Are you familiar with the Melissa essential oil or the so-called lemon balm oil? In the traditional medicine, this oil took part in the treatment of different health conditions. They include anxiety, insomnia, hypertension, migraines, dementia, herpes and diabetes.
It provides its health benefits when applied both internally or topically.
This essential oil is used in the treatment of herpes simplex virus 1 and 2 or cold sores without the use of antibiotics which can promote resistant bacterial strains. It is also high in potent antimicrobial and antiviral qualities.
11 Melissa Essential Oil’s Health Benefits
1. Fights Alzheimer’s Disease
When it comes to the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, Melissa is definitely the most examined of all essential oils due to its effectiveness. The Newcastle General Hospital’s Institute for Aging and Health has conducted a placebo-controlled trial. This trial had to find out the effectiveness of Melissa oil for agitation in people with serious dementia and people with serious cognitive impairment.
About 72 people with serious dementia were assigned to the Melissa oil or to the placebo treatment group. According to the researchers, there was a 30% reduction of agitation stress in 60% of the Melissa group and in 14% of the placebo-treated group. There was a general improvement in 35% of the patients with Melissa oil and in 11% of those with placebo. This pointed out the fact that essential oil can significantly improve person’s quality of life.
2. Potent Anti-Inflammatory Agent
According to a research, Melissa essential oil can treat different diseases related to pain and inflammation. The Advances in Pharmacological Science has published a study in 2013 which examined the anti-inflammatory qualities of Melissa oil. The study was conducted in rats by trauma-induced hind paw edema.
When administered orally, it provided significant inhibition and reduction of edema or swelling which result from excess fluid in the body tissues.
So, Melissa oil can relieve pain and reduce swelling when applied topically or taken internally.
3. Fights Infections
It is a well-known fact that a frequent use of antimicrobial drugs can lead to antibiotic resistance. However, a research shows that herbal medicines can prevent such antibiotic resistance.
Researchers have examined Melissa oil because it was able to prevent bacterial infections. Some of the most important antimicrobial compounds of Melissa oil include citronellal, citral, and trans-caryophyllene.
According to a study from 2008, Melissa oil showed a higher level of antibacterial activity than lavender oil against a number of Gram-positive bacterias such as candida.
4. Potent Anti-Diabetic Properties
Studies also have shown that Melissa oil is a powerful anti-diabetic and hypoglycemic agent because of the high glucose uptake, the inhibition of gluconeogenesis and adipose tissue in the liver.
The British Journal of Nutrition published a study in 2010, which showed that when administered to mice for 6 weeks, Melissa oil can reduce the level of blood glucose. Also, the glucose tolerance was improved and there were higher serum insulin levels than in the control group.
5. Improves Skin Health
Due to the antifungal and antibacterial qualities, Melissa oil can naturally treat acne, eczema and minor wounds. You just have to apply Melissa oil directly on the affected area and it will heal the conditions caused by fungus and bacteria.
6. Heals Herpes and Many Other Viruses
When having cold sores, Melissa is definitely the perfect herb that will effectively fight the herpes viruses. Further on, it can prevent viral infections especially in people who are resistant to antiviral drugs.
Phytomedicine has published a study in 2008 which found that high amounts of Melissa oil stopped herpes simplex virus both 1 and 2 types in monkey’s kidney cells by a plaque reduction assay.
The researchers also found that this oil is the perfect treatment for herpes removal due to the potent antiviral properties that can penetrate deeply into the skin.
7. Powerful Anti-Tumor Properties
According to a study in 2004, Melissa oil is a powerful anti-tumor agent because it reduced human cancer cell lines in an in vitro study.
Another study published in Cancer Investigation in 2014, stated that Melissa oil is a potential treatment for glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) or the most common tumor of the central nervous system. This study examined the activity of citral, Melissa oil’s major compound in GBM cell lines.
It turned out that this compound reduced viability and induced apoptosis of these cells. So, Melissa oil is a potential natural treatment of cancer.
8. Improves Mood and Fights Depression
Melissa oil is rich in potent hypnotic, antidepressant and sedative qualities which can provide the feeling of warmth and peace. With its uplifting compounds, it can lead to emotional balance.
In 2013, the University of Melbourne has conducted a study which found that Melissa oil can improve depression, anxiety, cognition, and neuroprotectivity.
Also, it can modulate cognitive performance and mood in healthy young people who had no symptoms of toxicity or any side effects. Even with the lowest possible doses, Melissa oil is the best essential oil for the treatment of depression.
9. Reduces High Blood Pressure
Due to the antihyperlipidemic, hypotensive, neuroprotective, antiarrhythmic and hepatoprotective qualities, Melissa oil can lower high levels of blood pressure.
