Chamomile: Contraindications, Toxicity, Benefits And Uses

Without a doubt, there are herbs, plants and flowers that are widely used by people because they have healing properties , in addition to being used for the preparation of teas and other drinks.

In this case we have one of those plants or herbs, it is chamomile and then we will talk about all the details you should know about this plant.

What is chamomile?

Chamomile is an herb, which is also known under the name of chamomile . This is of European origin and its use is quite wide because it has analgesic and relaxing properties, it has very beneficial effects on the nervous system and it is also an excellent anti-inflammatory.

The structure of the plant consists of a stem that can reach up to 25 centimeters long , it has elongated leaves and small white flowers with a yellow center. This plant is easily available in the meadows and can adapt to extreme climates, it can also be grown at home from a pot.

Origin of chamomile

Chamomile has its origin in Western Europe, although its initial cultivation is also known in North Asia. Likewise, in Greece it was also used abundantly in ancient times because it was already considered a medicinal plant.

In central Europe, it began to be cultivated just after its potential was discovered in the initial countries, and with this the herb was able to reach the American continent, especially in the United States, Colombia, Ecuador and in the valley area of ​​Chile.

The perfect environment for this plant is grassy meadows, dry meadows, sandy soils and in places where grazing is practiced.

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History of chamomile

To start the history of chamomile we have to go to ancient Egypt or to the Greco-Roman era , since it was in these societies that the medicinal use of chamomile began. The Egyptians used the plant to treat fever, while the Romans also used it as an aromatic plant in incense and drinks.

In the Middle Ages, it was the monks who continued the tradition of using chamomile as a medicinal plant, in this way it began to be used throughout the European continent. Similarly, at this time, chamomile was also used to give beer a bitter taste.

Recommended dose of chamomile

Like all food or drink, chamomile should also be consumed with measure, since everything that is consumed in excess is bad and harmful, since the body becomes saturated with the substances and components of said food or drink and this begins to cause side effects and negative reactions.

In the case of chamomile, the recommended dose is a maximum of 3 or 4 cups of chamomile tea a day. In the same way, we can evaluate how our body reacts to the intake of the drink and thus reduce the dose in case of an allergic reaction or symptom out of place.

Characteristics of chamomile

Chamomile is an herb, family of daisies , so it does not have a large size. The stem of this can measure up to 25 centimeters, and in a few cases it can reach the height of 60 cm. This herb has elongated leaves and small flowers, the diameter of the flowers is 2.5 centimeters and they are white with a yellow osculum. Chamomile grows wild in meadows, adapts easily to climatic changes and can be grown in pots and home gardens.

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Scientific name of chamomile

Chamomile is known by various names. Its common name is chamomile -of course-, but it can also be called chamomile or Roman, while its scientific name is chamaemelum nobile.

Common name of chamomile

Being an herb used worldwide, chamomile has several names. Its common or common name can be any of the following :

  • Chamomile.
  • Common chamomile.
  • German chamomile.
  • Maroon.

For its part, in English it also has several names, which are:

  • Chamomile
  • German chamomile.
  • Hungarian camomile.
  • Crown mayweed.

Mapuche name of chamomile

In America we can get several dialects or indigenous languages , also called Amerindian, which belong to the communities that already inhabited the American continent when the conquerors arrived in this land.

Many of these languages have been preserved over time , as they are part of the heritage of our continent and each country has adopted them respectively as part of its idiosyncrasy.

Even many words from these languages ​​have passed into the dialect or the language of the people , these are known as “Americanisms”, as they are words that come from these languages ​​that have been accepted by the Spanish language academy.

But well, in the case of chamomile, there is no other name by which this herb can be recognized, but “chamomile” is the name given to it and with which the plant has been identified from its earliest days. applications.

Chemical composition of chamomile

Chamomile contains several essential oils in its chemical composition , these are the ones that contain the active principles that make it a plant with beneficial properties for the body.

The essential oils contained in the chamomile plant have various substances such as chamazulene and acids such as thyglyic and antiemic acid. Also, in the internal composition of the plant, we can get tannins, which are substances with antioxidant properties.

Another compound that occurs in chamomile are flavonoids , which are those that benefit blood circulation and reduce the chances of cardiovascular problems. Flavonoids can also prevent the action of free radicals, which is why it is believed that they prevent cancer, as well as reduce bad cholesterol.

Regarding vitamins, chamomile has vitamin C and has a concentration of 8% of minerals, which makes it a very nutritious herb.

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Benefits and properties of chamomile

The main use of chamomile is in the preparation of tea or infusions, where the flowers of this herb are used, either dry or fresh. These drinks can have a relaxing effect on the human body, as it has a sedative action on the nervous system and also acts as an antispasmodic and relieves body aches and pains.

Likewise, the infusion or chamomile tea can also be used externally as in hot or cold compresses, in this way we can enjoy its anti-inflammatory effect. This method is one of the most used in terms of eye problems such as conjunctivitis, skin inflammations and problems with hemorrhoids.

Chamomile can also be used as an aesthetic treatment , both on the skin and on the hair, in the latter it can even have a toning effect and dye or lighten the hair.

