Lemon Verbena (Aloysia citriodora or Lippia citriodora) is a tropical perennial plant from the Verbenaceae family originating from South America (Chile and Argentina). Its shrub can grow to 2-3 meters tall and it has small white and purple flowers. Lemon balm, vervain and lemon verbena are completely different plants. Lemon balm is part of the mint family whilst lemon verbena is from the Verbenaceae. The only thing they have in common is a lemony-citrus scent when their leaves are rubbed. It has been used as a flavouring additive in both foods and drinks, and now the traditional use of Lemon Verbena as a medicinal herb is coming back into fashion. Read on for our Top 5 Health Benefits of Lemon Verbena Tea!
1. Weight loss
As with all teas, lemon verbena tea has little to no calories, but the benefit of this tea is that it has a natural appetite suppressing property, it seems to regulate metabolism, and even break down cellulite. It is believed that its high catechin (natural phenols and antioxidant) content contribute to the support of weight loss.
2. Immunity boost
Lemon verbena is rich in phenolic compounds which protect you from harmful free radicals and helps boost your immune system and keep your body healthy. According to research, lemon verbena tea seems to have similar antioxidant effects to green tea; not only that but its free-radical activities are comparable to neuroprotective plants such as curcuma, ginseng and ginkgo biloba.
3. Joint health
Interestingly, a participant study on the effect of a combination of lemon verbena extract and omega-3 fatty acid fish oil on joint management showed a significant reduction in stiffness, pain and improved physical function from weeks three and four.
4. Helps digestion
Lemon verbena tea is known for its beneficial digestive qualities as well as antispasmodic properties. It helps reduce symptoms of indigestion, cramp, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) etc.
5. Reduces inflammation
According to research from 2014 that looked at the effects of dietary supplementation with lemon verbena extracts on serum inflammatory markers of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients; it showed that the most severe patients in the study who took the lemon verbena supplement had significantly lower C-reactive protein (a blood test marker for inflammation in the body) concentrations than the placebo group. (Although lemon verbena is typically considered safe for most people, some cases of skin irritation have been reported.)
How about trying on a cuppa hot lemon verbena tea for size? Maybe you’re already a big fan, tell us what you like most about it by commenting below, join in the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram. (Love tea? Then sample these other great tea articles and Top 5’s to help you get YOUR Fit ON!)