I belong to the citrus family. I am a fruit originating from India, but nowadays I am also cultivated in parts of Italy and Spain. You’ll find me growing on trees with dark green leaves, and I have a beautiful bright yellow color. Also, I am often used in mouthing-watering fish dishes to give them more flavor. Can you guess who I am?
The Citrus limon Osbeck, better known as the lemon!
The lemon is a fruit rich in vitamin C and grows mainly in Mediterranean countries such as Italy and Spain. In the kitchen, lemon juice and zest are often used for pies, cakes, and various exotic dishes… And on a hot summer day who doesn’t like an ice-cold glass of water with a slice of lemon? The fruit is also a popular choice for home remedies ranging from antiperspirant to teeth whitener. And last but not least, the humble lemon is often used homeopathically for sore throats, congested livers, and digestion problems.
The benefits of lemon essential oil
Lemon essential oil is composed of lemon zest. It contains the natural elements of limonene, aldehyde content, and it also includes sesquiterpenes, flavonoids, furocoumarins; therefore, the composition of lemon essential oil has some unique properties: it’s lipolytic, antiseptic and cleansing, nerve calming, aids with digestion, and regulates circulation.
Lemons are known for their ability to cleanse toxins from the body. The essential oil purifies the air and reduces the risk of infectious diseases. Furthermore, lemon oil has a fresh, uplifting scent. It is often found in everyday household products containing citrus (multipurpose cleaners, dishwasher tablets, air fresheners, etc). Additionally, lemon essential oil is very popular in the kitchen and can be found in natural yoghurts. Finally, it has an important place in the medical world as it treats indigestion, minor liver and pancreas damage, boosts the immune system, relieves nausea, and treats colitis disease.
The oil also has many powerful antioxidant and anti-aging benefits for the skin and hair; it reduces varicose veins and cellulite. Lemon oil can help with oily skin problems like acne, soothe symptoms of rosacea flare-ups and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. It is often found in hair care products; lemons have tremendous cleansing agents that can treat greasy scalps, strengthen brittle hair and reduce dandruff.
Finally, lemon essential oils can help strengthen damaged and peeling nails.
There are some drawbacks of using this oil. As with any citrus extract, lemon oil can cause severe skin irritation in some people. It should never be applied undiluted on the skin; otherwise, there is a risk of photosensitivity. This means it can cause some severe skin damage when exposed to direct sunlight. Some of the adverse reactions range from redness, blisters and even burns. It is therefore advisable to avoid using products containing lemon essential oils during or 12 hours before exposure to the sun.
The oil is entirely safe to use in moderation for children over 3, during pregnancy and for women who are breastfeeding.