Au Natural Factual is back for 2014! Today, we’re talking about Lemongrass, an ingredient I have been loving lately in my hair and body products. It has also always been a favorite scent of mine.
Lemongrass (Cymbopogon Citratus) is a perennial plant known for it’s many medicinal and therapeutic benefits and is indigenous to many areas of South Asia. Reported medicinal benefits of lemongrass are used in treating digestive problems, high blood pressure, fever, body pain, the common cold, cough and exhaustion. Lemongrass is also known for its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antioxidant and astringent properties.
Used when dry, lemongrass can be steeped to make tea, used as medicine as well as flavoring for food. The plant is commonly used as an ingredient in popular South Asian cuisine and is commonly found in soaps and cosmetics as a fragrance. With it’s lemony, citrus scent, lemongrass can also be extracted as an essential oil and applied topically or when used in aromatherapy, often inhaled for muscle pain relief. It is also said that lemongrass has rubefacient properties which may improve blood circulation.
The chemical composition of lemongrass is also interesting in understanding the basis for its many health benefits and natural characteristics:
The main chemical component found in lemongrass is citral, an aromatic compound, also known as lemonal. The compounds myrcene, citronellal, geranyl acetate, nerol and geraniol are found in varying quantities in Citral. Myrcene, geraniol and nerol contribute to lemongrass’ strong fragrance, citronella acts as an insecticide and geranyl acetate is another flavoring agent. –Healthers.org
The presence of Vitamin A in lemongrass can also have benefits for skin. Lemongrass helps to treat acne, brighten dark spots and prevent oily skin. The herb’s astringent and antibacterial properties are also good at reducing skin bacteria and infection. Lemongrass has also been thought to improve poor body odor by controlling excessive sweating.
Some popular, natural products containing lemongrass:
- Acure Organics Lemongrass + Argan Stem Cell Shampoo (my current, favorite shampoo!), $9.99
- Aura Cacia Lemongrass Essential Oil, $6.39
- Dr. Hauschka Lemon Lemongrass Body Oil, $28.95
- Intelligent Nutrients Certified Organic Perfume Spray, $28
- Lotus Wei Infinite Love Perfume, $45
- Rahua Voluminous Conditioner (love this product too!), $34
- Soapwalla Luxurious Body Oil, $28
- Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser, $33
Have you used lemongrass in any products or in food? What are your favorite products or methods using lemongrass?