Lemongrass, also referred to as Cymbopogon citratus or citronella, is an herb. Besides offering proven health benefits, it is used as a flavouring agent for its unique lemon flavour and citrusy aroma.
Lemongrass is a tall and perennial grass with linear leaves growing in thick bunches. The lower stalks and bulbs of the plant have a lemony scent and are used as a flavouring agent. The leaves and the oil of lemongrass plants are utilised to make Ayurvedic and herbal medicines.
Lemongrass contains certain vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, and niacin. It also contains certain essential minerals such as calcium, potassium, copper, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, zinc, and manganese. It also contains flavonoids, antioxidants and phenolic compounds namely, quercetin, luteolin, elemicin, glycosides, kaempferol, catechol, caffeic acid, and chlorogenic acid.
100 gm of lemongrass contains 99 calories, 25 gm of carbohydrates, 1.8 gm of protein, 0.5 gm of fats, 6 mg of sodium, 65 mg of calcium, 2.23 mg of zinc, 8.17 mg of iron, 723 mg of potassium, 2.6 mg of vitamin C, 101 mg of phosphorus, and 60 mg of magnesium.
Potential Health Benefits of Lemongrass
1/5. Boosts oral health
Lemongrass stalks are chewed to enhance dental health. The anti-fungal, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties of lemongrass helps fight gum diseases, inflammation of the gums, and cavities.
2/5. Prevents anemia
1. The presence of antioxidants and nutritional content of copper, thiamine, folic acid, zinc, iron, etc in lemongrass helps in boosting erythropoiesis (production of red blood cells) thus helps in treating anaemia.
2. Lemongrass helps in maintaining the haemoglobin levels thus, preventing anaemia.
3/5. Enhances digestive health
1. The essential oils of lemongrass possess anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties that fight against the infections caused by several pathogens.
2. The essential oil of lemongrass aids protects the stomach lining against damage from aspirin and ethanol. The regular use of aspirin causes gastric ulcers. Thus, lemongrass is beneficial in treating gastric ulcers.
3. The citral component of Lemongrass helps to digest food thus, improving digestion.
4. Lemongrass possesses anti-inflammatory properties that help treat nausea, diarrhoea, stomach aches, constipation, and ulcerative colitis.
5. Lemongrass is helpful in indigestion, bloating, and other digestive complaints.
4/5. Regulates high blood pressure
Lemongrass decreases high systolic blood pressure. The potassium content of lemongrass accelerates urine production, which in turn stimulates the blood circulation and reduces blood pressure.
5/5. Other possible benefits…
Apart from the health benefits mentioned above, lemongrass also produces a few more such as Controls dandruff, promotes mental health, helps in removal of toxins from the body, boosts metabolism and burns fat, heals cold and flu, relieves menstrual pain, helps in diabetes treatment, fights cancer, enhances kidney functioning, promotes deep sleep, treats yeast infections, reduces anxiety, treats headaches, heals sore throat.
Lemongrass is also beneficial for boosting hair health, improve skin health, lower cholesterol, reduce fever, treat infections, reduce aches, relieve pain & inflammation, boost immunity, treat oedema, beneficial for breastfeeding, reduce varicosity, preventing dementia and Alzheimer diseases, HIV infected patients, relieving symptoms of post menopausal syndrome and it also acts as a diuretic.
Lemongrass is full of prven anti-fungal, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
How to use Lemongrass?
Lemongrass is used in several different ways to offer the lemony flavour, some of them are as follows:
- Add to stir-fries.
- Lemongrass Oil.
- Add to salads or soups.
- Make Lemongrass Ice-Tea.
- Prepare Green-Curry Thai Paste.
- Infused in liquid for steaming seafood.
- Pairing with other spices and ingredients.
- In pesto, dipping sauces, marinades, and dressings.
- Make a paste and add to curry dishes and other dishes.
- In Wet Curries, Soups, Stocks, Stews, and Simmered Sauces.
How to make Lemongrass Tea?
Take 4 cups of water and bring the water to a boil.
Add 2 cups of chopped lemongrass stalks and boil it for around 5 minutes.
Simmer it for another 5 minutes by reducing the heat.
Strain the liquid, separating the stalks.
Stir in ¼ cup of sugar.
Serve lemongrass tea warm or chilled.