Everyone is lately talking of this herbal tea, and they have sound reason to do so. To be honest, this is a drink that has been tested over time and has an excellent record as an Ayurveda favorite. Lemongrass tea is a very healthy drink offering numerous health benefits to consumers.
How is lemongrass tea made?
Unlike green tea, there are no tea leaves to steep. Lemongrass tea is an herbal infusion of lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) leaf powder extract. Most lemongrass tea recipes call for Vietnamese ingredients and flavors such as – ginger, lime, and sugar.
What is the nutritional value of lemongrass?
Cymbopogon citratus been noted to cure several ailments and has equally been used in for other commercial purposes due to its fragrance. As a tea, we shall look at the nutritional value of the plant and the benefits it can have on our body if we consume it as a tea.
Lemongrass is a repository of vital nutrients that provide numerous health benefits. It contains essential minerals such as calcium, potassium, phosphorous, magnesium, iron, zinc and copper required by the body for healthy functioning. It also contains vitamins such as vitamin A, Vitamin B (thiamine, pyridoxine, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, and pyridoxine), Vitamin C, and folate. All these vitamins serve a fundamental purpose in the body in enhancing healthy functioning.
Lemongrass contains flavonoids, antioxidants and phenolic compounds like glycosides, luteolin, kaempferol, quercetin, catechol, elemicin, caffeic acid and chlorogenic acid which, collectively, provide medicinal aid to the body. The primary component of lemongrass is referred to as citral which has antimicrobial and antifungal properties. It can be brewed as a tea or applied to the skin as an essential oil. The well-known lemongrass tea benefits include:
1. Cancer Treatment
Lemongrass has been established to be a treatment for several cancers. Important research carried out determined that lemongrass has anti-cancerous capabilities and could help in treating skin cancer. Moreover, another study has shown that the Citral in lemongrass prevents the growth of hepatic cancer and inhibits further replication of cancerous cells. In another study, the anti-proliferative effect of the compound citral in nipping the growth of breast cancer cells has obtained supporting evidence.
2. Cholesterol Management
Studies show that regular consumption of lemongrass during dexamethasone treatment can significantly sustain healthy levels of triglycerides atherogenic index, and reduce dexamethasone-elevated LDL cholesterol within the body. Accumulation of lipids within the blood is inhibited and, therefore, prevents the development of atherosclerosis. the condition, which leads to serious cardiac disorders.
3. Staphylococcus aureus
Studies have demonstrated that lemongrass contains anti-biofilm properties capable of preventing Staphylococcus aureus infection. Lemongrass contains phenols which easily spread through body tissue to keep the balance between microorganisms on any part of the body.
In a study carried on mice, it was established that the diuretic properties of lemongrass enable it to cleanse and flush out any toxins from the body. It is noteworthy to mention that detoxification is essential for the regulation of vital organs such as the kidney and the liver. Consequently, the diuretic effect of lemongrass facilitates the frequency of urination while also eliminating any accumulated metabolites hence promoting and maintaining a clean digestive system.
5. Stomach disorders
Lemongrass contains antibacterial and anti-microbial properties that help it to fight pathogens such as Escherichia coli and Helicobacter pylori responsible for stomach disorders. Studies have also illuminated on its ability to prevent gastrointestinal complications such as gastric ulcers. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that aid in treating stomach aches.
6. Respiratory Disorders
Lemongrass contains vitamin C which is beneficial in providing relief from flu, nasal blockages, and bronchial asthma.
Research on mice shows that lemongrass has mild hypnotic and sedative effects which increase the quality and duration of sleep. The tea contains no caffeine – a big advantage for those who wish to drink it before bed and enjoy a good night’s sleep. In addition, Manzanilla tea also helps treat insomnia.
Lemongrass has been used in Ayurvedic medicine to cure fevers through inducing sweating. The diaphoretic and antipyretic effect of this herb makes it ideal for curing fevers.
Research shows that lemongrass has antiseptic properties and can treat infections such as ringworms, urinary tract infections, and athlete's foot among others due to its antifungal and anti-bacterial properties. Additionally, it can heal dermatological diseases through prevention of pathogen growth.
10. Nervous System
Lemongrass is an anti-depressant, hence it serves well to reduce nervous exhaustion. It can stimulate the mind and combat nervousness, convulsions and several neurological disorders.
Lemongrass has analgesic properties that help in alleviating pains caused by migraines and headaches. The phytonutrients in lemongrass aid in facilitating blood circulation. It is also valuable in the treatment of internal injuries and sports wounds.
12. Type-2 Diabetes
Studies show that citral in lemongrass aids in maintaining body insulin level at optimal values while improving glucose tolerance level.
