hamomile refers to members of the Asteraceae family and has been in use as an herbal remedy since the time of ancient Egypt. Scientific findings within the past twenty years have helped confirm the usefulness of chamomile as a remedy for a wide range of ailments. The medical benefits include antipeptic, antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-allergenic properties, among others. Most people recognize chamomile for the soothing and relaxing tea that appears in shops around the world, but chamomile is able to offer so much more.
Two main types of chamomile exist in the market with slightly different compositions. The German chamomile tends to yield larger blossoms and a sweeter flavor, while the Roman variety yields more essential oil per blossom. The active ingredients in chamomile come from the flowers, so knowing which variety you have may affect the potency of the remedy.
The tea is used most often as a digestive aid, but the German variety has other applications. Mild anti-anxiety properties have been reported, but are still being researched. Ingestion of chamomile tea and tinctures offers some sedative effects, making it effective in treating insomnia and restlessness in both adults and children. The tea can also relieve headaches, menstrual cramps, bowel irritability, peptic ulcers, and symptoms of colds and fevers.
In addition to tea and tinctures, chamomile is one of the mainstay ingredients in popular products like Elimidrol, which has been formulated to address a host of symptoms by combining popular and effective supplements into a single-dose product.
Topical applications of chamomile are also worth the effort. Natural based salves including chamomile can be used to treat scrapes, wounds, and even external hemorrhoids as an anti-inflammatory. These same salves can by applied to sunburns, rashes, and other skin inflammation. Chamomile can serve as a mainstay in various compresses and salves that offer a natural alternative to traditional topic medications.
When mixed with mineral oil, the essential oil can be massaged directly into the skin to soothe aching or sore muscles. Vaporization of the oil as aromatherapy can alleviate headaches and calm irritable nerves. A few drops per glass of water can provide a mouthwash that promotes gum health. The same solution can be effective in treating upset stomach conditions, though caution is heavily advised as tea will provide the same benefits. It is generally not recommended to ingest the essential oil unless under the supervision of a professional.
It should be noted that while chamomile offers many health benefits, it is not recommended for pregnant women or those with allergies to ragweed or other similar plants. Roman chamomile has been known to cause uterine contractions which may invoke miscarriages. If concerned about allergic reactions, it is recommended to try applying the oil to a small part of your body to see if there is any reaction before taking a larger dose.