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What is Chamomile

Matricaria Chamomilla (German Chamomile)

This popular herb has been widely used in Western culture, Its medicinal usage can be dated back to well over four thousand years, with notables as Hippocrates, Galen, and Asclepius writing about chamomile benefits. Chamomile is a common ingrediate in herbal teas and is part of the propriatary blend in Sooner Relief. The daisy looking flower have calming, carminative, and spasmolytic properties. It is used in Sooner Relief because of its soothing and anti-inflammatory effects when applied topically.

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It is from the plant’s fresh and dried flower heads that infusions, liquid extracts, and essential oils are made. There are two species of chamomile that are generally used in todays medicinial herbalism, Marticaria chamomilla (German chamaomile) and Chamaemelum mobile (Roman chamomile). The herb is an annual and both species belong to the Asteraceae/Compasitae family, have similar physical appearances, chemical properties, and general applications. The German chamomile is the most commonly used.

Chamomile’s beneficial medicinal properties contain volatile oils as well as flavonoids and other therapeutic substances. The volatile oils include bisabolol, bisabolol oxides A & B and matricin, A compound call apigenin make up the flavonoids.

Health Benefits

For thousands of years, Chamomile has been used in teas as a mild, relaxing sleep aid, treating fevers, colds, stomach ailment, colic, and most notably as an anti-inflammatory. The herb can be digested or used externally on the skin as an oitment. Over the last 20 years, Chamomile has confirmed the many historical uses for the plant and established pharmacological mechanism for the plant’s therapeutic properties. This includes antiseptic, antispasmodic, antipyretic, antibacterial, anti fungal, and anti-allergenic activity. Continued research has proven that chamomile’s specific anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, muscle relaxant, antispasmodic, anti-allergenic and sedative properties. Because of it long history and proven reputation, the herb is included as a drub in the pharmacopoeia of 26 countries.

As a tea, be used for lumbago, rheumatic problems and rashes.
As a salve, be used for hemorrhoids and wounds.
As a vapor, be used to alleviate cold symptoms or asthma.
Relieve restlessness, teething problems, and colic in children.
Relieve allergies, much as an antihistamine would.
Aid in digestion when taken as a tea after meals.
Relieve morning sickness during pregnancy.
Speed healing of skin ulcers, wounds, or burns.
Treat gastritis and ulcerative colitis.
Reduce inflammation and facilitate bowel movement without acting directly as a purgative.
Be used as a wash or compress for skin problems and inflammations, including inflammations of mucous tissue.
Promote general relaxation and relieve stress. Animal studies show that chamomile contains substances that act on the same parts of the brain and nervous system as anti-anxiety drugs. Never stop taking prescription medications, however, without consulting your doctor.
Control insomnia. Chamomiles mildly sedating and muscle-relaxing effects may help those who suffer from insomnia to fall asleep more easily.
Treat diverticular disease, irritable bowel problems and various gastrointestinal complaints. Chamomiles reported anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic actions relax the smooth muscles lining the stomach and intestine. The herb may therefore help to relieve nausea, heartburn, and stress-related flatulence. It may also be useful in the treatment of diverticular disorders and inflammatory bowel conditions such as Crohn’s disease.
Soothe skin rashes (including eczema), minor burns and sunburn. Used as a lotion or added in oil form to a cool bath, chamomile may ease the itching of eczema and other rashes and reduces skin inflammation. It may also speed healing and prevent bacterial infection.
Treat eye inflammation and infection. Cooled chamomile tea can be used in a compress to help soothe tired, irritated eyes and it may even help treat conjunctivitis.
Heal mouth sores and prevent gum disease. A chamomile mouthwash may help soothe mouth inflammations and keep gums healthy.
Reduce menstrual cramps. Chamomiles believed ability to relax the smooth muscles of the uterus helps ease the discomfort of menstrual cramping.

Sooner Relief Herbal Pain Relief chose chamomile as part of its formulation for it relaxing sedative properties. This has been found beneficial to many customers that suffer Restless Leg Syndrome and insomnia. They have written in to tell us that they rub Sooner Relief on the bottom of their feet or on the inside of their legs before bed time.

References

Alternative Medicine Review Volume 13, Number 1 2008 pages 58-62
Blumenthal M, Goldberg A, Brinckman J, eds. Herbal Medicine: Expanded Commission E Monographs. Newton, MA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2000:57–61.

Lee SH, Heo Y, Kim YC. Effect of German chamomile oil application on alleviating atopic dermatitis-like immune alterations in mice. Journal Veterinary Science. 2010;11(1):35–41.
McKay DL, Blumberg JB. A review of the bioactivity and potential health benefits of chamomile tea (Matricaria recutita L.). Phytotherapy Research. 2006;20(7):519–530.

Natural Standard Database Web site. Accessed at www.naturalstandard.com on November 7, 2013.

Srivastava J, Shankar E, Gupta S (2011) Chamomile: A herbal medicine of the past with bright future. Mol Med 3: 895–901.

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