Lemongrass, also called fever grass, is a perennial plant with thin, long leaves that is indigenous to many Asian countries. As the name implies, lemongrass smells like lemon, but it tastes milder and sweeter. Along with its culinary uses, lemongrass is useful in alternative or complementary remedies for a wide range of ailments. Here are the top benefits and uses for lemon grass:
The anti-cholesterol and anti-atherosclerosis action of lemongrass helps reduce the absorption of cholesterol from the intestine. Plus, it helps in the oxidation of LDL-cholesterol in the blood, which in turn helps prevent atherosclerotic plaque buildup.
Lemongrass helps in cleansing and flushing harmful toxic wastes out of the body, as a result of its diuretic properties. Detoxification helps in better regulation of various organs of the body, including the liver and kidney, while also helping to lower the levels of uric acid. The diuretic effect of lemongrass helps in increasing the quantity and frequency of urination, which helps in maintaining a clean system.
ACHES AND PAINS
Lemongrass helps in alleviating the pain and discomfort caused by headaches and migraines due to its analgesic properties. The phytonutrients present in lemongrass improve the blood circulation and help in relieving spasms, muscle cramps, sprains, and back aches.
Lemongrass is a febrifuge and is also known as the ‘fever grass’, owing to its beneficial effects in lowering fevers. The anti-pyretic and diaphoretic effect of lemongrass is extensively used in Ayurvedic medicine for curing fevers by inducing sweating.
GOOD FOR LACTATING MOTHERS
Lemongrass is highly beneficial for new mothers who are breastfeeding their babies. It has galactogogue properties that help increase breast milk production. Its antimicrobial and antibacterial properties also help the babies remain healthy and free from infections. Lactating mothers can drink one to two cups of lemongrass tea daily; although it should be avoided during pregnancy.
COLD AND FLU REMEDY
Boil a few fresh strands of lemongrass, two or three cloves, a small piece of cinnamon stick, one teaspoon of turmeric powder in one cup of milk. Strain and drink it when it cools down. Drink this once a day for a few days.
You can mix lemongrass oil with coconut oil in a 1:2 ratio and rub it over the affected area. Leave it on for a few hours before rinsing it off. Do this daily for a few weeks. You can also drink lemongrass tea twice daily for best results.
Take fresh aloe vera and extract the gel-like liquid, then add in a teaspoon of witch hazel and a couple of drops of lemongrass juice or essential oil. Smooth over freshly washed skin and allow setting before applying a moisturizer or sunscreen.
Make a lemongrass hair rinse using 2-3 teaspoons of dried lemongrass with 1 cup of boiling water. Let it steep for 15 minutes, strain out the herbs and use it as a hair wash or rinse (before conditioning unless you have oily hair) when it has cooled. Add a teaspoon of vegetable glycerin as a humectant, if you like.
Dilute 2-3 drops of lemongrass oil in a cup of water and use as a mouthwash twice a day. You can fill this solution and store it in a bottle for a week. The fresh, citrusy fragrance of lemongrass will prevent plaque and also help in keeping mouth odour at bay.