Melissa essential oil, also known as lemon balm oil, is used in traditional medicine to treat a number of health concerns, including insomnia, anxiety, migraines, hypertension, diabetes, herpes and dementia.
The lemon-scented oil can be applied topically, taken internally or diffused at home, office, or in the car.
One of the most well-known Melissa essential oil benefits is its ability to treat cold sores, or herpes simplex virus 1 and 2 naturally and without antibiotics. Its antiviral and microbial properties are only some of the potent and therapeutic qualities of this valued essential oil.
Benefits of Melissa Essential Oil
1) Improves Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Diseases
Melissa Oil is the most studied of the essential oils for its ability to serve as a natural treatment for Alzheimer’s and it’s very likely one of the most effective. Scientist at New Castle General Hospital conducted a placebo-controlled trail to determine the value of Melissa oil for agitation in people with severe dementia, which is frequent and major management problems, especially for patients with severe cognitive impairment. Seventy-two patients with clinically significant agitation in the context of severe dementia were randomly assigned to the Melissa Essential Oil or the placebo treatment group.
Researchers found that 60 percent of the Melissa Oil group and 14 percent of the placebo treated group experienced a 30 percent reduction of agitation scores. There was an overall improvement in agitation in 35% of patients receiving Melissa oil and 11% in those with placebo, suggesting that quality of life was improve significantly with essential oil treatment.
2) Possesses Anti-inflammatory Activity
Research has shown that Melissa oil can be used to treat various diseases associated with inflammation and pain. A 2013 study published in Advances in Pharmacological Science investigated the anti-inflammatory properties of Melissa essential oil by using experimental trauma-induced hind paw edema in rats. The anti-inflammatory properties of oral administration of Melissa oil showed a significant reduction and inhibition of edema, which is swelling caused by excess fluid that is trapped in the body’s tissue.
The results of this study and many like it suggest that Melissa oil can be taken internal or topically to reduce swelling and relieve pain due to the anti-flammatory activity.
3) Prevents and Treats Infections
As many of us already know, the widespread use of antimicrobial agents cause resistant bacterial strains, which can seriously compromise the effectiveness of antibiotic treatment thanks to this antibiotic resistance. Research suggests that the use of herbal medicine might be a precautionary measure to prevent the development of resistance to synthetic antibiotic that are associated with therapeutic failure.
Melissa oil has been evaluated by researchers for its ability to stop bacterial infections. The most important identified compounds in Melissa oil that are well known for their anti-microbial effects are citral, citronella and trans-caryophyllene. A 2008 study showed that Melissa oil exhibited a higher degree of anti-bacterial activity than did lavender oil against Gram-positive bacterial strains, including candida.
4) Anti-diabetic Effects
Studies suggest that Melissa oil is an efficient hypoglycemic and anti-diabetic agent, probably due to enhance glucose uptake and metabolism in the liver, along with adipose tissue and the inhibition of gluconeogenesis in the liver. A 2010 study published in the British Journal of Nutrition found that when mice were administered Melissa essential oil for six weeks, they showed significantly reduced blood glucose levels, improved glucose tolerance and significantly higher serum insulin levels compared with the control group, all which can reduce diabetic symptoms.
5) Promotes Skin Health
Melissa oil is used for naturally treating eczema, acne and minor wounds, as it has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. In studies that involve topical use of Melissa oil, healing times were found to be statistically better in the groups treated with lemon balm oil.
It’s gentle enough to apply directly to the skin and helps clear up skin conditions that are caused by bacteria or fungus.
6) Treats Herpes and Other Viruses
Melissa oil is often the herb of choice for treating cold sores as it’s effective at fighting viruses in the herpes virus family. It can be used to inhibit the spread of viral infections, which can be especially helpful for people who have developed a resistance to commonly used antiviral agents.
7) Serves as a Potential Anti-Tumor Agent
A 2009 study published in Phytomedicine found that higher concentrations of Melissa Essential Oil, nearly abolished herpes simplex virus type 1 and 2 completely, when it was tested on monkey kidney cells using a plaque reduction assay. Researchers suggested that Melissa oil serves as a suitable topical treatment for getting rib of herpes because it has antiviral effects and is able to penetrate the skin due to its lipophilic properties.
7) Serves as a Potential Anti-Tumor Agent
A 2009 study found that Melissa oil has potential as an anti-tumor agent, as evidence by a reduction of human cancer cells lines when evaluated in an in vitro study. Another study, conducted in 2016 and published in Cancer Investigation found that Melissa oil may be potential interest for treatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) which are tumors that arise from the supportive tissue of the human brain. The study investigated the activity of Melissa oil and its major component citral in (GBM) cell lines. Both Melissa oil and citral decreased the viability and induced apoptosis of GBM cells with antioxidant effects, showcasing its potential as a natural cancer treatment.
8) Boost Mood and Aid in Fighting Depression
Melissa Essential Oil has anti-depressive, hypnotic and sedative properties, and it may create a feeling of peace and warmth. It can provide emotional balance and has uplifting compounds. A 2013 study conducted at the University of Melbourne found that the effect of Melissa essential oil shown to help improve anxiety, depression, neuro-protectivity and cognition. Melissa oil has been shown to modulate mood and cognitive performance in healthy young volunteers, who reported no side effects or symptoms of toxicity.