The lemon verbena is a plant known in many homes, its scientific name is aloysia citriodora, it exists millions of years ago, it was widely used, especially to relieve headaches, mainly. It is a perennial plant, its cultivation is easy and does not require more care.
It is rich in many properties and is given multiple uses, it has a pleasant aroma similar to lemon, which is why it is used in aromatherapy. It is also known as lemon verbena, Marialuisa, it is native to South America, it can grow up to 3 meters. It has white to pink flowers that are small, common in summer mostly.
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What is lemon verbena?
It is a wild and beautiful plant due to its white to pink flowers, the plant is green in color with a very refreshing lemon flavor and smell, it is also known as Indian verbena, lemon verbena or marialuisa. It is part of the Verbanaceae family, it is favored in hot climates but also requires humidity and the sun.
Origin of lemon verbena
Its origin dates from South America but nevertheless it is common to see it in hot and tropical countries such as Argentina, Chile and Argentina, and Europe since the 18th century. it is very domestic, it adapts easily to many soils, it resists rain, sun, so the soils must be semi-humid, it is common to see it in many homes, it is planted for commercial, medicinal and ornamental purposes.
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History of lemon verbena
This plant was introduced to Europe, even though its origin is from South America, it is said that during the Middle Ages its great properties for physical and mental health were known, many used its fresh or dried flowers for the relief and cure of many diseases , it was common to see their plantations in the monasteries where they said it was to heal the sick and they made a kind of garden with medicinal plants, including this lemon verbena.
The name of this plant was determined to honor Queen María Luisa de Parma who was the wife of Carlos IV, she was considered a very ugly queen, in that country and she did not like her name, then they knew of this beautiful plant to which it occurred to them to assign the name of María luisa or Hierbaluisa, since then it has spread to many parts of the world as lemon verbena, being used as a cure for many ailments and added to the cosmetic industry in the elaboration of perfumes and creams for its fresh lemon scent. They used to place leaves or flowers inside pillows to stimulate sleep and relax the body.
Characteristics of lemon verbena
The lemon verbena is characterized by being a green perennial wild shrub with beautiful white to pink flowers, it can grow up to 3 meters in height, its leaves are elongated and smooth, its roots are woody, it is adaptable to semi-humid soil, it supports Sun and shade half a day for each one preferably, it has a soft citric aroma similar to lemon, it is fresh and relaxing, due to its many properties it is also called princess grass, thanks to the fact that it helps to take care of and prevent many diseases of the body.
Scientific name of lemon verbena
The lemon verbena or lemon grass has the scientific name of Cymbopogon Citratus, from this incredible plant the essential oil of lemon verbena is extracted using its leaves and stem mainly, through the steam distillation method, totally natural.
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Chemical composition of lemon verbena
Contains the following
- Geraniol at 3.04%.
- Aldehydes such as beta citral at 32% and alpha citral at 40% which are fungicidal and antibacterial.
- Citronellal at 2.10%.
- Flavonoids like Orientin, Isoorientin, Luteolin
- Limonene which is anticancer and antispasmodic in addition to giving it that lemon scent.
- Myrcene at 0.72%.
- Methylheptenone at 0.2%.
- Phenolic acids such as Cafeico.
- Triterpenes like Cymbopogonol and Cymbopogona.
- Alcohols like Nerol at 4.18%.
Some of the best known components are:
- Citral: this component is present in approximately 40% and is characterized by being fungicides, antihistamines, fungicides, antibacterials, anticancer expectorants.
- Linalol: is a component capable of acting as a hepatoprotective, antibacterial, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic
- Canphenol: this component is one of those responsible for the lemon verbena having antioxidant and expectorant properties.
- Terpineol: it is an antiasthmatic, antitussive, expectorant, and is antibacterial.
- Caryophyllene: this component fights tumors, inflammations, asthma, respiratory diseases, it is antibacterial.
- Cineol: contains the properties described above so that each component has similar properties.
- Limonene: Limonene is responsible for the lemon-like smell in addition to being expectorant, antibacterial, anticancer, and antispasmodic.
- Flavonoids: flavonoids are responsible for giving pigmentation color so that it is noticeable externally, which is why it plays a fundamental role in caring for the body.
Active ingredient of lemon verbena
The active ingredients of lemon verbena are mainly, Flavonoids, limonene, which gives its excellent smell to lemon, Verbenone, caryophyllene, Coumarins, Essential oils with citral, terpineol, linalol and geraniol,
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Recommended dose of lemon verbena
One of the best ways to obtain its benefits is through the Infusion which is made with a cup of water that you will bring to a boil and add a teaspoon of lemon verbena, let it boil for about 3 minutes and turn off you can consume naturally two or three times a day.
