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  • Writer's pictureKeliza Healthy Living


By Dr. med. Claudia Schmiemann Lemon balm, scientifically known as Melissa officinalis, is a fragrant herb that has been cherished for centuries for its multitude of health benefits and culinary uses. Lemon balm’s historical use dates back to ancient civilizations, including the Greeks and Romans, who recognized its soothing properties. The name “Melissa” is derived from the Greek word for honeybee, highlighting the herb’s appeal to bees and its traditional use to attract them. Lemon balm has a reputation for its calming effects on the nervous system. It contains compounds that may help reduce anxiety, stress, and promote relaxation. Research suggests that lemon balm may enhance mood and cognitive function by interacting with GABA receptors, which play a crucial role in inhibiting brain activity and inducing relaxation. Lemon balm’s bioactive compounds, such as rosmarinic acid and flavonoids, have been studied for their potential cognitive-enhancing effects. These compounds may protect brain cells from oxidative stress and inflammation, thereby supporting memory, concentration, and overall cognitive function. Lemon balm has a history of use in alleviating digestive discomfort. It may help relax gastrointestinal muscles, reducing spasms and cramps. Phenolic compounds and triterpenes like citronellal and citral have antimicrobial properties and are also responsible for the distinctive lemon scent. I just harvested lemon balm in my garden and dried it to have it available as tea. I love to blend it with herbs from the mint family and ysop.

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