What is Lemon Balm?

As the saying goes..."When life gives you lemon balm, make PMS gummy vitamins.”

Ok fiiine, so maybe that’s not quite right. But if you know us at all, you know two things: first, that we’d never turn down an opportunity to make a period pun. And second, that we’re serious fangirls for natural ingredients that send PMS symptoms packing. Lemon balm happens to be one of those ingredients.

Despite the deceiving name, lemon balm is not derived from lemons. It’s more closely related to herbs like basil and mint, but gets the name from its mildly lemon-scented leaves. And though it may be new to you (no shame, it was new to us too), lemon balm has been used medicinally for over 2000 years. Ancient Greek botanist Theophrastus wrote about lemon balm around 300 B.C., Swiss physician Paracelsus deemed it the “elixir of life”, and Thomas Jefferson grew the herb in his personal garden.

These guys were onto something, and we can only hope they thought to share some with their lady friends. Because as useful as lemon balm is at treating cold sores, protecting against heart and liver problems, and even preventing diabetes, where the stuff really shines is as a natural remedy against PMS. In 2015, one study found lemon balm to be effective at reducing the intensity of PMS cramps among a group of 100 high school students. A separate study conducted in 2014 researched the anti-stress effects of lemon balm; those participants who were given lemon balm reported improvements in mood and cognitive performance. Not sure about you, but when that time of the month rolls around we want all the mood boosting benefits we can get.

In addition to helping with cramps and mood, lemon balm can also be used to help with pain and bloating, as well as other uh, *digestive issues*; this 2015 study found lemon balm leaf extract be an effective treatment against constipation. While not one of the most talked about symptoms, weird stomach stuff does happen with PMS. We just feel fortunate that we’ve found lemon balm to help.

Looks like there’s some truth to our revamped version of the phrase, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” after all. Life gave us cramps, bloating, mood swings and more, but as result we made FLO, lemon balm included. Benefitting from all lemon balm has to offer is as easy as taking two FLO gummies everyday. Give it at least two menstrual cycles to feel the full effects, and look forward to PMS and periods that suck way, way less.