- Tincture is used about 30 to 50 drops in the morning, at noon and at night.
- Fluid extract only about 15 to 20 drops should be consumed diluted in water after each meal that is three times a day.
Cultivation of lemon verbena
The cultivation at home is widely used, it can be done in pots or directly in your medicinal garden, ideal to always have in case you need it. It requires a lot of sunlight, much more than shade, it also requires little humidity, it adapts easily to hot climates, although it is also quite tolerant of rainy periods.
When it is just sown it requires special care, for example fertilizing every 10 days, removing the dried leaves or flowers to allow its development and watering it often. To reproduce it, it is enough to sow by roots or cuttings, it is an insecticidal plant so it is ideal to have it home to ward off annoying mosquitoes.
There are medicinal crops to market it through natural drugs, as well as for the cosmetic industry.
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Uses and benefits of lemon verbena
What are the benefits to lose weight?
The lemon verbena has components that help the body detoxify thus discarding what it does not need and for a greater absorption of nutrients and vitamins necessary for its development. In this way, lemon verbena stimulates the fluid of accumulated body fat and its subsequent expulsion, which is why it is considered to be a natural slimming agent.
- It is an excellent digestive
- Stabilizes the nervous systems of the body
- You reduce gas, stomach colic, favoring its expulsion
- Cleanses the body of liquid and solid waste
- Cleanses the blood of impurities
- Promotes blood circulation
- It is a diuretic, ideal if you suffer from fluid retention
- Stimulates sleep, fighting fatigue and stress.
To help increase your metabolism you can resort to the infusion of lemon verbena three times a day before each meal, this will cause the effects described above but it is not everything, you must do a little physical activity such as walking daily, something that allows you to burn toxins, and make fat flow, in addition to taking care of a diet in which you must include more fruits, vegetables, and vegetables and drink plenty of water.
Does it have properties for insomnia?
Among its chemical components is the hormone melatonin , it is a hormone that we also have in the blood of the body to a lesser extent, it works like the clock so it leads our body to maintain the rhythm of day and night, it tells us when the body goes about its daily work and needs to sleep.
Likewise, when you have had enough sleep and it is time to wake up, it is similar to the rhythm of the clock, but there are people who lack a little more of this component because lemon verbena contains it and they recommend consuming a cup of herbal tea luisa, or apply 5 drops of lemon verbena essential oil to the bathtub and you will feel a relaxing effect, that you will want to go to bed immediately.
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Is it good for anxiety?
Lemon verbena is a plant that contains stabilizing effects on the nervous system and states of depression or anxiety triggered by various factors or problems in daily life. You should take an infusion or tea of dried lemon verbena flowers, about two tablespoons in boiling water, strain and consume twice a day until such illnesses normalize.
It is a natural diuretic, why?
It is a natural diuretic, lemon verbena helps to eliminate waste that the body does not need, it is excellent for people who retain fluids, the toxins expelled will be of great help to the body since without them the functioning of the same will work better.
How is lemon verbena oil extracted?
The lemon verbena oil is extracted by steam distillation of fresh flowers, leaves and stems, it is usually extracted freshly cut the plants to take advantage of their freshness and not lose any nutrients or vital components.
Pregnancy and lemon verbena
The lemon verbena is not recommended to consume during pregnancy because it further activates the action of the uterus, so it can be dangerous for the baby, it could generate contractions before time, avoid its consumption.
Lemon verbena as an insect repellent
Herb Luisa, lemongrass or malojillo as it is known is a natural insect repellent, due to the smell of lemon. It is recommended to use the infusion of lemon verbena to spray throughout the house to ward off mosquitoes and mosquitoes that can affect the health of all, if in any case you suffer a bite from one of them do not worry just add a little infusion of lemon verbena on the wound or sting, to improve the condition.
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Lemon verbena is good for the stomach
This lemongrass or lemongrass plant is an excellent digestive , since it allows the reduction of colic, spasms due to the ingestion of difficult to digest or heavy food, for which an infusion of lemongrass before eating will avoid this condition and you will feel all the safety of eating without feeling bloated. It is not laxative but it helps the transit of waste in the intestines for its expulsion.
What are lemon verbena infusions for?
The lemon verbena infusion is highly beneficial for many things because first of all we mention that it improves oral health, by taking swish of lemon verbena infusion not only strengthens the gums, strengthens the teeth, but also combats halitosis or bad breath, It is also widely used to improve pictures of colds or flu. Also To strengthen the immune system.
And to reduce stress?
