The therapeutic properties of Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis L.): Reviewing novel findings and medical indications


  • Katarzyna Świąder Faculty of Human Nutrition and Consumer Sciences, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Poland
  • Christofora Hanny Wijaya Department of Food Science and Technology, Bogor Agricultural University, Bogor, Indonesia
  • Katarzyna Startek



Melissa officinalis, a perennial plant in the family Lamiacae, known as lemon balm, is a popular herb with multiple therapeutic properties. Significant content of active compounds (including rosmarinic acid) is reported to be responsible for the broad health effects of lemon balm. Melissa officinalis has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antidepressant activities. It can be used in the treatment of sleep disorders, neurodegenerative diseases and obesity as well as in ophthalmology, gynaecology, oncology, gastroenterology and cardiology. This review includes literature on the chemical composition of Melissa officinalis and the possibilities of its use in medicine as well as functional food. Furthermore, the side effects and the contraindications to the usage of this herb were summarized.