Top 5 Health Benefits of Chamomile!

Chamomile is a daisy-like plant in the Asteraceae family native to western Europe, India and western Asia. There are many species of this plant, two of which include Matricaria chamomilla and Anthemis nobilis. This herb consumed as a tea has a flavour similar to that of apples and in addition to tasting delicious, has a number of valuable therapeutic properties. Historically it’s renowned for its antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, antioxidant, ulcer inhibiting and astringent healing properties. Let’s take a look at the Top 5 Health Benefits of Chamomile!

1. Cures insomnia, helps anxiety and depression
Approximately 50% of people in the UK are victims of sleeping issues, giving rise to many problems such as poor concentration, low mood, lack of energy and high stress levels, among others. Flavonoids such as chrysin and apigenin are found in the plant which are somewhat responsible for its ability to act as a sleep aid. Its ability to relieve nervous tension also makes it valuable for alleviating anxiety and depression.

2. Ameliorates stomach troubles
Due to its sedative properties, its chamazulene (healing) and mucilage (viscous) content, and given that its volatile oil is carminative (flatulence relieving), chamomile has the ability to treat issues such as stomach cramps, ulcers, bowel syndromes, gastritis and poor digestion. It can also ease flatulence and bloating as well as menstrual cramps in women. Frequent consumption of chamomile tea helps to raise glycine levels within the body which may help to soothe menstrual spasms by allowing the body to release stored tension.

3. Boosts immunity
Likely due to its powerful terpenoid and flavonoid compounds, small amounts of vitamin A, calcium, potassium, magnesium, fluoride, folate plus traces of several other nutrients, chamomile acts as a valuable anti-bacterial and boosts immunity. The Egyptians used chamomile as a cure for ague (fever). Bioactive phytochemicals within the plant allow for healing effects on the body, such as immune system stimulation and improving cardiovascular function alongside its anti-cancer properties, inducing death in cancer cells whilst protecting healthy cells.

4. Beneficial for skin and hair
Applied topically, chamomile has the ability to reduce swelling, acne, skin irritation and inflammation. This plant can be used as a skin moisturiser and natural bleach, tightening pores and removing wrinkles. It can help to brighten hair and prevent dandruff by soothing a dry scalp. It also has mild antiseptic properties, reducing scarring and treating wounds when used as a salve.

5. Regulates blood sugar
Chamomile also has the ability to stabilise blood glucose levels, making it valuable for sufferers of hyperglycaemia, insulin resistance and diabetes. It can also help to manage the effects of diabetes, such as nervous and circulatory disorders, blindness and kidney disease.

If you feel as though you could benefit from a more restful snooze each night, less anxiety, improving your immune function, better skin health or keeping your blood sugar levels in check, chamomile is definitely a plant that you should reach out for. It can be found in most health food stores or online, taken as an infusion, iced tea, tincture, added to smoothies, applied topically as an essential oil or as a salve, ointment or even by adding the flower’s buds to a relaxing bath. Enjoy using chamomile, tell us how below or @KeepfitKingdom !

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