Medicinal Herb – Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm

Medicinal Herb Post #22 written June 26, 2018

Lemon Balm – Melissa officinalis

This incredible herb is a part of our mint family again. It prefers moist soil and some shade. Harvest anytime for eating or just before it flowers for the highest medicinal quality. Keep cutting any of the mint family herbs and they’ll come back again for additional use. Leaves are the medicine. And it tends to be better behaved than peppermint so it doesn’t spread as fast, but will reseed easily.

Lemon balm is used to calm the nervous and digestive systems. It is good for stress related stomach pain, nausea, bloating and heartburn. It can help with menstrual pain and stress. Use with blue vervain, milky oats tops, rose, and lavender to help one find relief and comfort. It can also be useful with those who suffer from heart palpitations due to stress. Use with motherwort, hawthorn flowers and berries.

It’s a powerful brain herb as it is useful for anxiety, memory, headaches, insomnia, grief, ADHD, irritability and seasonal depression. I love using it with Holy basil, Ashwaghanda and St. John’s Wort for anxiety/depression in loved ones. Lemon balm is the best antiviral for killing the herpes simplex virus. It stops the replication of it on contact. It’s incredibly effective of shingles, chicken pox, herpes and cold sores. I would also take it internally as well.

I’m currently working on improving a salve for anything associated with herpe viral infections, using calendula, lemon balm, St. John’s Wort, and marshmallow. I’m solar infusing the herbs in a jar covered with olive oil. After 2-4 weeks I’ll strain and add 1/4 cup beeswax for every cup of infused oil I have. Then I’ll add vitamin E, lavender and Melissa blend essential oils and put into jars.

It can be used in any digestive formula like colic/gas or a calming nervous system formula. It’s also good as a cold infusion tea or chopped up in a fruit salad.

The only contraindication would be for those with low functioning thyroid because it can lower thyroid function. Bugleweed and Motherwort are two other herbs that also lower thyroid function. However, for those with an overactive thyroid it would be helpful.  It is still safe to use internally short term for those with mild hypothyroid problems if needed, but not for long periods of time.

Emily Saddler

Emily is first a wife to her best friend Ryan, homeschool mom of 7 awesome kids, Holistic Health Practitioner in the state of Utah and Traditional Naturopath outside of the state of Utah, master gardener, yoga/pilates instructor, certified clinical and master herbalist, licensed massage therapist, and doula. She is a very passionate advocate of all things Mother Nature! Emily maintains a blog called “The Organic Farm Girl” where she shares gardening advice, delicious recipes made with fresh, organic ingredients, herbal and natural home care product recipes and loves teaching classes on gardening, plant identification and herbal remedy workshops. Check out the events and classes page for more info.

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