Efficacy of Melissa officinalis L. (lemon balm) extract on glycemic control and cardiovascular risk factors in individuals with type 2 diabetes: A randomized, double-blind, clinical trial

Phytother Res. 2019 Mar;33(3):651-659. doi: 10.1002/ptr.6254. Epub 2018 Dec 10.


Melissa officinalis is a plenteous source of antioxidant flavonols and flavonoids that contain health-promoting and antidiabetic properties, so this study was undertaken to provide the first assessment of the antidiabetic properties of hydroalcoholic extract of M. officinalis in type 2 diabetic patients. We did a randomized, placebo-controlled trial which included 62 patients, receiving either M. officinalis capsules (700 mg/d; n = 31) or the placebo (n = 31) twice daily for 12 weeks. There were significant differences in serum FBS (P = 0.007), HbA1c (P = 0.002), β-cell activity (P = 0.05), TG (P = 0.04), HDL-c (P = 0.05), hs-CRP (P = 0.001), and systolic blood pressure (P = 0.04) between the two groups at the end of the study; but total cholesterol, LDL-c, insulin, and HOMA-IR showed no significant changes between the groups. In M. officinalis group, there was a significant change in HDL-c (P = 0.009) and QUICKI (P = 0.005) compared with baseline values. No adverse effects were observed. It seems that M. officinalis is safe and effective in improvement of lipid profile, glycemic control, and reduction of inflammation.

Keywords: Melissa officinalis; antidiabetic; flavonoid; hypoglycemic; lemon balm.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / analysis*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / drug therapy*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Lipids / blood
  • Male
  • Melissa*
  • Middle Aged
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Risk Factors


  • Blood Glucose
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Lipids
  • Plant Extracts