What comes to your mind when we say lemon grass? Surely most of you will be thinking of the exotic aroma we get in oriental cuisine. It is an important ingredient in any Asian food and also several cocktails and virgin drinks. Other than its gastronomic importance, lemongrass is a popular herb that has been used in ancient medical practices as it packs a host of healing properties. The lemongrass oil is extensively used in aroma therapy and combats fatigue, anxiety and body odour. Speaking about its health benefits, lemongrass oil helps in managing cholesterol.
Health Practitioner and Nutritionist Shilpa Arora ND tells us, "Lemongrass oil contains a compound called citral. This is a potent antioxidant which helps in reducing cholesterol in the human body. This oil also has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial effects which can be used as natural medicine to lower cholesterol. Studies suggest that this essential oil also helps manage diabetes very effectively."
As Per Shilpa Arora's Suggestion, This Is How You Can Use Lemon Grass Oil In Your Daily Diet:
It can be used in herbal tea. Adding two drops of the essential oil in warm water or to flower teas like chamomile or jasmine tea, may help reduce high blood pressure and bad cholesterol in the body.
- A few drops of lemongrass oil can be added to olive oil to make refreshing salad dressings
Lemon Grass-Flower Tea Recipe:
- Boil a cup of water with chamomile or jasmine tea
- Add cinnamon powder to it and let it boil
- Switch off the flame and add two drops of essential oil to it and cover with a lid; let it infuse for three-four minutes
- Strain and take a sip.
As per Shilpa Arora, this herbal tea should be included in your diet on a daily basis. This will not only manage your cholesterol level, but also detox your body and aid digestion. This combination of cinnamon and lemongrass oil helps in keeping the bodies calm all throughout day.
How To Extract Lemon Grass Oil At Home?
Lemon Grass Oil is easily available in the market, but if extracting the oil at home is also possible. There are two methods of extraction, both are equally effective.
In the first process:
- One needs to first clean and dry two fresh lemon grass stalks completely.
- Take a mortar and pestle to mash them completely.
- Put the mashed stalk and the juices into a canning jar with infuse it with any neutral oil (may be coconut oil, olive oil or rice bran oil); cover the jar tightly.
- Put the jar somewhere which gets ample amount of sunshine. Keep it like that for two days.
- Strain the oil, preferably with a soft mulmul cloth into another jar.
- Put one or two stalks of lemon grass in it and close tightly; keep it under the sun for next two days.
- You may repeat the process until you get the desired smell out of the oil.
- Finally, filter the concentrated oil into a glass jars, preferably a dark one, cover it tightly, and store the oil in a dark place. The oil can be stored for almost one year, if kept properly.
In the second process:
- One needs to add the lemongrass stalks in some boiling water in a saucepan.
- Put some neutral oil of your choice to it and heat up the oil along with the lemongrass stalk.
- It needs to be slow-boiled for at least two hours; remember over boiling can ruin the essence.
- Strain the oil with mulmul cloth into a glass jar and let it cool.
- Cover the jar with some cloth or get a dark jar and store the oil in a dark place for later use.
Prepare the lemongrass oil and keep it handy. All you need to do is pour a drop or two in your tea and salads and enjoy.
About Somdatta SahaExplorer- this is what Somdatta likes to call herself. Be it in terms of food, people or places, all she craves for is to know the unknown. A simple aglio olio pasta or daal-chawal and a good movie can make her day.