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Lemon balm, also known as lemon balm (Melissa officinalis), is a plant that has been used in folk medicine for centuries. It is known for its calming properties and is valued today in both traditional and modern medicine.

Discovery and historical use of lemon balm

It was cultivated and used in Europe as early as the Middle Ages. However, its discovery dates back to ancient times, when it was valued for its calming and healing properties, especially in the Mediterranean region. Historical records, including the works of the Greek physician, pharmacologist and botanist Dioscorides, describe its use to relieve nervousness and promote sleep.

Dosage forms and dosage

Lemon balm can be taken in various forms:

  • Tea: Dried lemon balm leaves are brewed with hot water. As a rule, 1-2 teaspoons of dried leaves are used for a cup of tea.
  • Extracts: In liquid form or as capsules, with the dosage varying depending on the concentration of the extract.
  • Essential oil: Often used in aromatherapy.

Dosage should be individualized, usually starting with low doses and increasing as needed and tolerated. It is important to follow the recommendations on the product packaging or consult a specialist.

Lemon balm: Healing effect for illnesses

Lemon balm is used to treat various illnesses:

  • Stress and anxiety: the calming properties can help to alleviate stress symptoms.
  • Sleep disorders: Promotes relaxation and can therefore improve sleep.
  • Digestive problems: Has an antispasmodic effect and helps with gastrointestinal complaints.
  • Herpes virus infections: It has antiviral properties that are particularly effective against herpes simplex viruses.

Effect on the body and recommendations for use

Lemon balm has a calming and antispasmodic effect on the nervous system and the digestive tract. The plant contains compounds that modulate the activity of certain enzymes and have a calming effect on the body. It should be taken especially when stress and restlessness interfere with daily life or when there are difficulties falling asleep.

Lemon balm: Precautions and contraindications

Taking lemon balm is not recommended for

  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women: There is insufficient data on safety.
  • People with thyroid problems: It may impair thyroid function.

Additional medicinal plants and dietary supplements

Other medicinal plants and dietary supplements can be used to support the effect of lemon balm:

  • Valerian: Enhances the calming effect.
  • Camomile: Supports the digestive effect.
  • Magnesium: supplements the calming effect on the nervous system.

Lemon balm in food and possible side effects

In the kitchen, it is mainly used in the form of fresh or dried leaves, e.g. in salads or as a spice for drinks and desserts.

Possible side effects include gastrointestinal complaints and allergic reactions. However, these usually only occur with excessive consumption.

Overdose and its consequences

An overdose can lead to various symptoms such as dizziness, nausea or increased drowsiness. If there are signs of an overdose, the intake should be reduced or discontinued and medical advice sought if necessary.

Lemon balm in naturopathy

In naturopathy, it is often used in combination with other calming herbs to enhance their effects and create a holistic remedy that works on different levels of the body.

Lemon balm is an example of the power of nature to help both prevent and treat illness. Its versatility makes it an indispensable part of the medicine cabinet. Anyone who integrates it into their health routine can benefit from its numerous advantages, but should also follow the instructions for safe use.

It is not only a medicinal plant with a long history, but also a current component of the modern, health-conscious lifestyle. Its use ranges from the medicine chest to professional phytotherapy, and its benefits have been documented in numerous studies. The following section delves into further aspects of its use and provides useful tips for integrating it into everyday life.

Lemon balm: Practical tips for everyday use

Lemon balm can be integrated into your daily diet and health plan in a variety of ways:

  • Tea in the evening: a calming tea before bedtime can help to relax the nervous system and improve sleep quality.
  • Scent therapy: Melissa essential oil in a fragrance lamp can create a relaxing atmosphere and reduce stress after a stressful day.
  • Kitchen herb: Fresh lemon balm is ideal for salads, smoothies and desserts, giving them a fresh, lemony flavor.

Dealing with side effects

Although lemon balm is generally well tolerated, attention should be paid to possible side effects when using it for the first time:

  • Monitor reactions: Everyone’s body reacts differently to medicinal herbs. It is important to watch out for signs of intolerance such as skin rashes or digestive problems.
  • Increase the dosage slowly: Start with a low dose and increase it slowly to test your personal tolerance.

Lemon balm together with other medicinal plants

The combination with other medicinal plants can improve the therapeutic properties and lead to a more comprehensive effect on health:

  • Lavender: both herbs have a calming effect and are particularly effective for anxiety and sleep disorders.
  • Peppermint: This combination can help with indigestion and aid digestion.

Research and future prospects

Scientific research into lemon balm is constantly evolving. Current studies are investigating the molecular mechanisms of its antiviral, antimicrobial and neuroprotective effects. In the future, this research could lead to the development of new melissa-based medicines that could be used in the treatment of more complex diseases such as Alzheimer’s or other neurodegenerative diseases.

Final thoughts

Lemon balm is a prime example of how traditional natural remedies can also have a firm place in modern medicine. Its versatility, its ability to alleviate a wide range of ailments and the fact that it can be easily and naturally integrated into everyday life make it a valuable part of any preventative healthcare regime.

When used responsibly and with attention to dosage and possible side effects, it can help many people to improve their well-being and lead a more harmonious life. Whether as a tea before going to bed or as part of a therapeutic blend, the healing power of lemon balm remains an indispensable part of naturopathy.

Published on: 24. April 2024


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