Litsea Cubeba: Antimicrobial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory powerhouse!

Carla Hellemond

Litsea Cubeba (commonly referred to as May Chang) is an evergreen tree that grows between 16 -40 feet tall. This tree is a species of the Lauraceae (Laurel) family. The leaves of this tree are a vibrant green, the flowers are a whitish-yellow and the fruit resembles a small pepper.

Litsea Cubeba is native to China, Indonesia, Taiwan and other parts of Southeast Asia. The essential oil that is harvested from the ripened and dried fruits of the tree was not made available to the western world until the early 1950’s when it began to compete with Lemongrass essential oil. Now it is widely used in the perfumery and cosmetic industries.

The essential oil of Litsea Cubeba is a thin, clear, pale yellow liquid. It has a crisp, lemony citrus scent that one could compare to lemon sherbet. Known as the “oil of tranquility”, Litsea Cubeba’s scent is uplifting and rejuvenating. It is a perfect oil to add to moisturizers and baths to combat seasonal blues, stress, anger and irritability. This oil promotes relaxation, mental clarity and restful sleep.

In addition to the effects it has on your mind and spirit, Litsea Cubeba has positive effects on your body. This essential oil is known to contain antimicrobial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. Therefore, it is useful in treating infectious skin conditions like Athlete’s Foot, it can minimize and heal acne breakouts and it can be used to control excessive perspiration and unpleasant body odor.

E3 Naturals is a manufacturer of natural health and body products. Litsea Cubeba essential oil is used in the Body Butter.

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