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07 Oct 2016

Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis natural treatments) is a perennial herb of the mint family. It is native to south Europe and the Mediterranean region. It is called "lemon balm" because its leaves have a sweet lemon like smell. It is very attractive to bees. Its extract is one of the best herbal remedies for anxiety. It is also effective for stress and sleeplessness.

 Folklore has it that lemon balm mixed with wine comforts the heart, drives away melancholy and sadness, renews youth and strengthens the brain. Modern research indicates that lemon balm extract has powerful anti-anxiety and anti-oxidant properties.

It is often combined with other herbs for anxiety. A study conducted at Northumbria University, Newcastle indicated that a combination of lemon balm and valerian is effective in reducing anxiety.

Lemon balm for anxiety and sleep is commercially available as a dietary supplement in stores and can also be purchased online. Its purchase does not require a medical prescription. Lemon balm is also used as a flavoring agent in herbal teas and ice-creams.

·         Lemon Balm

·         Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

·         Botanical Name

·         Melissa officinalis

·         Common Names

·         Lemon balm, sweet balm, balm mint, melissa.

·         Uses of Lemon Balm

Aromatherapy, flavouring agent for ice creams and herbal teas, popular herbal remedy for anxiety, stress, insomnia, headache, hyperthyroidism, spasms, fever, antiseptic for wounds, insect bites, cold sores or herpes simplex. Improves mood and mental performance.

Active Substances - What Does Lemon Balm Extract Contain?

Lemon balm extract contains osmarinic acid, citronellal, geranial, linalyl acetate, caryophyllene, eugenol, tannins, terpenes, etc.

Mechanism of action - How Does Lemon Balm Work?

Rosmarinic acid present in lemon balm extract appears to inhibit the action of GABA transaminase enzyme.

Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a major inhibitory neurotransmitter present in the central nervous system. Substances that mimic the action of GABA or increase its available amount in the central nervous system have relaxing, anti-anxiety, anti-convulsive, and sedative effects

Side Effects of Lemon Balm

Lemon balm for anxiety and sleep disorders is generally regarded as safe but it may cause sweating and drowsiness.

Interactions - Things to Avoid While Taking Lemon Balm

Avoid alcohol, sedatives, thyroid medications, other anti-anxiety drugs, and narcotic pain relievers while taking lemon balm for anxiety or sleeplessness.

Contraindications - Who Should Not Take Lemon Balm?

Pregnant or breast-feeding women should not use lemon balm. It should not be used by people who are taking medicines containing thyroxine because lemon balm can decrease its absorption.

Special Precautions

Avoid driving or operating heavy machinery that requires you to be alert if you feel drowsy. Also see interactions and contraindications mentioned above.


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