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10+ Lemon Balm Benefits (and Side Effects)

For generations, Lemon Balm has been used in tea, herb, flavoring, or culinary to enhance the flavor. It is full of excellent benefits.

Generally, Lemon Balm can help with blood pressure, stress, digestion, gut health, pain relief, various antioxidant properties, etc. Additionally, it helps to improve mood and cognitive function.

Along with various medicinal benefits, it can also provide aesthetics during summer. You will be able to see small white flowers full of nectars.

Continue reading to learn about some of the fantastic benefits of Lemon Balm!

Lemon Balm Overview

Lemon Balm might be confused with mint because of its physical similarity. However, it can be distinguished by the mild Lemon smell and taste.

Let’s dive deeper into the overview of Lemon Balm.

Scientific nameMelissa officinalis
Nativesouth-central Europe, the Mediterranean Basin, Iran, and Central Asia
USDA ZoneUSDA through 3 to 7
Plant Type Herbaceous perennial
Leaf Size2-8 cm
TextureHairy and coarse
Flowering SeasonLate Spring to Mid Summer
Flower ColorWhite, sometimes yellow, pinkish or Blue tint
SmellStrong lemon scent
SunlightFull and partial shade
WateringWater deeply and saturate the roots

Allow topsoil to dry before watering
Soil TypeWell drained slightly sandy

Soil pH: 6.5 to 7
FertilizerNitrogen fertilizer during growing season
PropagationCutting, Seed, Division, Layering

Do not mistake Lemon Balm for Lemon Tree!

11 Amazing Lemon Balm Benefits you Should Know

Lemon Balm has small leaves, which provides enormous benefits. It aids in treating various medical conditions involving the digestive and neurological systems and liver.

Lemon Balm growing outdoor
Lemon Balm is easy to care and grow in the draining soil.

Lemon balm is now utilized in traditional medicine as a sleep aid and a digestive tonic.

But, the potential benefits do not end there. Continue reading to learn more about this plant’s possible medicinal benefits.

1. Helps Reduce Stress

You should plant a Lemon Balm if you are lately under stress. It can help you with stress and improve your mood.

According to the research published in the National Library of Medicine, Lemon Balm helped relieve negative mood effects, increased self-ratings of calmness, and reduced self-ratings of alertness.

You should consume Lemon Balm to increase calmness, memory, and alertness if you are under mental stress.

Lemon Balm and other ingredients like valerian, chamomile, and hops might also reduce stress.

The chemical called Terpenes is found in the essential oils made from Lemon Balm leaves, are known for relaxation.

Terpenes help to release dopamine and serotonin in our bodies. These chemicals help with feelings of happiness, focus, calm, rewards, motivation, and productivity.

These chemicals have a sedative and calming effect. 

2. Provides Better Sleep

Lemon Balm is an excellent measure to help you with better sleep. Consume Lemon Balm with valerian for effective treatment of insomnia.

Research published by National Center for Biotechnology Information found that adults who were given Lemon Balm with Valerian twice a day significantly improved their sleep quality and latency.

The same study found that adults with sleep disturbance problems had better sleep quality with a single dose of Lemon Balm mixed with valerian.

Similarly, another study also discovered that Lemon Balm can help with sleep problems in women going through menopause.

A total of 100 women between 50 and 60 years who complained of sleep problems were studied.

When the experimental group was compared to the placebo group, there was a significant difference in reduced levels of sleep disturbances.

Lemon Balm contains a sedative effect which helps in better sleep.

3. Nutrient Enriched Herb

Lemon Balm is rich in nutrients such as Vitamins, Electrolytes, and Minerals and is a zero-calorie herb.

It is mainly high in potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, and energy. Overall, consuming Lemon Balm can have significant health benefits.

