I was so thrilled three days ago when a friend sent me chamomile tea leaves all the way from a neighbouring country. Most of the time I suffer from insomnia (lack of sleep) but when I have chamomile tea leaves with me in stock, the problem ceases to be for a while, because just a cup of chamomile tea will sooth me to sleep at the time when sleep becomes a problem. Chamomile is a herb that comes from a flowering plant from the daisy family.
Both the fresh and dried flowers of chamomile have been used to create teas for centuries to cure a number of health problems. The active ingredient in chamomile essential oil is known as bisabolol, which has a number of anti-irritant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-microbial properties.
Chamomile can be used topically or orally to treat a number of everyday ailments, such as:
Insomnia and other sleep disorders - Chamomile can prove especially helpful in relieving the symptoms of mild insomnia. Chrysin, a flavonoid component of Chamomile, is the chemical attributed to Chamomile’s ability to relieve anxiety and promote sleep. Chrysin can also be found in Passion flower, another plant often effective in the treatment of insomnia and anxiety.
Anxiety and Panic Attacks - Most people don’t know how they get stressed out until they start experiencing the anxiety. It can be a relief to turn to chamomile tea for anxiety since it helps one to relax. Some known facts about chamomile tea is, that it does not have any caffeine in it. It is known among many users to be a soothing and calming herbal tea and that is why it works so well for anxiety sufferers.
Muscle twitches - Chamomile herb also contains glycine, an amino acid that has been shown to relieve muscle spasms. Glycine also is known to act as a nerve relaxant, which may also explain why the tea seems to act as a mild sedative.
Wounds, burns, and scrapes - Chamomile oil is very useful in treating bad burns. Simple rub a small amount of oil gently across the burned area once a day. For scrapes and burns you can also brew a strong concoction by adding 3 tea bags to one cup of boiling water. When the water cools, dip a cloth into it and use it as a compress on the wounded area.
Chamomile also helps in skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, and chicken pox. It has also been know to sooth stomach problems such as menstrual cramps, stomach flu, and ulcers. Chamomile tea is also being studied for its beneficial effects in the management of diabetes. In one study, daily consumption of chamomile tea was found to prevent the progression of diabetic complications and hyperglycemia, and protection against different types of cancer cells.
Some people have serious allergic reactions (including anaphylaxis) to chamomile. If you are allergic to other plants in the same family such as daisy, ragweed, aster, chrysanthemum, or marigold you should use caution when using chamomile.
Chamomile should be avoided during pregnancy because it may act as a uterine stimulant and therefore increase the chance of abortion.
People with bleeding disorders or on blood thinners should avoid chamomile, as it contains coumarin and may increase the chance of bleeding.
Apart from the few precautions, people who can take chamomile tea without it causing any danger to their health, I urge them to try it and experience the soothing feel.