Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon)
Lemongrass growing in the tropics (Zanzibar). Lemongrass is an aromatic tropical grass cultivated primarily for culinary use. There are two of the 55 species in the genus Cymbopogon that are used almost interchangeably as lemongrass. Lemongrass is a plant. The leaves and the oil are used to make medicine. Lemongrass is commonly taken orally, applied directly to the skin, or inhaled as aromatherapy for many different conditions.
But there is limited scientific research to support any of its common uses. In food and beverages, lemongrass is used as a flavoring. For example, lemongrass leaves are commonly used as “lemon” flavoring in herbal teas. In manufacturing, lemongrass is used as a fragrance in deodorants, soaps, and cosmetics. Lemongrass is also used in making vitamin A and natural citral.
Lemongrass has traditionally been used as a fragrance and flavoring, and for a wide variety of medical conditions. However, clinical trials are lacking to support any uses. Limited clinical or experimental studies have shown antifungal and insecticidal activity, as well as potential anticarcinogenic activity, while suggested hypotensive and hypoglycemic actions have not been confirmed.