THE WONDROUS HERB
Fuel your healthy lifestyle with lemongrass.
Whichever name it goes by, there’s no mistaking its particularly distinctive scent that conjures up images of a day of relaxation at the spa! But more than that, you’ll find it aplenty in Asian cooking, infusing dishes with a mellow citrusy zing and adding depth to flavours. The best part? You can easily get it in wet markets and grocery stores – often sold in bundles at an affordable price.
1 GROW YOUR OWN
When you’re getting fresh stems from the supermarket, select those that have a light brown base. Next, place the ends in a glass or jar of water – be patient and change the water weekly. It may take several weeks but once a good root system has formed, place your plant in a pot with soil mix and trim the tops of each stem. You’ll need to water it well and place it where there’s plenty of sunshine!
2 RELAX AND REJUVENATE
There’s something inherently soothing about the way the scent of lemongrass permeates the air, which explains why spas tend to use it as an essential oil in treatments. If you’ve been feeling tensed lately, why not make some of your own? Just wash several stalks and peel their outer layers. You’ll then cut them into segments, before crushing them with a pestle, releasing the oil. Store it in a small bottle; our favourite way to use it is by infusing a bowl of boiling water with two to three drops and inhaling the steam deeply.
3 TUMMY SOOTHER
The next time you’re feeling discomfort from indigestion, bloat or heartburn, boil some stalks of lemongrass and ginger in water to make a soothing cup of tea. For a more enjoyable drink, add honey! According to the International Food Research Journal, it’s chockfull of antioxidants and exhibits anti-inflammatory properties.
4 HEALTH BOOST
The European Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences reports that luteolin, a flavonoid found in lemongrass, may be able to not only slow down the growth of select types of cancer cells, but speed up their death as well. In addition to this, luteolin exhibits such powerful antiinflammatory properties, it’s claimed to treat several symptoms of multiple sclerosis and lung infections.
5 REPELS INSECTS
No, you aren’t imagining the scent when you use insect repellents! As published by the journal Parasite, a study proved that the smell of lemongrass is able to deter mosquitoes and stable flies. To make your own insect shield, fill a spray bottle with warm water and add as many drops of lemongrass oil as you like – the more drops, the stronger the scent. But if you’re struggling with swells from bug bites, soothe some of the oil over them and let its anti-inflammatory magic do its work.
6 STINK NO MORE
Given its anti-bacterial properties, it’s a great way to go natural with your deodorant! Combine drops of l lemongrass oil with virgin coconut oil as the latter has been shown to have antifungal and antimicrobial propertie properties – boosting this concoction’s efficacy. Then, just slather it onto your underarms and wait a few minutes for it to dry b before putting on your clothes. As this mixture does not contain chemicals, do note that it works to stop only the odour and not perspiration. If you want an antipersp antiperspirant, try adding the oil to baking soda instead!
7 SCRUBBED CLEAN
Suffering from a case of back acne or skin irritations? Why not mak make your own luxurious scrub that will be g gentle enough on the skin, but still give you that all-over glow. Salt may stin sting if you have nicks and cuts from sh shaving or epilating, so opt for sugar in instead. Besides a few drops of lemong lemongrass oil, add other oils of your choice t to keep skin supple – choose from co coconut, jojoba or bergamot.
8 TONE UP
If this works on your body, imagine the plethora of benefits your face will yield from it! Try working its amazing properties into some of your DIY masks, such as adding a few drops into raw honey for a mixture that will moisturise and brighten your skin. But for a soothing treat on a hot day, boil some lemongrass water and empty the contents into a spray bottle. Just chuck it into the fridge and use when needed as a cooling toner.