Chemical Compositions of Fingered Citron Peel (Citrus Medica L. var. Sarcodactylis) and Its Effect on the Autonomic Nervous System

Winai Sayorwan, Vadee Rumruay


Background: In Thailand, Fingered Citron (Citrus medica L. var. sarcodactylis) is used in folk medicine as a tonic for antispasmodic conditions and as an inhaler. According to published research, there are no comprehensive scientific researches on the chemical composition and physiological effects of fingered citron; thus, the present study was designed. We investigated the chemical composition of fingered citron peel oil by GC-MS and its effect on the autonomic nervous systems (blood pressure, heart rate, skin temperature, and respiratory rate) and mood responses after inhaling.

Methods: The hydrodistillation technique was used to extract the essential oil from the fruit of fingered citron. The major chemical composition of the essential oil was limonene (65.11%) and gamma terpinene (34.89%). There were 30 volunteer participants for this experiment. The parameters of assessment were measured before and after using a paired t-test statistical procedure.

Results: The results revealed that fingered citron oil caused a significant increase in blood pressure, and the respiratory rate also showed a significant increase upon exposure to the inhaled oil. Furthermore, the oil increased positive emotions including the feelings of well-being, activeness, and freshness. The oil also significantly reduced negative emotions such as drowsiness.

Conclusion: This finding provides evidence of the stimulating effects of inhaling fingered citron peel oil.


Citrus medica L. var. sarcodactylis; Autonomic nervous system; Stimulation Limonene

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