When I smell the herb yellow verbena, also called the lemon verbena, the first thing that comes to mind are those green translucent Jolly Rancher candies that I used to eat as a child. I’m not quite sure if I’ve ever experienced such a delicious smell from an herb before.
Health Benefits of Lemon Verbena
Well, amazing scent aside, yellow verbena or lemon verbena, native to South America, has quite a few health benefits packed into this pungent herb. The plant looks very similar to your average mint plant — perhaps like the common lemon mint — and a tea can be made out of its leaves just like any other mint plant.
Here are a few health benefits of Yellow Verbena:
- Helps to soothe upset stomachs
- Aids in calming and relaxing the nervous system
- May help to reduce fevers
- Good for coughs and irritated throats
- Treat candida
- Relegate menstrual cycle and lessen PMS
- Relieve congestion, asthma
- Cold and flu relief
Cindy Ausbrooks has listed some “more prominent folk medicine uses” of Lemon Verbena:
Reducing Fevers – Fresh or dried, lemon verbena leaves made into herbal tea are commonly used by herbalists to reduce fevers in children and adults.
Relieving Indigestion – Lemon verbena tea is a common folk remedy for relieving heart burn or indigestion, and is reported to have a tonic effect on the digestive tract.
Soothing Anxiety and Insomnia – Believed to relax the body and mind, lemon verbena is used as a mild sedative during times of stress or to help with sleeplessness.
A Natural Remedy for a Nasty Cold
It has also been said that yellow verbena has properties to naturally lift your mood and well being. Though it is not recommended to replace your current medications for yellow verbena unless prescribed by your doctor, this herb can be a powerful addition to your natural remedies arsenal to protect you in this upcoming winter season. The power of this herb lies in it’s ability to fight and prevent colds — and all of the symptoms that ensue from a nasty cold.
Lemon Verbena Tea
Try brewing a yellow verbena tea by adding a handful of leaves into a pot of already-boiled water for about 10 minutes. Make sure to keep a lid on the brew to protect the essential oils. Then strain and enjoy!
Here are a few culinary tips for using yellow/lemon verbena:
- Packed with delicious citrus flavor, thinly sliced leaves (of lemon verbena) add zest and aroma to fish, salads, and steamed vegetables.
- Stuff a jar with lemon verbena leaves, fill it with water, and sit it in the sun to brew a refreshing tea for summer sipping.
- For hot tea by the cup, steep 1/2 cup of leaves in 1 cup hot water.
- Transform cookies or cakes into lemony treats by mixing bruised lemon verbena leaves into sugar the night before baking. Strain out leaves prior to mixing recipe.
David Askaripour, a prominent blogger based in New York, writes on the subject of natural healing among other things. His work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Television Talk Shows, books and local news channels.