Lemon Balm Information & Purchase
Also Known As:
Balm, Bálsamo de Limón, Cure-All, Dropsy Plant, Honey Plant, Melisa, Melissa, Melissae Folium, Mélisse, Mélisse Citronnelle, Mélisse Officinale, Melissenblatt, Monarde, Sweet Balm, Sweet Mary, Toronjil.
CAUTION: See separate listing for Oswego Tea.
Melissa officinalis. Family: Lamiaceae/Labiatae.
People Use This For:
Orally, lemon balm is used for anxiety, insomnia, dyssomnia, restlessness, dyspepsia, bloating, flatulence, colic, and for attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Lemon balm is also used for Graves' disease, dysmenorrhea, cramps, headache, toothache, sores, tumors, and insect bites. It is also used orally for Alzheimer's disease, hysteria and melancholia, chronic bronchial mucous membrane inflammation, nervous palpitations, vomiting, and high blood pressure.
As an inhalant, lemon balm is used as aroma therapy for Alzheimer's disease.
Topically, lemon balm is used for cold sores (herpes labialis).
In foods and beverages, the extract and oil of lemon balm are used for flavoring.
LIKELY SAFE ...when used orally in amounts commonly found in foods. Lemon balm has Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) status in the US.
POSSIBLY SAFE ...when used orally or topically and appropriately, short-term. Lemon balm has been used with apparent safety for up to 4 months.
There is insufficient reliable information available about the safety of lemon balm when used long-term.
CHILDREN: POSSIBLY SAFE ...when used orally and appropriate, short-term. A specific combination product providing lemon balm leaf extract 80 mg and valerian root extract 160 mg (Euvegal forte, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) 1-2 tablets once or twice daily has been safely used in children under age 12 years for about a month. Preliminary clinical research also suggests that a specific multi-ingredient product containing fennel 164 mg, lemon balm 97 mg, and German chamomile 178 mg (ColiMil) is safe in infants when used for up to a week.
PREGNANCY AND LACTATION: Insufficient reliable information available; avoid using.
Alzheimer's disease. Taking a standardized extract of lemon balm orally, daily for 4 months, seems to reduce agitation and improve symptoms of mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease on standard Alzheimer's disease rating scales.
Colic. A clinical trial shows that breast-fed infants with colic who are given a specific multi-ingredient product containing fennel 164 mg, lemon balm 97 mg, and German chamomile 178 mg (ColiMil) twice daily for a week have reduced crying times compared to placebo.
Dyspepsia. A specific combination product containing lemon balm (Iberogast, Medical Futures, Inc) seems to improve symptoms of dyspepsia. The combination includes lemon balm plus peppermint leaf, German chamomile, caraway, licorice, clown's mustard plant, celandine, angelica, and milk thistle. A meta-analysis of studies using this combination product suggests that taking 1 mL orally three times daily over a period of 4 weeks significantly reduces severity of acid reflux, epigastric pain, cramping, nausea, and vomiting compared to placebo.
Herpes labialis (cold sores). Applying a lip balm containing 1% lemon balm extract seems to shorten healing time, prevent infection spread, and reduce symptoms of recurring herpes labialis.
Sleep. Taking a specific combination product providing lemon balm leaf extract 80 mg and valerian root extract 160 mg (Euvegal forte, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) three times daily appears to improve the quality and quantity of sleep in healthy people.
INSUFFICIENT RELIABLE EVIDENCE to RATE
Dyssomnia. Preliminary evidence suggests that a specific combination product providing lemon balm leaf extract 80 mg and valerian root extract 160 mg (Euvegal forte, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) 1-2 tablets once or twice daily might decrease symptoms in children under age 12 years who have pathological restlessness or dyssomnia. More evidence is needed to rate lemon balm for this use.
Mechanism of Action:
The applicable part of lemon balm is the leaf and leaf oil. Lemon balm seems to have sedative, antioxidant, and antiviral effects. Lemon balm contains citronellal, neral, and geranial monoterpenoid aldehydes; flavonoids and polyphenolic compounds (including rosmarinic acid); and monoterpene glycosides. These substances may contribute to the behavioral effects of lemon balm dried leaf and essential oil. Some research suggests lemon balm might have acetylcholine receptor activity with both nicotinic and muscarinic binding properties. Clinical research suggests that lemon balm induces a calming effect and reduces alertness.
Lemon balm is used in aroma therapy. The essential oil of lemon balm contains terpenes, which are rapidly absorbed through the lungs and cross the blood-brain barrier. In addition, these may possess cholinergic activity or act on gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors.
Preliminary research in animals shows that taking a specific combination of herbs (Ob-X) containing lemon balm, white mulberry, and yin chen reduces body weight, total cholesterol, and triglycerides.
Orally, lemon balm is well tolerated. It can cause nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dizziness, and wheezing. Topically, there is one report of irritation and one report of exacerbation of herpes symptoms when lemon balm was applied.
Interactions with Herbs & Supplements:
HERBS AND SUPPLEMENTS WITH SEDATIVE PROPERTIES: Theoretically, concomitant use with herbs that have sedative properties might enhance therapeutic and adverse effects. Some of these supplements include 5-HTP, calamus, California poppy, catnip, hops, Jamaican dogwood, kava, St. John's wort, skullcap, valerian, yerba mansa, and others.
Interactions with Drugs:
CNS DEPRESSANTS Interaction Rating = Moderate Be cautious with this combination.
ETHANOL: Theoretically, lemon balm might increase the sedative effects of ethanol.
Interactions with Foods:
Interactions with Lab Tests:
Interactions with Diseases or Conditions:
SURGERY: Lemon balm has CNS depressant effects. Theoretically, lemon balm might cause additive CNS depression when combined with anesthesia and other medications during and after surgical procedures. Tell patients to discontinue lemon balm at least 2 weeks before elective surgical procedures.
ORAL: For mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease, 60 drops per day of a standardized lemon balm extract, prepared 1:1 in 45% alcohol, has been used.
For improving sleep in healthy adults, a specific combination product providing lemon balm leaf extract 80 mg and valerian root extract 160 mg (Euvegal forte, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) 3 times daily has been used for up to 30 days.
For colic in infants, a specific multi-ingredient product containing fennel 164 mg, lemon balm 97 mg, and German chamomile 178 mg (ColiMil) twice daily for a week has been used.
For dyspepsia, a specific combination product containing lemon balm (Iberogast, Medical Futures, Inc) and several other herbs has been used in a dose of 1 mL three times daily.
For dyssomnia in children, a specific combination product providing lemon balm leaf extract 80 mg and valerian root extract 160 mg (Euvegal forte, Dr. Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) 1-2 tablets once or twice daily has been used.
TOPICAL: For herpes labialis (cold sores), the cream or ointment containing 1% of a 70:1 lyophilized aqueous extract is usually applied two to four times daily from first sign of prodrome to a few days after the lesions have healed.
Lemon balm is a perennial herb from the mint family. The leaves have a mild lemon aroma.
General Certificate Of Analysis (COA) less manufacture date and batch number provided for different product strengths if the link is not available or manufacture date and batch number is required use the email us box to request Certificate Of Analysis (COA) emailed. Any questions about product or wholesale pricing for twenty five kilos or more. Please be sure to use product ID, Trade Name and Scientific Name.
- Specification Sheet Lemon Balm Powder
Purchase Gift Certificate
"These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease."