Lime tea, a type of tree very common in countries with colder climates, is a natural remedy to relieve anxiety and improve sleep, as it is rich in compounds with a calming and anxiolytic effect.
But that’s not all, the flowers, a part used for medicinal purposes, are rich in substances that work from treating some uncomfortable flu symptoms to reducing high blood pressure. Amazing isn’t it?
If you want to discover the 5 main benefits of linden trees and how to consume them and what care is needed, keep reading, because we have separated all this for you, according to scientific studies. Check out!
5 Benefits of linden for your health
1. Relieves anxiety
Do you often feel anxious? Well know that a hot cup of lime tea can help you in these moments.
This feeling usually appears before some important event. It’s the body’s way of preparing for a possible fight and it’s quite uncomfortable, and it can even present some very strong physical symptoms, such as tachycardia and shortness of breath.
When it becomes a problem, anxiety is treated with compounds called anxiolytics, which can be synthetic or natural, as is the case with lime.
According to research published in the Brazilian Journal of Medicinal Plants, the anxiolytic effect of the plant is due to the presence of two subgroups of compounds: quercetins and kaempferol derivatives. Both belong to the group of flavonoids, which are the blue and violet pigments found in plants.
It may seem a little complicated at first, but substances in this large group act directly on the central nervous system. There, they cause this part of the brain to release substances that calm down. It’s easy to understand now, isn’t it? ( 1 )
In other research, published in the Revista de Salud Mental, it was discovered that this action on the nervous system is able to stimulate an area of the brain that is responsible for releasing serotonin.
This substance is a neurotransmitter, which is a type of compound that serves to carry messages from the brain to the rest of the body, and the lack of it is directly linked to the emergence of anxiety and depression.
That said, according to the evidence, what the linden tree does is adjust the functioning of this region, making it work correctly. Which ends up providing quick relief from anxiety in milder cases. ( 2 )
2. Reduces stress and improves sleep quality
This same linden flavonoid-stimulating effect of serotonin release makes the herb a perfect natural tranquilizer to use on that stressful day or to give bedtime a boost.
What happens is that serotonin acts producing the so-called alert state and this has everything to do with the quality of sleep, as the body needs to rest to be able to function properly and act in emergency situations.
In this way, it helps to improve precisely this rest phase where the body recharges its energies, so that it can stay alert later on.
Furthermore, this neurotransmitter serves to make you happier and more relaxed. This is because serotonin improves communication between the various parts of the brain and a well functioning mind is a happy mind!
In research that was published in the Brazilian Journal of Medicinal Plants, the herb’s compounds were also shown to increase the sensitivity of a brain receptor that helps regulate not only the quality, but also the duration of sleep. ( 1 )
3. Relieves cold and flu symptoms
Another benefit of this incredible medicinal herb is in relieving some cold and flu symptoms. That’s right, a cup of tea helps to reduce runny nose, relieve cough and also fever .
Okay, but why does this happen? This happens because of the composition of the linden flowers, which are rich in flavonoids, as already mentioned, but also in tannins, some organic acids, mucilages and sterols.
All these names may seem quite complicated, but these substances have in common action on the respiratory tract, as explained in the book PDR for Herbal Medicines.
This is because they act together to stimulate the expulsion of mucus (phlegm), by making it more fluid, and improving the movement of the small lashes that carry it out, alleviating the irritation that causes coughing and increasing the production of sweat, which serves to reduce body temperature. ( 3 )
A research published in the scientific journal Fitoterapia discovered that the lime also acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory, a property that makes the herb manage to alleviate the irritation of the mucous membranes, the main cause of symptoms such as cough. ( 4 )
4. Helps to detoxify the body
The herb also works as a natural detox, helping to rid the body of accumulated toxins that can have negative health consequences.
This action, mentioned in the book Pharmacognosy, Phytochemistry, Medicinal Plants, is due to the sudorific and diuretic properties found in some of its compounds and which help in the elimination of toxic substances through sweat and urine. ( 5 )
But because of this you must replace the lost liquids well, ok? To avoid problems with excessive loss of essential minerals and dehydration.
5. Controls blood pressure
The linden tree can also be useful in the treatment of high blood pressure , thanks to the aforementioned diuretic effect.
What happens, according to an article published in the Brazilian Journal of Nephrology, is that this effect can increase urine production (diuresis), a process that favors the elimination of substances that increase blood pressure, such as sodium. Which is why diuretics are one of the most common treatments for hypertension today.
With the excretion of excess sodium, the body is able to regulate blood pressure, promoting greater long-term control and with few side effects, as long as the lime is used correctly. ( 6 )
How to use?
To use the linden you must make tea using the tree’s flowers, which can be fresh or dried.
To do this, just add 1 teaspoon of the flowers to 1 cup of boiling water. Let it sit for about 10 minutes and that’s it, just strain and the infusion is ready to drink.
The indication of the book PDR for Herbal Medicines is to consume up to two cups of this tea per day. ( 3 )
Lime tea care and contraindications
According to the PDR for Herbal Medicines, lime is a very safe herb and so far no side effects have been found from its use for medicinal purposes.
But that doesn’t mean you don’t need to be careful. No medication, even if of natural origin, should be used in excess. Therefore, avoid taking more than the recommended dose throughout the day. ( 3 )
Finally, pregnant and lactating women should not use it without medical advice, as it is still unknown what effects the herb can have in these situations. Hypertensive patients, on the other hand, should consume with care, because the diuretic effect enhances the effects of medications for hypertension.