Lippia citrodora is a species of flowering plant in the verbena family Verbenaceae, native to western South America. Common names include lemon verbena and lemon beebrush. Lemon verbena is a perennial shrub or subshrub growing to 2–3 m high. The 8-cm-long, glossy, pointed leaves are slightly rough to the touch and emit a powerful scent reminiscent of lemon when bruised. Lemon verbena leaves are used to add a lemon flavor to fish and poultry dishes, vegetable marinades, salad dressings, jams, puddings, Greek yogurt and beverages. It also is used to make herbal teas, or added to standard tea in place of actual lemon. In addition, it has anti-Candida albicans activity.
Moderate antioxidant supplementation with lemon verbena extract protects neutrophils against oxidative damage, decreasing the signs of muscular damage in chronic running exercise without blocking the cellular adaptation to exercise. Lemon verbena extract containing 25% verbascoside showed strong antioxidant capacity, especially in a lipophilic environment, which was higher than expected as concluded from the antioxidant capacity of pure verbascoside, probably due to synergistic effects. The capacity of verbascoside to act as an effective radical scavenger in lipophilic environments was also shown. Verbascoside-enriched extracts might have interesting applications in cosmetic, nutraceuticals or functional food.