If it is possible to get rid of stress and tension from the day’s activities with lemon verbena, just take a cup of lemon verbena tea three times a day, it will give a feeling of rest, it is a natural sedative, eliminates anxiety and improves states of depression. In addition to helping you sleep peacefully.
To prepare it, just boil a cup of water to which you will add three tablespoons of dried lemon verbena or if you want some fresh twigs as you like, let it boil for about 3 minutes, and remove from the heat with this preparation you will feel more relaxed and help many others things inside your body.
The lemon verbena in gastronomy
Herb María Luisa or Herb luisa is widely used to flavor oils for cooking, in addition to providing a pleasant flavor, the use of dried flowers is an ideal spice to marinate chickens, meats and fish, oils flavored with lemon verbena are used in the dressing of sauces and salads, stews, in pastries it is also used in creams for cakes, cookies, sweets, jams, cakes, custards, and more.
They are used fresh to better obtain their properties and finely chopped are added to garnish and flavor dishes such as fish, meat, vegetables or others, or they are added to cooking meals.
Baked vegetables with lemon verbena
You need vegetables such as potatoes, squash, plantain which you will wash and chop into large pieces. Place on a tray to which you will add a garlic dressing with salt, pepper and flavored lemongrass oil, bake for 30 minutes. Ideal to accompany fish or meat fillets.
Cosmetic uses of lemon verbena
Essential oil has favorable components and vitamins for the body, these aromatic oils act as antibacterials, shampoos, moisturizers, flavorings, soaps, tonics. And many more for comprehensive health and beauty care.
Medicinal uses of lemon verbena
It is carminative
The lemon verbena infusion protects the digestive system from gas, which is also known as arerophy and flatulence due to its carminative properties, relieves the strongest colic, and heaviness of the stomach. They contain lemongrass and caryophyllene that also provide these protections for the digestive system. And it fights harmful bacteria to the body.
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Its content in camphene, which is a natural antioxidant present in the entire aromatic plant. It is an agent that delays the oxidation action of cells and skin tissues, fighting free radicals, for greater care and protection of the skin, hydrates it, prevents the appearance of wrinkles. Another of its components is lemon balm, ideal for combating skin eczema, irritation and healing wounds.
It works as an anticancer
The antioxidants present in lemon verbena or lemon grass are a source of protection for the body against free radicals, external agents of the environment such as sun, humidity, dryness that little by little deteriorate our skin by aging it, in this the flavonoids intervene, which cancer cell blockers preventing their development and spread to other areas of the body.
Many clinical studies have shown the incidence of flavonoids in the prevention of cancer, therefore, they have recommended that more foods with a high content of flavonoids be consumed, for this reason medicinal plants such as lemon verbena are widely used to act as a preventive method against cancer.
The lemon verbena contains natural antioxidants, which raise our defenses against neutrophils or white blood cells that are responsible for fighting infections and bacteria that affect the body, that is, they are the body’s natural defense against viruses and diseases.
Citral is a chemical component present as the antihistamine in the lemon verbena plant, this important component prevents and controls many types of allergies, especially respiratory allergies, and those of the skin that are peculiar to people, therefore it helps a lot and it is recommended to drink it as an infusion.
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Linalol is an active chemical component present in lemon verbena, it acts as ideal antispasmodics to eliminate digestive system conditions caused by gas, colic, flatulence, it is a great anti-inflammatory that fights the inflammatory action of the body, especially if it is gallstones in the gallbladder and kidneys, should be applied topically for its improvement.
An effective expectorant
In the cases of flu is common, lemon verbena is widely used as an infusion to lower fever, decongest the respiratory tract, greatly improve flu, bronchitis, nasal passages obstructed by phlegm, when ingested it helps to expel phlegm and mucus from the lungs and respiratory tract in general, relieves the irritability of the throat that generates hoarseness, itching, burning, and general listlessness, lack of appetite, also contributes to improving the nervous state of the body that is altered before health processes.
Helps clear acne
Acne is one of the common skin diseases caused by excess bait or oil on the skin as well as by the accumulation of dead skin that inflames the hair follicles. It is very common in adolescents and young people, although it is certainly ageless. To appear or disappear, it can be painful to have acne since it generates itchy inflammation, in the skin around the inflamed pimple, it has been proven through studies that lemon verbena improves this condition because it helps detoxify the skin of toxins and impurities in the blood, therefore, eliminates and improves the appearance of your skin, while disinfecting and deflating it, considerably increasing a prompt improvement.
