While it’s a popular addition to many kitchen gardens for its lemony scent and interesting flavor, lemongrass (Cymbopogon ciatrus) has many other uses too. This popular perennial herb can also be used as a medicinal plant and has been used in Chinese medicine for numerous years. Some of the most common lemongrass benefits include its diuretic, antibacterial and antifungal properties. The plant is also well-known for its ability to relieve pain.
Lemongrass oil is an effective diuretic, helping to detoxify the body’s liver, kidneys, bladder and digestive track. It also removes excess water and fats from the body as well as reduces swelling. Lemongrass oil can be taken in olive oil or some other oil-soluble medium.
Taking lemongrass internally helps stimulate digestion as well as blood circulation. It also helps with blood pressure and cholesterol levels. The plant can help alleviate indigestion, nausea and problems with gastroenteritis. The herb is also good for relieving colic and gas, especially in children. It is thought that lemongrass benefits the colon by preventing cancer too.
Lemongrass plant oil boosts the immune system with its antioxidant properties. The herb has also been referred to as fever grass for its use in treating fevers and cold symptoms. The oil has been used as topical medication for treating eye inflammation as well. Other benefits of lemongrass include its use as a pain reliever.
Arthritic pain and rheumatism can be relieved with lemongrass. In addition, the plant’s medicinal properties are helpful for many women. Made into a tea, the herb is great for relieving issues related to menstruation — cramps, bloating, pain, etc. Lemongrass benefits new mothers and babies too. It enhances the quality of breast milk by increasing the body’s natural production of galactogogue, which is responsible for milk formation. Lemongrass use should, however, be avoided during pregnancy. I
For those bothered by skin issues, lemongrass is an excellent skin cleanser. The use of lemongrass oil can reduce acne. It also acts as a muscle and tissue toner, making skin appear smoother and tighter. The oil may even benefit with cellulite reduction.
Of all the common lemongrass benefits for which this herb is known, its ability to relieve stress is one of the plant’s more popular qualities. Lemongrass contains citronella, which is well known for its calming effect. This makes the herb an excellent sedative, relieving both stress and insomnia. It is often used for the treatment of many types of nervous disorders as well.
In addition to using lemongrass oil medicinally, it is commonly added to many products such as soaps and candles. These products not only aid in stress relief but are oftentimes used as effective bug repellents.