The cosmetic industry uses Lemon as fragrance in a wide variety of cosmetic products. Lemon Essential Oil is also used for various medicinal and aromatherapy purposes, and as a flavoring agent used by the pharmaceutical, food and beverage industry. In Europe, it was traditionally used as a multi-cure for all kinds of infectious illnesses, Fever, Malaria and Typhoid. It is still used today, however it gained its fame by curing scurvy on English ships at sea. Lemon juice is also used worldwide as a domestic seasoning, and as a dietary supplement high in vitamins A, B and C. Lemon is extremely beneficial for overall health and wellbeing. When consumed, the juice is a remedy for acidic disorders, such as arthritis and rheumatism, and is a great aid for dysentery and liver congestion. Lemon or Citrus limon is a small evergreen tree, which can grow up to six meters tall, with serrated oval leaf’s, stiff thorns and extremely aromatic flowers. Lemon, the fruit we all know, grows on a tree, and turns from green to yellow upon ripening. Its oil is a pale greenish-yellow to yellow liquid, with a strong citrus aroma. The Lemon Essential Oil is cold pressed from the outer part of the fruit’s fresh peel. The main components of this oil are limonene (around 70%), terpinene, pinenes, sabinene, myrcene, citral, linalol, geraniol, octanol, nonanol, citronellal and bergamotene. Lemon Essential Oil has anti-anaemic, antimicrobial, antirheumatic, antisclerotic, antiscorbutic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antitoxic, astringent, bactericidal, carminative, cicatrisant, depurative, diaphoretic, diuretic, febrifuge, haemostatic, hypotensive, insecticidal, rubefacient, stimulant (white corpuscles), tonic and vermifuge properties.
The exact origin of the Lemon tree remains a mystery today. It is said by some that the Lemon tree is native to Southeast Asia. While others say that the first Lemons grew in southern India, northern Burma and China where they have been growing for over 2500 years. Known for their antiseptic properties, the natives used Lemons as an antidote against various poisons. A study of the genetic roots of the Lemon tree showed that it is a hybrid between the sour orange and citron trees. By the 1st century AD, Lemons had entered Europe via southern Italy, during the times of the Ancient Roman Empire. Initially, they were not widely cultivated until 700 AD when they were spread around Persia, Iraq and Egypt. The first recorded Lemon entry in literature comes from the 10th century via an Arabic document on farming. The Arabs used Lemons in the early Islamic gardens, mostly as an ornamental plant. By the 13th century the Lemon tree was widely distributed throughout the Mediterranean region and the Arab world. Arab traders brought the Lemons to the Middle East. In the mid-15th century a substantial cultivation of Lemon trees had started in Genoa (Italy), and Christopher Columbus later introduced it to the Americas in 1493, as he brought Lemon seeds with him on his voyage. Later that same year, the first Lemons of the New World were planted in Hispaniola. Further Spanish conquests and colonization helped spread Lemons throughout the New World, where it was frequently used for medicinal purposes and as an ornamental plant. In 1747 James Lind, a Scottish physician and pioneer of the naval hygiene in the Royal British Navy, developed a theory. His theory stated that with the consumption of citrus fruits and their juices, cure scurvy (vitamin C deficiency). Scurvy was a condition at the time that killed more than two million sailors between the years 1500-1800. He discovered this by adding Lemon juice to the diet of affected sailors, and found that it worked, although vitamin C was not yet discovered at the time. In the 19th century, mass Lemon cultivation had begun in Florida and California.
Today Lemons grow wild in the Mediterranean, especially in Spain and Portugal. They are extensively cultivated in Sicily, Cyprus, Guinea, Israel, California, Florida and South America.
Skin & Body Care
Lemon essential oil is a known remedy for acne, boils, cuts, herpes, insect bites, warts, and cellulitis.