure for cold and influenza.

For bringing down a fever, few drops of oil are given with tea.

 

How to Use this Herb?

  • Lemongrass fuses well with garlic, coriander, ginger, mint and other herbs or spices used in flavouring soups.

 

  • Dry Lemongrass powder is used in some Asian countries. It adds flavour to various traditional curries, and spice up pickles and marinades.

 

  • Hot water extract of dry leaves is used for bathing or foot-baths for reducing fever and headache and removing excess heat in the body.

 

  • Raw juice or decoction of the young leaves of Lemongrass with black pepper is taken in case of menstrual disorder or menstrual cramps.

 

  • Having a mixture of  2 to 3 drops of lemongrass oil, sugar, dried ginger and pepper can get rid of common fever and cough.

 

  • Due to the antiseptic properties of lemongrass oil, the wounds heal in no time.

 

  •  Mix 3-4 drops of lemongrass oil with 20 to 25 drops of coconut oil proves an excellent remedy for various skin infections, cuts, wounds, acne and sores.

 

  • Boil the stalks in water for 5 minutes and strain the liquid to enjoy an amazing stress reliever and detox drink.

 

  • Add 4-5 drops to your favourite moisturizing cream to see the antioxidant benefits and also keep mosquitos at bay while you enjoy your evening walk.

 

  • Take  2-3 drops of essential oil in hot water orally for gastric trouble.

 

  • You can take few drops of oil with lemon juice, in case of diarrhoea.

 

  • Its aroma adds flavour to herbal tea, cocktails, iced tea, lemonade, and more

 

Possible Side Effects and Precautions

Lemongrass, in its plant form, is generally safe to use in food and beverages. Only higher quantity may increase the risk of developing side effects

Tropical use of Lemongrass essential oil may cause an allergic reaction or skin irritation in some people.

Other side effects of using lemongrass oil include:

  • dizziness
  • drowsiness
  • increased appetite
  • increased urination

 You should also talk to your doctor before use if you:

  • If you have liver disease.
  • If you are undergoing treatment.
  • If you are trying to conceive.
  • If you are pregnant.
  • If you are breastfeeding.
  • If you are trying to conceive.

 

You must avoid the use of lemongrass in place of your regular treatment for any condition. It is also strongly recommended to consult a doctor before considering lemongrass oil for complementary therapy.

Avoid undiluted or concentrated lemongrass oil directly on the body.

Stick to the recommended dosages when consuming lemongrass capsules.

It is advisable to keep the essential oil out of reach of children.

 

Some Interesting Recipes

 

Spiced tomato soup with ginger and lemongrass

 

                               Ingredients                                                    Approximate measure

         1.           Tomato, scrubbed and chopped                                       2 small sized

         2.           Leek, coarsely chopped                                                   2-3 small sized

         3.           Coriander leaves diced                                                    10-15 leaves

         4.           Ginger, minced                                                               half-inch piece

         5.           Lemongrass                                                                    2- 3 stalks

         6.           cloves, garlic, minced                                                      2 of each

         7.           Honey                                                                            1 tbsp

         8.           Butter                                                                            1 tbsp

         9.           Lemon juice                                                                    half lemon

       10.           Salt and pepper                                                               to taste

       11.           Water                                                                             1 cup

 

Method

Steam tomatoes till cooked, blend and make a paste. Add water and strain it to remove seeds and skin. Add garlic and ginger. Saute for several minutes. Add water and bring to a boil. Add lemongrass and add salt and pepper. Simmer until vegetables are tender. Puree until smooth. Add lemon juice, honey and seasoning. It is served hot. Garnish with shredded cheese (paneer) and parsley or cilantro or coriander leaves.      

 

Lemongrass iced tea

 

        1.                 Lemongrass                              3-4 stalks or 2-tsp dried powder

        2.                 Soda or Sizzling water               1 Glass

        3.                 Sugar Syrup                             1-2 tsp or to taste

        4.                 Lemon                                      Half slice

Method

Boil half a cup of water with 1 to 3 teaspoons fresh or dried lemongrass. Steep for at least five minutes. Add sugar syrup. Strain the tea.let the mixture cool. Add lemon juice, soda and ice cubes. Garnish with thin lemon slices and mint leaves. Enjoy sizzling iced lemongrass tea.

 

Final Word

In conclusion, Lemongrass is a popular herb in Asian countries. It is widely used for its numerous therapeutic and curative properties.

Additionally, due to negligible side effects, the natural remedy is preferred over synthetic chemicals.

Lemongrass is a natural herb and is healthy and easy to obtain.

While a few studies cite the health benefits of lemongrass, more and more human trials are needed to establish its efficacy and use as a medicinal herb.

 

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