Lemon is believed to have originated in northwestern India, but what is known for certain is that it arrived in southern Italy around 200 AD. It was spread throughout the Mediterranean by the Arabs, and Columbus took it to the New World. It was a real life-saver for sailors who were dying of scurvy, so it was a mandatory part of food supplies of all British ships. Lemon, Citrus limonum, is so omnipresent today that we can hardly imagine our life without it. It is used to make classic lemonade, as a morning weight loss drink and against cellulite, it is added to salad dressings, it can be grated and added to cakes and to tea to fight colds, its aroma is used in vitamin C tablets, it is an ingredient in home cleaning products – lemon permeates all spheres of our lives. We all already know that it is full of vitamin C; it goes without saying that – being a powerful antioxidant – it strengthens our immune system and cleanses the body. But lemon is much more than just its juice. One of its treasures is oil.
LIMONENE AND β-PINENE
When oil is extracted from the lemon peel by cold pressing, we obtain a treasure trove of useful ingredients. The two most dominant components of lemon oil are limonene and β-pinene which show strong antioxidant action and have antibacterial properties, especially when it comes to gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. Lemonene is a terpene that gives lemons their distinctive scent. In addition to its intoxicating aroma, it has many positive effects on our health. This substance prevents inflammation and is useful in a number of inflammatory disorders, from rheumatoid arthritis to some forms of cancer. With its strong antioxidant action, limonene absorbs and destroys free radicals and does not allow them to damage our cells. It effectively prevents the development of malignant cells by reducing the level of oxidative stress in our body. Limonene is an excellent protector of our cardiovascular health, it stimulates circulation, strengthens capillary walls, helps lower blood pressure, bad cholesterol and triglycerides, but also restores balance to blood sugar levels.
β-pinene is a monoterpene and is present in a large number of essential oils. Its pharmacological properties are numerous: it destroys microbes that are resistant even to antibiotics, has anticoagulant, anti-tumuor, antimalarial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects. It is very effective against Leishmania, a parasite transmitted by mosquitoes that causes leishmaniasis. This disease causes fatigue, high fever, swollen lymph nodes, changes in the skin and can be fatal if left untreated. β-pinene and limonene with their antimicrobial properties effectively destroy these parasites. In addition to destroying microbes, β-pinene has cytogenetic, gastroprotective, anxiolytic, anticonvulsant and neuroprotective effects.
LEMON OIL FOR GOOD CONCENTRATION
In addition to protecting our immunity and not allowing microbes to take over our body, lemon oil also helps us fight fatigue, exhaustion, depression and lack of concentration. Numerous studies have shown that aromatherapy involving a few drops of lemon oil reduces anxiety improves mood and stimulates the autonomic and endocrine systems. It is especially useful for students because it enhances concentration and facilitates the learning process. Lemon essential oil regulates dopamine secretion, reduces muscle cramps, protects the nervous system, improves cognitive abilities and eliminates the feeling of nausea, which is why it is especially useful for pregnant women.
LEMON OIL AND SKIN HEALTH
As a good diuretic and initiator of lymphatic drainage, lemon is an excellent fighter against cellulite, but its care for our beauty does not end there. Lemon essential oil destroys harmful bacteria that attack the skin and body, including Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Trichophyton rubrum, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Therefore, it helps clean minor wounds and injuries; in addition to preventing wound complications and the development of fungal infections such as athlete’s foot, it also prevents skin inflammation, so it is effective in treating inflammatory skin diseases such as psoriasis. Its effect goes deep: lemon oil penetrates the skin, even through the stratum corneum (epidermis, the outer layer of the skin), and thus thoroughly destroys pathogens, including the most resistant ones. With its antioxidant properties, it protects the skin from harmful UV radiation and prevents malignant changes in the skin. By destroying viruses, lemon essential oil also helps with skin changes caused by the herpes virus: cold sores and viral warts.
When the skin is healthy it is beautiful. Lemon oil additionally beautifies, brightens and evens out the complexion and removes pigmentation, including age spots. It is ideal for the care of oily and seborrheic skin because it balances the secretion of sebum, so it is very useful for acne. That is why it is used as a facial cleanser and is also an ingredient in daily care lotions and creams.
In order to show its healing properties, lemon essential oil must be pure and of good quality. Unfortunately, today it is often diluted with cheaper synthetic oils. That is why it is important to know what is in the preparations that we use. When it comes to Devi balms, we can be certain that they contain only the highest quality oils and butters. Two balms from the Devi collection contain lemon essential oil: in Devi balm for heel care, lemon oil has a highly nourishing effect as it softens the skin of the heels and feet, in addition to destroying fungi that can cause unpleasant and dangerous infections on the skin and nails. Devi viral warts balm combines lemon essential oil with powerful antiviral oils of tea tree, ravensara, castor, tamanu, cloves and willow bark extract, which with their synergistic effect painlessly and completely naturally remove viral warts from the skin.
And finally, bearing in mind that lemon trees which are green all year round can live up to 150 years, we should occasionally remember to add a few drops of lemon juice to tea or water and a little lemon oil to an oil diffuser; as for the skin, we can easily prolong its longevity and beauty with the help of Devi balms.
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