Lemon Verbena
VERBENA CITRONNEEverveine, Kidron, Aloysia triphylla

Aloysia triphylla =
Lippia citriodora


The lemon verbena plant is a shrub native to temperate and subtropical areas of South America (Peru, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay).
It is quite common in the pre-Andean regions where it has several local names: Kidron, hierba luisa or verbena de Indias.

It was introduced in southern Spain in the 17th century and then spread into southern Europe, North Africa and the USA.

The fragrant lemon verbena or lapses in areas with cold or dry season and may reach 2 to 4 m high, leaves, lanceolate with an apex and a marked margin smooth or slightly indented, are borne by groups of 2 to 4 , most often 3 (hence the name triphylla).
The terminal inflorescence in loose tops made of flowers lipped pink or lilac small.
The fruit that does not always reach maturity is a drupe containing two seeds.
When it is warm the lemon verbena has a strong lemony smell the leaves crinkled also have this characteristic smell of lemon.

The leaves contain: Kidron, verbena, Aloysia triphylla

* Flavonoids
* Acid-phenol
* About 0.25% essential oil, yellow and smell of lemon, whose composition is dominated by citral (35%), with limonene, linalool, terpineol, cineole and caryophyllene. There, as in any essential oil, many other terpenoids but in small quantities.

The chemical composition of essential oil varies according to culture conditions but still dominated by citral.

Flavonoids and phenolic acids are antioxidants, free radical scavengers. An experimental study shows that the infusion of lemon verbena trap especially super oxide radicals and less hydroxyl radicals

The terpenoids of the essential oil are:

* Bacteriostatic and bactericidal, antiviral and antifungal (active Candida albicans)
* Stomachic, eupeptic
* Calming the central nervous system (sedation)

A Japanese study shows that essential oils of Cymbopogon citratus (lemongrass) and Aloysia triphylla (lemon verbena) were bactericidal for Helicobacter pylori at a concentration of 0.01% and a pH between 4.0 and 5.0.
These two essential oils, chemically neighbors, both contain a lot of citral. Moreover Helicobacter pylori responsible for many stomach ulcers does not acquire resistance to these essential oils, then it tends to become resistant to many antibiotics.

The infusion of Lippia citriodora (which contains both phenolic compounds and some terpenoids):

* Aids digestion
* Is slightly sedative
* Has anti-inflammatory

verveine, cedron,  aloysa triphylla


Widely used in some countries of South America where one can easily find tea bags of "Kidron".
You can also use green leaves or dried:
one to two teaspoons of dried leaves per cup of hot water, infuse for one minute.
For 1 liter infusion after 20g of dried leaves or 80 g of fresh leaves.

This infusion is useful:

* To facilitate digestion especially in cases of chronic dyspepsia
* To facilitate the onset of sleep in this case we can double or triple the dose of leaf (3 to 5 teaspoons per cup of hot water) and flavored with honey
* To relieve digestive problems with cramps in addition to a more specific treatment
* Thirst for calm in general and as a diaphoretic in fever cases
* As a beverage "comfort" in knowing she has a more powerful anti-free radicals

Essential oil:

The essential oil of Lemon Verbena is not always easy to find and can be falsified by the synthetic citral.

we consider:

orally (2 to 6 drops per day) as:

* Calming and antidepressant
* Stomachic and facilitating digestion
* Useful in cases of gastrointestinal infection in addition to antibiotic treatment or other essential oils, there is still no clinical study to my knowledge, the use of this essential oil of lemongrass fragrant to treat peptic ulcer

For external:
unction in skin (a few drops) or mixed with massage oil for its calming, relaxing.

In Argentina we prepare liquor "Kidron" (aperitif and digestive) and:

Ethanol 60 °: 600 g
Dried leaves of lemon verbena: 60 g
Sugar: 350 g
Water: 165 g
Macerate the leaves in alcohol for 9 days
filter and then add half a liter of sugar syrup
kept in an airtight container.

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