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Lemon Balm Notes
Lemon Balm. It isn't just for herpes anymore.
Lemon balm has long been a treatment for herpes in Europe, used to control cold sores, shingles and other forms of the virus. Lemon balm can be taken orally as well as topically to control outbreaks. This treatment is not as well known in the US but is gaining in popularity. Lemon balm has many anti-viral components and can stop the herpes virus from replicating in your body. But there are many other uses for this member of the mint family.
Test Anxiety, Lemon balm has always had a reputation for calming: reducing stress and even helping with sleep problems. This spurred a study at Northumbria University in England where students were given either lemon balm or a placebo before tests. The study lasted several weeks and the students using lemon balm had significantly improved scores compared to the placebo group. The thinking is that the calming effect of the herb reduced anxiety and allowed the students to concentrate.
Faulty Thyroid Another European use for Lemon balm is to teat thyroid problems. Whether overactive or under-active, constituents of lemon balm have the ability to regulate thyroid hormone production.
Chronic Fatigue Because of the strong anti-viral elements and the ability to regulate the thyroid, lemon balm has recently gained popularity in treating Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Herbalists often combine lemon balm with the Ayurvedic herb, ashwaganda in treating this condition.
Anxiety. Some research shows that taking a specific lemon balm product (Cyracos) reduces symptoms in people with anxiety disorders. A product containing lemon balm plus 12 other ingredients has also been shown to reduce symptoms of anxiety such as nervousness or edginess.
Cold sores. Applying a lip balm containing 1% lemon balm extract seems to shorten healing time, prevent infection spread, and reduce symptoms of recurring cold sores. Colic in breast-fed infants. A clinical trial shows that breast-fed infants with colic who are given a specific multi-ingredient product containing fennel, lemon balm, and German chamomile (ColiMil) twice daily for a week cry for a shorter period of time than other breast-fed infants with colic.
Dementia. Some research shows that taking lemon balm by mouth daily for 4 months seems to reduce agitation and improve symptoms of mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease. In one study, applying a lotion containing lemon balm oils to the face and hands reduced agitation in people with dementia. However, other research found no benefit.
Upset stomach (dyspepsia), when a specific combination of lemon balm and peppermint leaf, German chamomile, caraway, licorice, clown's mustard plant, celandine, angelica, and milk thistle (Iberogast, Medical Futures, Inc) is used. This combination seems to improve acid reflux (GERD), stomach pain, cramping, nausea, and vomiting.
Insomnia. Taking a lemon balm by itself or along with other ingredients might improve the length and quality of sleep in healthy people and in those with insomnia or sleeping disorders.
Stress. Some research suggests that taking one 600 mg dose of lemon balm increases calmness and awareness in adults during a stress test. Other research suggests that larger lemon balm doses reduce anxious behavior in children, but not lower doses. Another study suggests that taking a combination product containing valerian and lemon balm might lower anxiety when taken at a lower dose, but might increase anxiety when taken at a higher dose. Other research found that taking a lemon balm product for 4 weeks lowered agitation and edginess in people with anxiety caused by stress.
Lemon balm, being a member of the mint family, is very easy to grow. The leaves can be quickly dried in an oven and crumbled for tea. You can also use it in a standardized liquid extract: Lemon Balm Alcohol-free Liquid Extract. If you, or anyone you know, suffers from any of these conditions, or needs a leg up in taking tests, give it a try. There are no noted safety warnings or interactions.
When buying herbal medicines be sure to look at the ingredients. Greenbush herbs have no fillers and are never irradiated or sprayed with pesticides. The extracts are alcohol free, medicinal strength and holistically balanced. Manufactured in the US. FDA inspected. Good Manufacturing Practices guidelines. Why not buy the best. Your health depends on it.
Greenbush Bio-Chelated Extracts: Until Bio-Chelation there was simply no good way to make a potent alcohol-free extract. Greenbush alcohol free extracts begin with organic alcohol regardless of whether the final product contains alcohol or not. After finishing the first step in the plant extraction, an additional step is performed to remove the alcohol. This is done by utilizing a proprietary cold extraction process called Bio-Chelation®. Bio-Chelation® describes the cold process vacuum distillation method, which removes all the alcohol initially used to obtain the good herbal extract.
Holistically Balanced Herbal Extracts: It is important to note that a cold extraction process, as opposed to a heat extraction process, helps maintain the full spectrum, or Holistic BalanceTM of the plant's constituents in the final product. The end-result is an alcohol-free extract containing the essential properties of the complete herb in a base of vegetable glycerin and water. (Vegetable glycerin is used because it can help to bind certain plant constituents, is natural to the body, easily absorbed, tastes sweet without affecting blood sugar levels, and acts as a good solvent and carrier for the plant constituents).
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