According to a study published in the Research in Cardiovascular Medicine in 2015, this oil was associated with specific electrocardiogram alternations in rats. This is a test that checks the problems with the electrical activity of the heart.
Another study from 2016 showed that Melissa oil can increase the heart’s resistance to injury and reduce the heart rate in injured rats.
10. Lowers Triglyceride Levels
The Journal of Nutrition has published a study in 2012 which suggests that the ingestion of Melissa oil can provide significant benefits for the metabolism. In mice, it slowed the fatty acid synthesis or the process that accumulates fatty buildups in the body and thus reduced the levels of triglycerides.
Another study from 2009 pointed out that the phenolic alkaloids in Melissa oil can inhibit cholesterol synthesis and therefore lower the total cholesterol and lipid levels as well as reduce the level of lipid peroxidation in the liver tissue.
11. Relieves Menstrual Symptoms and PMS
According to a study published in Nursing and Midwifery Studies in 2015, Melissa oil capsules have a remarkable effect on the intensity of the PMS symptoms.
About 100 high school girls took part in a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled trial. This group received a placebo while another intervention group took 1,200 mg Melissa oil capsules during their menstrual cycle for the next three cycles.
The results have shown that there was a remarkable reduction in the PMS symptoms in the intervention group which points out the fact that Melissa oil can effectively reduce the PMS symptoms.
Proper Use of Melissa Oil
You can find this oil both online and in many health stores. Although it is one of the most expensive essential oils, it is definitely worth the price. However, make sure you are not fooled by some cheaper but fake products. A high-quality, 100% pure 5 ml bottles of Melissa essential oil can range from $75-150.
So, read the label very carefully and only choose one from a reputable and trustworthy company. This is especially important if you are about to use the oil internally.
You can diffuse Melissa essential oil at home or in your office, take internally or apply topically. If you have sensitive skin, apply some carrier oil prior to Melissa oil. If taken internally, make sure you start with small doses, about 1 or 2 drops. For extended use, consult your doctor or essential oil coach.
Melissa Essential Oil Home Uses:
- Dementia – diffuse Melissa oil every day or inhale it from the bottle
- Skin Conditions – for eczema, combine 5 drops of Melissa oil and ounce of carrier oil. Apply this mixture on your face. Also, you can add 5 drops to a spray bottle with water or a moisturizer and spritz it on your face.
- Herpes and cold sores – dilute 2-3 drops of Melissa oil and apply them on the affected area.
- Hypoglycemia – take several drops internally in order to improve the glucose levels.
- Anxiety and depression– to fight these conditions, apply or diffuse Melissa oil on the wrists, back of the ears and neck.
- Vertigo and nervousness – apply 2-3 drops on the back of your ears and neck to reduce nausea, nervousness, dizziness and vomiting.
- You can add Melissa oil to your tea or water and take it internally.
- Hypertension – apply the oil topically on the back of the neck or the chest or take 1-2 drops internally.
Origin, History and Chemical Composition of Melissa Plant
Also, known as lemon balm, Melissa essential oil belongs to the Lamicaceae family. Its oils are extracted by a steam distillation of the flowers and the leaves. This plant popular for its medicinal properties is native to the East Mediterranean and West Asian region.
Because of its therapeutic qualities, this herb was traditionally used since ancient times. It is popular for its antiviral, antibacterial, antidepressant and antispasmodic properties. It is characterized by a delicate and lemony scent which provides emotional balance and improve the skin health.
Because of the special compounds, Melissa oil is a powerful antioxidant. According to the researchers, Melissa oil is rich in more than 70 active compounds. They include germacrene, geranial, citronellal, and neral.
Melissa essential oil was used in many scientific studies for memory, Alzheimer’s disease, depression and learning due to its medicinal qualities.
Although it is not widely popular essential oil, it took a significant part in the traditional medicine. For instance, the French Carmelite nuns have used this oil in tonic water in the 14th century.
Paracelsus, a popular physician, philosopher and botanist named this herb “The Elixir of Life” in the 16th century. In the 17th century John Evelyn, writer, and gardener claimed that this oil is sovereign for the brain, strengthens the memory and reduces melancholy.
Avoid using Melissa essential oil during pregnancy because it is an emmenagogue. As we have mentioned before, dilute Melissa oil with a carrier oil (jojoba or coconut oil) prior to application on sensitive skin.
- Melissa essential oil is traditionally used in the treatment of different health conditions. They include anxiety, insomnia, hypertension, migraines, herpes, diabetes and dementia.
- Also, known as lemon balm oil, Melissa essential oil belongs to the Lamicaceae family. Its oils are extracted by a steam distillation of the flowers and the leaves.
- You can apply Melissa essential oil topically, take internally or diffuse it at home. When used for sensitive skin, make sure you diffuse it with a carrier oil before topical application.