On a quest to improve your health? Try this herbal tea!
A coveted herb from the flowers of the Asteraceae plant (a member of the chrysanthemum and daisy family), chamomile extract has been used for centuries as a natural remedy to soothe feelings of stress, fight the common cold, and soothe upset stomachs. But these aren’t the only advantages to regularly sipping on a cup of chamomile tea.
It turns out that the benefits of chamomile flowers extend well beyond simply tasting great. One, among many of its most significant health impacts, may be slowing osteoporosis. Yep, you read that right. Scroll the below list to find out how, and to learn about all the ways that chamomile tea might make you stronger, healthier, and happier.
1. Chamomile tea soothes irritated skin.
Look at the ingredients list on various creams, serums, and other skincare products designed to soothe the skin, and you just may see chamomile listed. In fact, a 2018 study shows that the coveted herb has a positive effect on irritated skin. This is because it has anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidant content. The natural phytochemicals and polyphenols (plant compounds) in chamomile tea support the natural healing process of scars and minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
2. It offers sleep support.
Are you struggling to summon the Sandman? Chamomile tea is a classic nightcap for a reason. Not only is it light and subtly sweet, but the caffeine-free herb provides ideal sleep support because it has a gentle, sedative effect. The effect of chamomile tea is a lot like receiving a slow massage — subtle, relaxing, and very effective at bringing on the ZZZs. If you struggle to get good sleep, the snoozy herb is definitely worth trying.
3. It relieves tension and stress.
Part of the reason why chamomile tea helps you sleep better is that it eases feelings of stress. A 2016 study found that if you consume the herb long enough, it has beneficial effects on feelings of anxiety and tension in the body. More research is needed to understand how chamomile can quiet an anxious mind, but it’s likely due to “apigenin.” This beneficial polyphenol is thought to interact with receptors in the brain, leading to a mild sedative-like effect.
Note: Keep in mind that chamomile tea may not work the same for everyone, so it’s always best to consult your healthcare provider before starting any medical treatment plan.
4. Chamomile tea might improve your heart health.
Drinking chamomile tea is also believed to help support a healthy heart. This is partly thanks to its calming properties, as increased feelings of stress and tension in the body can also impact heart health. It’s also possible that chamomile’s antioxidants and flavonoids play a role in supporting healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels. Research in this area is ongoing.
5. It regulates digestion.
The chamomile herb is anti-spasmodic, meaning it helps soothe natural spasms within the body — including the gut. Thus, it can soothe your upset digestive tract. It also contains bitter compounds called sesquiterpene lactones, which support the pancreas in producing the necessary digestive enzymes to break down food effectively.
And because chamomile has a calming effect on the body, a cup of tea can be particularly useful for digestive conditions, like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and stomach ulcers. (Click through to learn how fennel tea eases digestive upset, too.)
6. Chamomile maintains healthy blood sugar levels.
Believe it or not, consuming chamomile may support healthy blood sugar levels. In one 2014 study, researchers found that those who drank the beneficial tea with their meals experienced better blood sugar levels.
Additionally, one animal study suggests that chamomile may impact fasting blood sugar levels. More research is needed, but there’s no denying that the findings are promising!
7. Chamomile increases bone density.
Osteoporosis is the progressive loss of bone density. This loss increases the risk of fractures and broken bones. While anyone can develop the condition, it’s most common among post-menopausal women. According to experts, women undergo rapid bone loss in the first 10 years after entering menopause because menopause slows the production of estrogen — a hormone that protects against excessive bone loss.
While most people look to calcium to combat brittle bones, some studies indicate chamomile is another weapon in the fight against bone loss. A 2010 scientific study found that chamomile could help support the natural growth of osteoblastic cells — the cells in your body that work to support bone growth and mineralization.
8. It eases stomach upset and nausea.
When it comes to stomach upset, ginger is hailed as the ultimate remedy for relief. But if you’re not fond of ginger’s spicy and distinctly warm flavor, chamomile is your next best bet. It was once used by the Romans, Egyptians, and Greeks to soothe the digestive system and issues like gas, motion sickness, ulcers, and indigestion. It also helps to regulate the nervous system, which is fantastic news for those of us who find that their tummy upset can come from emotional issues like fear and stress.
To make chamomile tea for an upset stomach, steep a tea bag or one tablespoon of dried chamomile leaves in one cup of piping hot water for five minutes. If your sour stomach doesn’t go away after trying to remedy it, consider contacting your doctor, who can get to the bottom of your discomfort and guide you toward relief.
9. It reduces PMS discomfort.
If you still get your period, you’re well aware of the cramping, mood swings, and belly bloat that tend to tag along. But you can actually soothe PMS symptoms by increasing your intake of chamomile tea about a week before your period starts. This is because chamomile helps to smooth out natural spasms in the body (i.e. cramps). Also, it contains flavonoids that can support the production of neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, and GABA, helping to lessen the impact of moodiness and other symptoms.
10. Chamomile boosts your immune system.
If a cold, cough, stuffy nose, and sore throat are troubling you, consider sipping on a warm cup of chamomile. Why? Because it contains immune-boosting compounds that may help you feel better sooner rather than later. It can also bolster your body’s natural resistance to seasonal allergens like ragweed pollen and dust mites, among others.
11. It may have hair-nourishing superpowers.
Want brighter, shinier, and potentially healthier hair? Try washing your hair with chamomile tea. The compounds found in the herb have the power to soothe a dry scalp… maybe. There isn’t much scientific research available to prove chamomile’s effectiveness on hair health. Still, if you’ve already got some in your pantry, it certainly couldn’t hurt to try!
The Chamomile Conclusion
Whether you’re hoping to support bone health, soothe menstrual cramps, or catch some ZZZs, chamomile tea may help. Its powerful compounds have a host of health benefits, and its floral and apple flavors are just plain delicious.
That said, consuming chamomile is not a substitute for proven medical treatments. If you’re exploring holistic remedies like chamomile for chronic conditions, be sure to consult with your doctor first.