Fever grass goes by many names. The name for the herb is usually contingent on its location. The grass has been commonly used in Jamaica to help a person relieve a fever, which is where the herb gets its name. In addition to relieving a fever, the plant has many other medicinal properties.
In Jamaica, the grass grows in the rural parts of the country and is considered seasonal. Long, slender green leaves characterize the grass. The leaves usually grow directly from the ground or in the form of a bush. The grass has been known to reside in any region considered tropical or subtropical. For example, fever grass can be found in many parts of India.
Some common names for the grass include barbed wire grass, citronella, silky grass, and Gavati Chaha. In India, fever grass is called lemongrass. The grass grows very naturally and is used in the native cuisine in India. As a herb, it is used in dried or powdered form, but it can also be used fresh in cooking.
Research examining the benefits of this herb has continued over the years. In 2006, a research team discovered that the grass could be used to fight cancer. In addition to fighting cancer cells, the grass has also been credited for its nutritional qualities that increase longevity.
Some believe that fever grass can also be useful in calming the effects of menopause. For example, the grass can be helpful in reducing hot flashes. It's the calmative nature of the grass that helps reduce menopause symptoms.
Fever grass is often consumed in the form of tea. To use the grass as tea, it is boiled in water for around ten minutes. When it is consumed in the form of a tea, the grass is usually sweetened with brown sugar or honey. As tea, the grass is a diuretic that can also be used to fight obesity. It has been known to help overweight individuals stabilize their weight.
A variety of products are made by using oil from this grass. The grass has been used in soaps, candles, insect repellent sprays, and even household disinfectants. Fever grass oil has antiseptic properties, which makes it a good ingredient for disinfectant soaps.