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Health Research

3 Health Benefits of Lavender [Infographic]

Lavender
Lavender is renowned for its beautiful and intensely aromatic purple flowers -- and it shows great promise in medicine. Research studies have found that lavender may strengthen the immune system due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties and treat depression and anxiety. Drinking lavender tea may help ease insomnia and alleviate feelings of agitation.
Lavender Infographic
What is lavender?
Lavender is bluish-purple flower that has been used for thousands of years, with the earliest recorded use by the ancient Egyptians for the mummification process. Both the Greeks and the Romans used lavender for bathing and cooking, for perfumes, and to heal wounds, among other applications. Lavender was known for its sweet and intense fragrance but became popular as a medicine during the Middle Ages when its soothing and calming effects were discovered. Today, lavender flowers are used for restlessness, insomnia, nervousness, depression, flatulence, upset stomach, headaches, rheumatism, and acne.
Botanical name: Lavendula angustifolia
Other names: Common lavender, French lavender, true lavender
Description: A perennial evergreen shrub with woody stems and bluish-purple flowers
Habitat: Native to France and the western Mediterranean and the lavender shrub is now cultivated throughout the United States and Europe
Properties*: Analgesic, anti-anxiety, anti-bacterial, antidepressive, antioxidant, carminative
The health benefits of lavender according to research
1. Immunity and Overall Health
There is some interest in lavender as an anticarcinogenic (anti-cancer) agent. Lavender contains a constituent known as perillyl alcohol which appears to have some anti-cancer activity in various in vitro and animal studies. In the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, the leaf extracts and essential oil of lavender were found to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain-relieving) properties. Results from animal studies provided preliminary support for the traditional use of lavender for the treatment of painful and inflammatory conditions.
2. Sleep Support
The calming aroma of lavender has been used to ease insomnia and to decrease alertness in humans because of its sedative effects. In one particular study of elderly people with sleeping troubles, the volatile oils of lavender was found to be as effective as some commonly prescribed sleep medications. Similar results were seen in another trial that included young and middle aged people with insomnia.
Teas made from lavender flowers are currently approved for internal use by the German Commission E (Germany’s equivalent to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration) for people with insomnia.
3. Stress & Mood Support
Lavender has been used in various systems of traditional medicine to treat depression and anxiety. The scent of lavender has been shown in modern science to have positive effects on mood and can help to alleviate mild feelings of agitation or distress.
Some clinical studies have found that lavender improves anxiety, remission rates, and sleep scores for those with mild to severe anxiety compared to placebo. One particular trial found its volatile oils were helpful in providing symptom relief to people with generalized anxiety disorder. The degree of improvement was similar to those who were given a low dose of an anti-anxiety drug. Researchers believe lavender flowers could have similar effects as lavender oil and flowers have similar properties.

Disclaimer

* These are some of the pharmacological actions that have been observed or are under study in various evidence-based research studies. Herb may have other properties not listed here.
The statements on this page are for educational purposes only and have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Please consult your healthcare practitioner prior to the use of any herbal products, especially if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have allergies or medical conditions.
The information has been sourced and extracted from scientific papers, academic journals, research abstracts, and other sources. While Purify Tea makes every effort to present accurate and reliable information on this website, Purify Tea does not endorse, approve, or certify such information, nor does it guarantee the accuracy, completeness, efficiency, timeliness, or correct sequencing of such information. Use of such information is voluntary, and reliance on it should only be undertaken after an independent review of its accuracy, completeness, efficiency, and timeliness. While many traditional or folkloric remedies have a long history of use, modern research has only begun to investigate and substantiate their effectiveness. Research is still ongoing in many areas therefore conclusions are subject to change.

Sources

Chevallier, Andrew. Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine. New York, NY: DK Publishing, 2016. Print.
Duke J. A. Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases. Natural Agricultural Library. United States Department of Agriculture. Web. June 26, 2016.
Kane, Charles W. Herbal Medicine: Trends and Traditions. New York, NY: Lincoln Town Press, 2009. Print.
“Lavender.” National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH). U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, May 10, 2016. Web. June 7, 2016.
“Lavender.” The Herb Society of America, 2013. Web. June 9, 2016.
“Lavender.” The University of Michigan Health System. University of Michigan, May 24, 2015. Web. June 7, 2016.
“Lavender.” University of Maryland Medical System. University of Maryland School of Medicine, January 2, 2015. Web. July 23, 2016.
Masoud Nikfarjam, Neda Parvin, Naziheh Assarzadegan, Shabnam Asghari. “The Effects of Lavandula Angustifolia Mill Infusion on Depression in Patients Using Citalopram: A comparison Study.” Iran Red Crescent Med J. August 2013;15(8):734-9. Epub August 5, 2013.
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Therapeutic Research Center. Web. June 22, 2016.
United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service, Beltsville Area Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). November 28, 2015, Web. June 26, 2016.
World Health Organization. WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants – Volume 3. Geneva, 2007. Print.
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