Citronella is most widely known for its use in mosquito preventative tiki torches, but it is also a healthy herb with a unique set of properties that mainstream medicine has yet to recognize in most cases. In its popular essential oil form, citronella is made from distilling the Asian plant Cymbopogon, a fragrant grass that means “lemon balm” in French due to its citrusy aroma.
In the Far East, citronella is used in a restorative manner among herbalists for its ability to treat various medical and other health conditions. With its intoxicating, floral scent, citronella is packed full of beneficial healing compounds that are versatile and useful enough to earn its place in any home medicine cabinet.
Citronella for Stress Relief
The aromatic compounds of this favorite plant are often incorporated into all manner of home “self-care” products such as candles, lotions, soaps, incense sticks, rub-ons, and much more.
In each of these forms, citronella provides the user with a burst of stress-relieving aromatherapy.
Aside from the aforementioned floral scent, it also has notes of woodsiness and conjures up feelings of carefree summer days relaxing on the backyard patio or front porch, blowing bubbles or catching fireflies in glass jars. Citronella is also said to help fight against colds and to uplift those who suffer from depression, and those with flu-like symptoms.
It can help prevent anxiety, muscle spasms, and stomach aches as well according to VeryWellHealth, a medically-reviewed healthcare site. Citronella can also be used for its anti-inflammatory properties and has shown promise in helping to heal rheumatoid arthritis as well. These are just a sampling of its benefits for relieving stress and healing the body in myriad ways, especially when applied topically.
The important thing to keep in mind when doing so, however, is that citronella is a strong oil that should always be diluted with a carrier oil such as coconut oil to be on the safe side (some herbalists recommend an amount as low as 2% maximum, consult a naturopathic doctor before trying this).
Citronella for Beauty Benefits
With its uplifting scent, citronella essential oil is excellent for spraying in the vicinity of a room or furniture that needs freshening up, and can help lift moods while deodorizing and refreshing the home.
It also goes to work in countless areas where healing is needed, including areas where head and body lice are present. Regular use of citronella oil can also slow the look of aging while enhancing the youthful appearance of the skin, and it has even been said by essential oil experts to improve the skin’s absorption of moisture.
For hair, citronella oil is an excellent addition to a shampoo or conditioning product, as it can help protect your hair from sun damage, boosts hair volume, and removes tangles while conditioning the hair leaving it smooth, silky, and lustrous.
Citronella has also been lauded by herbalists for its ability to contribute to healthy weight loss, and it may help with digestion and boosting the metabolism as well.
Citronella for Immunity
While not thought of as an immune booster, citronella is nevertheless a Swiss Army knife for the wide variety of immune system-boosting effects it provides. As you may have guessed from its usefulness as an insect repellent, citronella is powerful against all forms of invaders and is especially potent as an antifungal agent.
A 2013 study found that extracts from the plant are effective against a common fungus known to cause lung and sinus infections in people with weakened immune systems, Aspergillus niger, according to Healthline.com.
The study found that the oil is capable of destroying the cell wall of the fungus and can kill organisms within the cell that lead to infection. Another study tested citronella against 12 different types of fungi and found that it was capable of killing all 12.
It also found that it was capable of being effective against 15 of 22 different strains of bacteria as well.
As the complexity of these studies and results shows, winning the battle at the cellular level against hostile bacteria, fungal infections, viruses and other invaders is a complex and never-ending battle, which is why many different types of natural medicines should be utilized whenever possible. Citronella may not be the first one that comes to mind for these purposes, but the results speak for themselves: this is a high potency natural medicine that works wonders for keeping the body and environment clean, and your immune system well-stocked to take on any number of threats.
These reasons and more are why we chose to include Citronella as one of the 18 ingredients in Radiate Immunity. A blend of 18 botanicals for circumventing stress, and compromised lung and immune health. The other 17 ingredients have many benefits and value on their own for stress adaption, repairing the gut lining, and fortifying the immune system as a whole. Learn more at RadiateImmunity.com.