For more details on the nutrient factors of Lemon Balm, refer to the table given below:

PrincipleNutrient Value ( Per 100 gm Lemon Balm)
Calories (kcal)48
Fat (gm)1.0
Carbohydrates (g)3.0
Fibers (g)3.0
Vitamin C (mg)45.0
Vitamin E (mg)1.0
Vitamin B1/ Thiamine (mg)0.1
Vitamin B2 (mg)0.2
Vitamin B6 (mg)0.1
Vitamin B9/ Folate (μg)30.0
Iron (mg)2.0
Magnesium (mg)30.0
Zinc (mg)1.2
Sodium (mg)20.0
Calcium (mg)150.0

4. Helps With Alzheimer

One of the critical Lemon Balm benefits helps people with Alzheimer’s symptoms. Lemon Balm extracts may effectively help people with cognitive deficits.

Lemon Balm has memory-enhancing properties.

A study of Lemon Balm with patients of mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease revealed that Lemon Balm helped them and also has a positive effect on agitation in such patients.

Lemon Balm extract increases levels of acetylcholine, a brain chemical needed for memory and learning.

It also helps prevent plaque development in the brain, linked to Alzheimer’s disease’s progression.

Likewise, Lemon Balm consists of flavonoids that can scavenge free radicals. These free radicals can help with Alzheimer’s disease by destroying organisms that destroy white blood cells.

5. Helps Control Blood Pressure

Lemon Balm is rich in vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid. Vitamin C has many different benefits, such as controlling blood pressure.

A study in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition revealed that intake of Vitamin C was associated with controlled Systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP).

Another study also showed that Lemon Balm decreased weight, body mass index, and diastolic blood pressure during its consumption.

Likewise, several other studies have found that plants regulate blood pressure because people find it calming to be in the presence of plants.

6. Boosts Immune System

If you are feeling underwhelmed, then try using Lemon Balm. It will also reduce inflammation if you have any.

Lemon Balm contains a particular chemical called Terpene Citronellol, an immune booster.

According to the research published in Europe PMC, it was found that the water extracted from the leaves of Lemon Balm influenced the immune system in both humoral and cellular responses.

Lemon balm can help you to increase perspiration if consumed, which will, in turn, allow you to fight infections and fever. 

A study also found that the Lemon Balm helped boost the immune system and acted protective against coronavirus due to its antiviral properties.

7. Improves Gut Health

Lemon Balm has another benefit of improving gut health. If you have a gastrointestinal problem like bloating and indigestion, consider planting a Lemon Balm.
According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Diseases, around 60 to 70 million people in the United States of America are affected by all digestive diseases.

Lemon Balm may help treat indigestion (Dyspepsia), usually caused by eating fatty, acidic, or spicy food.

Lemon Balm Extracts
You can find Lemon Balm in many forms, including supplements and combination products.

Drinking Lemon Balm juice with other herbs like chamomile and valerian can help with indigestion.

8. Helps with Pain Relief

Lemon Balm can help relieve period pain, toothaches, earaches, headaches, etc.

If you are in pain due to that time of the month, you should try sipping some Lemon Balm tea. Lemon Balm will help soothe the period pain.

Research done in Iran with 100 high school girls found that receiving Lemon Balm essence during their period cycle showed a significant decrease in Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) symptoms and menstrual cramps.

Lemon Balm contains a chemical compound like rosmarinic acid. This chemical can help minimize the severity of menstrual symptoms like cramps and fatigue.

Likewise, another study also suggests that Lemon Balm in the form of plant juice, cream, or tea infusion can help relieve toothache, earache, headaches, etc.

9. Various Anti Properties

Lemon Balm is full of various anti-properties, including medicinal, antimicrobial, and antioxidant purposes and contains anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-spasmodic, and sedative effects.

A published study reveals that the antiviral property of Lemon Balm helps people with Herpes, Simples Virus Type 2, influenza viruses and myxovirus, semliki forest virus, mumps virus, etc.

Moreover, a study revealed that Lemon Balm is high in flavonoids, phenolic acids, terpenes, rosmarinic acid, and caffeic acids, which are full of antioxidant effects.