Another use of chamomile where great beneficial effects can be achieved is from the essential oil that is extracted from its seeds. This oil is used to perform aromatherapy and other treatments in the aesthetic area, since it can improve healing, moisturize the skin and rejuvenate its condition.

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It is good for hair, how to use it?

Chamomile has very beneficial properties for the hair , since it has substances in its composition that can provide an improvement to it, both in terms of softness, strength and color.

Chamomile can repair damaged hair , prevent excess oil, regenerate hair to make it look softer, fresher, more manageable and shiny, as well as eliminate dandruff problems.

However, one of its best known and most widely used uses is the natural hair lightening treatment . Chamomile manages to lighten the hair thanks to its pigments, which are apigenin and azulene. Apigenin is a yellow pigment, which can be absorbed by the hair fiber and thus adopt this color, on the other hand, azulene is a darker pigment that neutralizes yellow and instead produces white. But, this together results in light hair with very nice yellow highlights.

In addition, these above properties also help the hair look more shiny . For this, you should only use chamomile tea on your hair, let it rest and then wash normally.

To take advantage of the properties of chamomile in your hair, you can also choose to apply a little oil or chamomile tea in your commonly used shampoo and thus each time you use it you will be providing the benefits of this herb.

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What benefits does it bring for the skin and face?

The benefits of chamomile are not limited only to relaxing, sedative and anti-inflammatory effects, but this herb also has properties that are of great help in caring for the health of the skin.

Chamomile is used in a specialized way as one more ingredient in different cosmetic products, since it has a very good effect on the skin . Chamomile can provide a calming effect when used topically, as it is a natural anti-inflammatory and pain reliever.

In this way, chamomile can be used as a treatment to heal wounds , inflammations, eczema and other problems, diseases or disorders in the skin. Also, chamomile prevents the overproduction of sebum, that is, excess oil on the surface of the skin, which is good for treating acne.

To use chamomile as an anti-acne treatment, you just have to prepare a well-concentrated infusion of chamomile and dip a cotton ball in it, then rub the cotton on the skin and let it rest, then rinse with cold water . Repeat this treatment every day and you will be able to perceive the results.

Serves to slim chamomile

When chamomile is consumed in a tea or infusion, many antioxidants can be ingested, just as in any other tea. But, likewise, chamomile is also an antispasmodic, which makes it act as a digestive that improves and benefits the processes of our gastrointestinal tract.

As well, chamomile can help the body control appetite and anxiety, which is beneficial if we want to lose weight. In addition, it helps regulate the level of glucose in the blood and prevents insomnia.

All these aspects together can be of great help if you are in the process of losing weight . Although it is not a drink or treatment that will make you shed all the extra kilos that you have overnight, it is a complementary method that helps make the process faster, easier and more bearable.

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Pregnancy and chamomile, what are the effects it causes?

Because chamomile produces a sedative and relaxing effect on the body, it is recommended in women who are in the second trimester of their pregnancy , because at this stage is when the belly is noticeably widened and you can suffer from back pain and in the pelvis.

In this way, chamomile can act by relieving these pains and improving a woman’s sleep, avoiding disorders such as insomnia. Likewise, chamomile also has an anti-nausea effect and improves digestion, prevents constipation, heartburn and urine infections.

Therefore, we can conclude that it is a totally safe and beneficial herb for pregnant women. Likewise, it must be borne in mind that it should not be consumed in excess and consult with your doctor for any details on the matter.

During breastfeeding, what causes?

When breastfeeding, women should be aware that there are some foods and beverages that can affect the production of breast milk. In the case of chamomile, the risk is very low, since it does not have a high level of toxicity and therefore its moderate consumption does not cause any effect on breastfeeding.

Regarding the superficial or topical use of chamomile, this is not recommended , as it can lead to allergic reactions such as dermatitis. Therefore, this herb can only be used as a tea or infusion to take advantage of its anti-inflammatory and digestive power.

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Is chamomile good for babies and children?

Although, chamomile is an herb that has properties that help relieve pain in the skin , such as stomach pain and other gastrointestinal problems. However, a child should not need this type of treatment, especially if it is a breastfeeding baby, since milk contains all the nutrients and properties that its body needs.

Chamomile is a beneficial drink , but it is not recommended for children , neither as a treatment nor as an addition to their nutrition, since their digestive system works differently from that of an adult, and chamomile could cause a satiety effect that does not It will allow you to eat later, which can affect the nutrition and weight gain of the baby or child.

As for colic cases, there is no record of a child being cured of colic problems as well as infant colic simply by using chamomile tea. So we should not use it as a sole treatment in these cases either.

Chamomile for diabetes, is it good? Why?

People with diabetes must have a special diet and daily insulin treatment in order to control their blood glucose level. However, chamomile has also been found to help regulate blood sugar , so it is very useful to use it as a treatment for those suffering from type 2 diabetes.

It is recommended to drink a chamomile tea after meals to avoid alterations in glucose level. Also, this method will not only help you in this aspect , but chamomile also speeds up metabolism and helps burn fat.

