Chamomile has been used as an herbal remedy for centuries for a wide range of issues from fever to bladder problems to skin irritations.
In modern times, chamomile is primarily used orally to treat insomnia, anxiety, and digestive problems, but it is now being studied as a possible diabetes treatment. It's also applied over the skin topically to relieve skin irritations and aid in wound healing. Because chamomile hasn't been thoroughly studied in people, however, claims of the purported health benefits are lacking strong evidence.
Chamomile essential oil and floral extracts contain more than 120 chemical elements, many of which are pharmacologically active. They include:
- Chamazulene (anti-inflammatory)
- Bisabolol (anti-irritant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial)
- Apigenin (a phytonutrient with anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial, and antiviral properties)
- Luteolin (a phytonutrient with anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial, and antiviral properties)
These compounds are responsible for the health benefits of chamomile tea and other chamomile products.
10 health benefits of drinking chamomile tea
- Improves sleep: Chamomile is one of the most commonly used alternative remedies for treating insomnia and sleep disorders. However, despite its reputation as a sleep-inducing herb, there is little scientific evidence to back up this claim.
- Improves digestive health: According to a few studies, chamomile suppresses the activity of Helicobacter pylori (bacteria that can cause stomach ulcers). Chamomile is thought to aid smooth muscle spasms linked with inflammatory gastrointestinal illnesses, including inflammatory bowel disease, although further research is needed to prove this.
- Helps manage diabetes: Chamomile tea can help reduce blood sugar levels in people with diabetes and lower total cholesterol, although it should not replace following medical advice from your doctor and taking medications as prescribed. Chamomile may be a useful addition to existing treatments.
- Improves dental health: Studies have reported that chamomile mouthwash considerably reduces gingivitis and plaque, owing to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Relieves menstrual pain: Chamomile tea has been associated with reduction in the severity of menstrual cramps in several studies. It may also help reduce anxiety and distress associated with menstrual periods.
- Slows the progression of osteoporosis: Chamomile tea can aid in increasing bone density and prevent or slow osteoporosis, which causes a progressive loss of bone density.
- Helps reduce inflammation: Inflammation is a defense mechanism used by the immune system to combat infection. Chronic inflammation has been linked to various health issues including hemorrhoids, gastrointestinal pain, arthritis, autoimmune illnesses, and even depression. Chemicals in chamomile tea may help reduce inflammation in the body.
- Helps prevent and treat cancer: Chamomile tea may help target cancer cells or prevent them from forming in the first place. However, research regarding this has been inconclusive.
- Relieves anxiety: Chamomile tea is widely believed to help you relax and reduce anxiety, although this has only been evaluated in a few clinical trials. Many believe that chamomile tea has benzodiazepine-like properties. Benzodiazepines are anti-anxiety and sleep-inducing prescription medications. According to certain studies, chamomile binds to benzodiazepine receptors in the body to activate its actions.
- Relieves cold symptoms: Some studies and anecdotal evidence reports that inhaling steam infused with chamomile extract or drinking warm chamomile tea can help alleviate some of the symptoms of common cold such as nasal congestion and headache.
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