The Lemon Balm also contains eugenol acetate, which contributes to anti-spasmodic effects. It helps calm muscle spasms, numb tissue and kill bacteria.

Lemon Balm contains bacteriostatic, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral properties.

In addition, if you live in a place where mosquitoes are a severe problem, I have a solution: crushed Lemon Balm leaves.

Moreover, the Lemon balm has antihistamine effects; you can apply the crushed Lemon Balm to insect bites or other irritated areas.

10. Helps Treat Cold Sores

Cold sores, also known as fever blisters, are a group of tiny painful blisters. Herpes simplex virus (HSV) causes cold sores.

HSV has infected approximately 50% of kindergarten children and 90% of adults.

Several researchers have suggested that Lemon Balm ointments may help heal cold sores.

According to the study published on the National Center for Biotechnology Information, which involved 116 patients with HSV, antiviral activity in specially prepared Lemon Balm leaves showed signs of Herpes Simplex Infections.

The same study suggests that it is more effective when used earlier, which will prevent cold sores from taking place.

If people used Lemon Balm as a treatment agent during the primary stage of Herpes Simplex Virus-I, the chance of reoccurring would be less.

Lemon Balm can cure both oral and genital Herpes.

11. Culinary Uses of Lemon Balm

Lemon balm leaves provide a fantastic flavor to a variety of foods. You can use it in both savory foods as well as desserts.

  • You can make Lemon Balm tea from fresh or dried leaves. Put a bunch of leaves in water and serve it either hot or cold with honey.
  • Make Lemon Balm cookies or Lemon Balm bread as a snack or a nutritious breakfast.
  • You can incorporate Lemon Balm in your salad in two ways: adding a bunch of chopped Lemon Balm or making a vinaigrette dressing for your salad.
  • You can also make Lemon Balm flavored ice cream or make Lemon Balm icing for your cake.
  • One of my favorite way to incorporate Lemon Balm into my food is Lemon Balm pesto. You can indulge in Lemon Balm pesto pasta with an added advantage.

Health Considerations To Keep In Mind

People usually associate Lemon Balm with non-toxicity, but specific health considerations alsoexist.

The European Medicine Agency does not recommend the intake of Lemon Balm for children under 12 years of age.

The same article recommends not using Lemon Balm during pregnancy and the lactation period. We advise you not to intake the Lemon Balm while driving or using the machinery.

Another thing that you should keep in mind is it causes withdrawal symptoms. You are likely to have a risk of dependency if you have been using it for a long time.

A study published in the National Library of Medicine studied the case of a 30-year-old patient who had restlessness, tremor, distractibility and sweating after discontinuing the consumption of Lemon Balm.

Similarly, you should not consume more than 2 grams of Lemon Balm daily. Other possible side effects, like headache, skin irritation, stomach pain, dizziness, etc., might occur.

Likewise, you should not solely use Lemon Balm essential oil; you must dilute it with other carrier oils.

If you are using medications for Glaucoma, Thyroid, Serotonin, and Barbiturates, it is advised not to intake Lemon Balm.

The Lemon Balm is also a non-toxic herb for dogs, cats, and horses.

Where to Buy Lemon Balm?

After reading about the various benefits of Lemon Balm, you must have thought about where to buy it. I have got you covered.

You can buy Lemon Balm in the following online stores.

ShopsDelivery Days
AmazonThree to ten days
EtsyEight to fifteen days
The Growers ExchangeUp to 2 months
Wilson Bros GardensThree to 7 working days

If you do not want to buy the Lemon Balm plant, you can grow it from cuttings

From Editorial Team

Lemon Balm Available Forms!

The plant extracts are available in many forms, such as dried leaves, capsules, tinctures, lotions, ointments, massage oils, and others. 

But before you jump into using the extracts, you need to consider the side effects or consult the health assistants!

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