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Cosmetic uses of chamomile

Chamomile contains a wide variety of active ingredients that make it produce certain beneficial effects on the condition of the skin, such as hair. For this reason, it is used in many cosmetic products and beauty treatments.

The most common use of chamomile is through tea or infusions , which are later used to be applied topically in the treatment to be performed.

Regarding its use on the skin, chamomile can heal minor wounds and enhance healing, it also helps prevent infections and can also eliminate them. Likewise, chamomile is used for the following purposes:

  • Regenerates the skin
  • Serves as a skin tonic
  • Reduces dark circles and bags under the eyes
  • It is excellent moisturizer
  • Relieves burns
  • Remove wrinkles
  • Avoid dark spots
  • Eliminate acne
  • Deflame
  • Improves dry and damaged hair
  • Provides shine to hair
  • May lighten hair
  • Repair split ends

Does it lighten the hair? Why?

Chamomile is capable of lightening the tone of the hair naturally, this thanks to the fact that it has pigments, some called apigenin, which is what provides the yellow coloration that is absorbed by the hair fibers. And a second pigment, azulene, which is a purple pigment, which neutralizes the yellow color and as a result a white with reflections is obtained.

Keep in mind that this effect can be achieved on hair that is naturally light , because if you have dark brown or black hair, you will not be able to obtain a discoloration thanks to the effect of the chamomile pigments.

This method is also used by people who want to keep their hair blonde or light brown.

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Medicinal uses of chamomile

It is clear that chamomile is known for its medicinal uses , since it has anti-inflammatory and relaxing properties and improves digestion, but it can also be used for other medicinal uses, which are:

  • Anti- allergy use , this can help alleviate allergic skin reactions.
  • Serves as an antispasmodic, it can prevent muscle problems and digestive spasms.
  • It has power as an antihistamine , which helps reduce skin irritation.
  • It is anti-inflammatory , it can reduce inflammation when used topically.
  • Helps heal minor wounds quickly and heals burns.
  • It is used to treat eye conditions , such as conjunctivitis. Reduces swelling, itching and eliminates bacteria.
  • It is a diuretic drink , it helps prevent fluid retention and eliminates toxins.
  • It can help regulate a woman’s menstrual period .
  • Helps reduce fever .

Culinary uses of chamomile

The main culinary use of chamomile is in the preparation of its tea or infusion , in which fresh or dried chamomile flowers are used. Also, but less frequently, we can get chamomile as an ingredient in other drinks, jam, as well as desserts, ice cream, and other types of sweet preparations.

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Chamomile against cancer, is it good?

An investigation carried out at the Ohio State University (United States), has revealed that in chamomile a compound known as apigenin is obtained, which has the power to contribute to the elimination of cancer cells . This compound is also found in celery and parsley.

Research certifies that this compound acts effectively against cancer cells , especially when it comes to lung cancer.

Normally, cancer cells do not work the same as normal cells, so they do not die, but reproduce and grow without measure . But, thanks to the substance contained in chamomile, this process is reversed, so cancer cells begin to die.

Chamomile, does it have an expiration date?

These types of products do not have an expiration date, especially when they are kept dry, that is, when we keep dry chamomile leaves, either to prepare tea or another recipe.

What can deteriorate is the quality or concentration of this herb, since over time it becomes detached and loses its essential oil and therefore its properties may be reduced. But, when it comes to expiration, there is no date where this type of product can rot or ferment.

Chamomile side effects

Chamomile can react unfavorably when it interacts with certain medications such as warfarin, heparin, clopidogrel, ticlopidine or pentoxifylline, that is, anticoagulant medications, since it can lead to bleeding because chamomile can increase blood flow.

Likewise, chamomile can also interact unfavorably with other medications , since it alters the body’s metabolism process.

Another side effect you may experience is an allergic reaction , which can range from a skin rash, irritation and itching, to a sore throat and breathing problems.

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Chamomile Safety Data Sheet

The only warning that exists about chamomile is the one that is directed to people who suffer from allergies to the components of this herb or to the pollen of the plant, since they can trigger serious effects on the body.

Similarly, it is not recommended to use chamomile in the woman’s first trimester of pregnancy , since it can lead to an abortive process.

Chamomile toxicity

Chamomile is an herb with a low level of toxicity , in fact, studies where it was experimented using a quantity of chamomile on the skin for several days, has confirmed that it does not cause any adverse reaction.

The only case where you can experience harmful effects from chamomile is in the case of direct allergy to this herb , which – due to its low toxicity – is very unlikely, but this possibility should not be ruled out.

Chamomile nutritional information

Chamomile is a herb very rich in vitamins, proteins and other substances that make it a good medicinal alternative and the main ingredient in certain aesthetic treatments. But, for its part, regarding the other nutritional values, we find that, for each cup of chamomile, that is, 200 ml, we can get:

  • Two calories.
  • 0 g of fat.
  • 4 grams of carbohydrates.
  • 0 gr of protein.

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Kathie Sand always saw the world of beauty as the terrain on which to build her professional career, a goal that was clear to her when she was only 15 years old. Her great concern to expand knowledge led her to settle in Paris where she studied hand in hand with the best beauty professionals and with the most advanced techniques for skin care.

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