Lemongrass relieves pain caused by rheumatism. Additionally, it can relieve neuralgia and other pains.
14. Immune System
Lemongrass tea restores vital systems that facilitate respiration, digestion, nervous system and excretion. This aids in the absorption of nutrients and strengthening the body’s immune defense system. Lemongrass is beneficial in the inflammatory activities of cytokines responsible for cell communication and response. Studies reveal that citral in lemongrass assists in inhibiting cytokine production and thereby exerting an anti-inflammatory effect.
15. Skin Care
Lemongrass has antiseptic and astringent qualities that make it an ideal skin cleanser. Its efficacy in toning skin pores and in strengthening makes it very efficient.
16. Cellular Health
Lemongrass is an antioxidant and therefore protects the body cells from free radicals that may damage DNA sequence and result in diseases. Lemongrass supports the thymus glands, the production of white blood cells, aids the spleen in disposing of the distorted red blood cells and helps in stimulating cell regeneration.
Lemongrass helps in curing edema since it has purgatory effect on lymphatic congestion while aiding in soothing swelling.
Lemongrass tea has a scent that is very calming to the human senses. It can relieve stress through its fragrance. The ingredients heptenone, geraniol, dipentene, myrcene, citronellol, and nerol which have antiseptic and anti-fungal properties act as therapeutic agents. Moreover, the astringent qualities of this herb stimulate blood circulation. The therapeutic effects of lemongrass aid in body revitalization and refreshing.
19. Lemongrass tea for weight loss
The citral present in lemongrass is effective in combating obesity. It limits the excessive accumulation of body fat while promoting the utilization of stored energy, and thereby abetting any diet-induced obesity. Additionally, it facilitates healthy metabolism while also enhancing fatty acid oxidation.
20. Body Odour
The antibacterial property of lemongrass enables it to combat body odour by preventing bacterial and fungal infections that are responsible for the bad smell. Hence, regularly having a cup of lemon tea will purge the body from any bad odours.
21. Reduce high blood pressure
Lemongrass helps in reducing high blood pressure by relaxing blood vessels and preventing angiospasm.
Having a cup of lemongrass tea can help in reducing indigestion problems by improving digestion and facilitation of bowel movement. It contains citral which is very useful in food digestion. Having a cup of lemon tea after dinner is therefore recommended to address issues of constipation, bloating and indigestion.
23. Arthritis joint pain
Lemongrass has pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties which suppress the activity of the enzyme cyclooxygenase-2 responsible for inflammation and causing pain. This enzyme is inducible and can be blocked by nonsteroid anti-inflammatory drugs as well.
Gastritis can be caused by many factors such as stress, spices, and cold food among others. Lemongrass tea has traditionally been used as a remedy for this ailment.
25. Vaginal Candidiasis
A study reveals that lemongrass can treat vaginal candidiasis because it contains antimicrobial and antifungal substances that inhibit the development of pathogens. This effect is dose-dependent and can be controlled precisely.
26. A benefit to mothers
Lemongrass contains galactagogue properties that are very useful for mothers who are in the stage of breastfeeding. The galactagogue properties help in stimulating the flow of mother’s milk. Additionally, since lemongrass has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, unhealthy bacteria are restricted from being transmitted to the newborn. However, women who are still pregnant should not ingest lemongrass.
27. Relieves Menstrual Pain in Women
Lemongrass tea provides relief to women during menstrual periods. It facilitates hot flashes that reduce menstrual pain since it has a soothing effect.
28. Naturally Great Hair
Lemongrass tea is very rich in vitamin C and A which are vital for the growth of beautiful hair. The vitamins ensure that those who consume lemongrass tea are capable of having quality hair.
29. Boosts Metabolism and Burns Fat
Lemongrass tea can increase metabolism and promote digestion. The leaves contain polyphenols which enhance the oxidation of body fats. High metabolism leads to the reduction of LDL cholesterol levels and as a result, our arteries become less prone to atherosclerosis.
30. Treatment of Acne
Serving its’ antimicrobial and astringent properties lemongrass can be an ideal therapy for the treatment of acne.
Conclusively, it is clear that lemongrass has a lot of health benefits. Having a cup of lemongrass tea will result in better health outcomes for consumers.
Lemongrass Side Effects
Lemongrass tea is safe for ingestion for most people. However, if you are a pregnant mother, you should avoid it. It may increase menstrual flow and cause miscarriage. Certain bug sprays containing lemongrass have been fatal for children. Thus, it is important to seek advice from a medical practitioner to avoid any complications that arise due to existing conditions.
You may also want to learn about fennel tea for colic.