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For irritable bowel
The lemon verbena is the medicinal plant that favors the irritable colon for many reasons we mention some:
- Helps to significantly reduce stress
- Levels the nervous system causing stress, depression, anxiety
- Promotes the expulsion of gases, improving digestion
- Helps the production of bile by acting positively for the colon and gallbladder
- And many more benefits that we have described throughout this health article.
It should be consumed as a duarte infusion three times a day before each meal, if you like you can add sugar or honey, although its refreshing taste is so pleasant that it does not need to be sweetened.
The lemon verbena has antibacterial properties thanks to citral, it fights fungi and bacteria that cause diseases on the body, it is very common for the cosmetic industry to add lemon verbena in the production of perfumes, antibacterial to keep us clean and protected always, as well as shampoos, deodorants, toners soaps many more is a very broad market to benefit the health of the body.
You can apply the infusion in sprinklers and spread around your home and favorite spaces, in addition to scent, kills bacteria, and repels mosquitoes. Together with lemon, it fights many bacteria present in the body and in the environment, helps wound healing, skin lesions such as acne, eczema, irritations.
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Contraindications and risks of lemon verbena
The lemon verbena has multiple properties and health benefits, which should not be consumed in excess, for example, the sensitivity of the skin to the use of lemon verbena causes irritation itching burning, it is also contraindicated for diabetics since it is not tolerant to insulin.
The Cedrón as it is also known to the Lemon grass have around 120 components or more citral oil present, which by itself can be neurotoxic when ingested in high doses or very often, so it is recommended to be moderate when taking it , do not exceed the recommendations and prescriptions given.
The high consumption of neurotoxins generates alterations of the central nervous system, vital organs of the body, that is to say, consuming so much it can cause us the opposite effects to those we want, its use or consumption is not advisable in pregnant women.
Its adverse effects can be euphoria, dizziness, irritability of mood, nausea, vertigo, drowsiness, confusion, imbalance, memory disturbances, anxiety, poor reasoning, diarrhea, burning when urinating, vomiting, inflammation of the tongue, disorders of the skin among others … you notice some difference … if so, they will notice that instead of healing us, it would generate even more serious conditions than we initially wanted to treat.
Toxicity of lemon verbena
It is not toxic, in general, you just have to take it with caution so as not to exceed the doses, its use is recommended for the improvement of diseases, but in excess, even gastritis can cause you, headaches, or general weakness. The essential oil of lemon verbena in high doses can generate photosensitivity, or spots, irritations on the skin from the sun.
Citral is the component with the highest toxicity present in lemon verbena, but it is also beneficial because it is fungicidal, expectorant, antibacterial, antihistamine, and anticancer. Do not exceed the dose, and if this is the case, discontinue its use quickly.
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Lemon verbena in gastronomy
Lemon verbena is widely used in the culinary arts for its aroma and fresh lemon flavor, it unbearably perfumes your kitchen and your preparations, it is the ideal dressing for chickens, fish, vegetables, meats, stews, salads, creams, cookies, cakes, etc. ideal also combined with liqueurs, chalks, cocktails, milkshakes, sweets and many others.
Lemongrass cocktail with peach
- 1 ripe peach, washed and diced
- 4 cups of peach flavored tea
- Juice of one lemon
- 1/2 cup of vodka or liquor
- 1 sprig of fresh lemon verbena
- 3 tablespoons of pure honey
In a jar or large container add all the ingredients, move well and put in the fridge for half a day or more if you like for a greater concentration of flavors and smells, when serving, strain it before leaving only the peach as an ornament in the glasses, Take good cold and health.
Fish with lemon verbena
Fish fillet or whole, salt to taste, garlic, pepper, a lemon, finely chopped lemon verbena, oil and soy sauce,
Clean the fish well, then wash and drain, make a few cuts on both sides, once ready, season with salt, pepper, garlic, soy sauce, and place the lemon verbena inside the fish.
Place on a tray and sprinkle the judo of a lemon on it, bake for about 10 minutes, serve with a rich rice and baked potatoes as garnish finely chopped lemon verbena scattered on the plate and lemon slices. Enjoy your meal.
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Nutritional information for lemon verbena
- Calories 0.01%
- Sodium 0.6%
- Fiber 1.8%
- Carbohydrates 0.1%
- Potassium 0.8%
- Calcium 0.3%
- Sugars 6%
- Phosphorus 0.4%
- Vitamin B2 0.8%
- Saturated fat 0 gr
- Cholesterol 0%
- Magnesium 0%
- Zinc 0%
Kathie Sand always saw the world of beauty as the terrain on which to build her professional career, a goal that was clear to her when she was only 15 years old. Her great concern to expand knowledge led her to settle in Paris where she studied hand in hand with the best beauty professionals and with the most advanced techniques for skin care.