9 Amazing Benefits of Geranium

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

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The most interesting health benefits of geranium include its ability to lower stress levels, reduce inflammation, strengthen the immune system, ease digestion, and improve kidney, skin, and hair health. It has antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties, which help heal wounds faster.

What is Geranium?

The name geranium is quite general and it refers to over 200 species of plants under the family of Geraniaceae. This evergreen perennial is native to the southern region of Africa but has been exported throughout the world as a popular garden plant and medicinal herb.

Geranium plants have flowers with five petals and the leaves are usually pinnate on long stems. The leaves are the main medicinal elements in traditional medicine and are primarily used to brew a pleasant-tasting tea that bears a slight hint of rose. The essential oil of the flowers is also highly sought after for its health benefits and for its floral, rose-like aroma which has a calming, meditative effect on the body and mind.

Close-up of pink geranium flowers on a wooden stairs

Geranium plants are easy to grow and care for. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Geraniums were first brought to Europe in the 17th century and with time, their fame has spread throughout the world. Unlike many other herbal remedies, there is not a major culinary application for geranium, and they are almost exclusively used for either decoration or their medicinal benefits.

Geranium Health Benefits

Let’s take a closer look at some of the important health benefits of geranium.

Lowers Stress

The impact of geranium on the nervous system is well-known and the plant has been used in this way for generations. If you brew the leaves of its plant, you can produce a tasty tea that has soothing properties, derived from its organic compounds that positively impact the endocrine system and help balance hormones that cause stress and anxiety. A quick cup of tea, when you’re stressed, can quickly relieve an unpleasant mood and a cluttered mind. Moreover, even the aroma of geranium can have an anxiolytic effect on women during childbirth, suggests a 2015 study.

Reduces Inflammation

Researchers in a 2013 study revealed the anti-inflammatory properties of geranium. If you suffer from sore joints, aching muscles, or even internal inflammation of the gut or cardiovascular system, geranium tea or topical use of rose geranium essential oil along with a carrier oil, can provide relief from the discomfort while reducing the strain on your body’s sensitive areas.

Another study also concluded that the oil can prove effective for temporary pain relief from postherpetic neuralgia pain.

Boosts Immunity

Geranium is known to have immunity-boosting qualities. According to a study published in the Pharmaceuticals journal, geranium has been a staple in South African medicinal culture for the treatment of respiratory issues. Its effectiveness suggests that antimicrobial and antiviral properties as well as the potential to develop its extracts into a medicine.

An infographic on health benefits of geranium

Geranium plants Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Treats Respiratory Disorders

Geranium relieves symptoms of bronchitis, sinusitis, and nose infections because it is a powerful antiviral. This is confirmed by a report which adds that it is also useful against the common cold.

Reduces Nosebleed Severity

Arguably, one of the most unique and comparatively much less known health benefits of geranium essential oil is its efficacy against reducing the severity of hemorrhages. The possibility of rose geranium oil as an effective therapy option in hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT) associated epistaxis (acute hemorrhage in the nasal area, or nosebleeds) is being explored by studies. A study published in The Laryngoscope journal found that the topical application of rose geranium-sesame oil compounds can reduce the severity of epistaxis amongst these patients.

Diabetes Management

Known for centuries as a diabetes management option in Tunisian folk medicine culture, a study published in the Lipids in Health and Disease also found geranium essential oil as an effective antihyperglycemic drug. The animal study, which compared it to the effects of glibenclamide, found that the oil helped reduce diabetic complications arising out of oxidative stress.

Aids in Digestion

If you’re suffering from cramping, bloating, or a generally upset stomach, drinking a cup of geranium tea can be one of the easiest and most painless remedies. The beneficial organic compounds can quickly soothe inflammation and eliminate bacteria that may be causing the discomfort, and get your gastrointestinal system back to normal!

Skin Care

If you are looking for a natural skin cleanser and tonic, opt for geranium essential oil. It can be used directly on the skin in small quantities or added to your bathwater. It helps tighten and tone the skin and keeps it blemish-free.

Hair Care

Geranium promotes hair growth because it regulates the secretion of sebum on the scalp. The essential oil can be added to either carrier oils or shampoo. This helps give the hair a smooth sheen and a lovely, mild rose aroma.

Word of Caution: It is important to remember that the only rose-scented type can be safely consumed. You should be certain about the type you are using for herbal remedies if you aren’t getting your herbs from a professional. Also, be sure to consult your medical professional before adding it to your herbal supplement regimen.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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