Plant Diet: Let's Talk Lemon Balm

New blog series...once a month I'll be blogging about my plant diets. First off, some definitions:

Plant diet: dieting a plant (an herbal infusion) for a set period of time, typically 2 weeks

Herbal infusion: 1/8 cup to 1/4 cup of any herb allowed to steep in water for 4 to 10 hours, usually overnight

Secondly, I'll post these once a month at the completion of the plant diet. Another blog post will be a nature poem that accompanies the blog post to give our non-white nature poets some recognition for their revolutionary work. 

Aiight, now let's get to it.

Plant I dieted: Lemon balm

Length of my plant diet 2 weeks

How it made me feel?: Great. Lemon balm uplifted my spirits, kept me very calm, and eased nervousness at a very hectic time in my life. I recommend this plant for others who are dealing with some anxiety.

The infusion process:  The infusion process was easy. I poured 24 ounces of hot water over 1/4 cup of Lemon balm, left it in my mason jar on my counter top overnight. The next morning I'd strain the lemon balm infusion into another mason jar and I'd drink the infusion throughout the day. Usually drinking 1 cup at a time.

Scent? Taste?: It smells a lot like lemon. And has a lemony, mint taste. It's very refreshing, so it's easy to drink.


The science:

Official name for Lemon balm: Melissa officinalis

Lemon balm is a part of the mint family and it has a lemon scent.

Used for: Easing menstrual cramps, soothing digestive diseases (bloating, upset stomach, intestinal gas, vomiting) and headaches. Research also shows Lemon balm is helpful in the case of nervous breakdown (like hysteria, melancholia) (explains why it made me feel so much better when I was stressed).

How does it do it?: Lemon balm has anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and carminative effects.

Anti-inflammatory: Reduces inflammation

Antispasmodic: Relieves involuntary muscles spasms

Carminative: Relieves flatulence (gas) 

Lemon balm's anti-inflammatory and carminative properties make it ideal for soothing menstrual cramps and digestive issues.

The antispasmodic properties of Lemon balm make it ideal for use when treating anxiety and stress - it treats the contractions of the organs. 

What else can Lemon balm do?: Some use Lemon balm to treat Alzheimer's in aromatherapy, sleeplessness and it may even help treat cold sores. 

Fun fact: Extract from Lemon balm is the lemon flavor you taste in your food. At least they didn't lie to you with their chemical artificial flavorings like they usually do. 

 "I had my ups and downs but I always find the inner strength to pull myself up. I was served lemons, but I made lemonade."  - Lemonade

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