The health benefits of chamomile essential oil can be attributed to its properties as an antispasmodic, antiseptic, antibiotic, antidepressant, antineuralgic, antiphlogistic, carminative, and cholagogic substance. Moreover, it is a cicatrizant, emmenagogue, analgesic, febrifuge, hepatic, sedative, nervine, digestive, tonic, antispasmodic, bactericidal, sudorific, stomachic, anti-inflammatory, anti-infectious, vermifuge, and a vulnerary substance.
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What is Chamomile Oil?
Chamomile oil is extracted from the flowers of the chamomile plant, which is very popular as a flowering plant. There are two types of chamomile, the Roman chamomile, which is scientifically known as Anthemis nobilis and the German chamomile, whose scientific name is Matricaria chamomilla. Although the essential oils extracted from both varieties are quite similar in some medicinal properties, their composition is different and they do possess certain specific qualities that are worth noting.
Roman chamomile oil is composed of alpha pinene, beta pinene, camphene, caryophyllene, sabinene, myrcene, gamma-terpinene, pinocarvone, farsenol, cineole, propyl angelate, and butyl angelate. German chamomile oil, on the other hand, is composed of azulene (also called chamazulene), alpha bisabolol, bisabolol oxide-A & B, and bisabolene oxide-A.
While Roman chamomile oil is more calming and works as a better emmenagogue, German chamomile oil is a very powerful anti-inflammatory agent due to the presence of a compound called azulene. Azulene is a nitrogenous compound which is responsible for giving the oil its characteristic deep blue color. There are several other medicinal properties of chamomile oil, and the properties given below include those of the Roman as well as the German variety, except where mentioned otherwise.
Health Benefits of Chamomile Essential Oil
Removes Toxic Agents
As a sudorific, both varieties of chamomile oil induce profuse perspiration, which helps to remove toxins and agents that cause infections while simultaneously cooling down the body and effectively providing relief from fever, thus serving as a febrifuge.
Both varieties have very good antiseptic and antibiotic properties which do not let biotic infections develop, which arise due to bacteria and fungi. They also eliminate infections that are already present. These are good vermifuge agents as well, which kill all sorts of intestinal worms. If applied to the hair, it kills lice and mites, keeping the hair and scalp free from infections and damage.
Both varieties have been found to be very effective in fighting depression. They eliminate feelings of sadness, depression, disappointment, and sluggishness while inducing a sort of happy or charged feeling. Even smelling these oils can help a lot in overcoming depression and bringing about a good mood.
Roman chamomile is effective in calming down annoyance, anger, and irritation, particularly in small children, while German chamomile is effective on adults in curing inflammation, particularly when it is located in the digestive or urinary system. Both varieties reduce blood pressure and curb the swelling of blood vessels as well.
Being a stomachic, they tone up the stomach and ensure its proper function. They also promote the secretion of digestive juices into the stomach and facilitate digestion. Being hepatic, they ensure a good liver health and the proper flow of bile from it. They are also considered cholagogues, meaning that they increase the secretion of hydrochloric acid, bile, and enzymes in the stomach, thereby promoting digestion.
They cure dysfunctions of the circulatory system, stimulate circulation and detoxify the blood from toxins like uric acid. Thus they help to cure ailments like rheumatism and arthritis, which are caused due to improper circulation and accumulation of uric acid. These abilities classify them as good antiphlogistics, agents which reduce swelling and edema.
They are very popular in the world of cosmetics, since they diminish the scars, marks, and spots on the skin and on the face, making them a cicatrizant. They also protect wounds, cuts, and bruises from becoming infected, therefore also serving as a vulnerary.
They have analgesic properties, which effectively reduce pain in the muscles and joints. They also decrease the severity of headaches, sinuses, toothaches, and bone injuries. They are also very effective in relieving the severe pain of neuralgia by constricting the blood vessels that surround the ninth cranial nerve and relieve the pressure.
Removes Excess Gas
They are very good at expelling gas from the intestines and stomach while also curbing additional gas formation. This also helps to relax the body and lower blood pressure. What is even more important is that the effect of the oil also eliminates the serious risks of excess gas, such as the trapping of gas in the windpipe, which can even be fatal.
Boosts Nervous System
They calm almost all nervous disturbances or hyper-reactions which result in convulsions, spasms, nervousness, and loss of control over limbs. They are nervine, meaning they keep the nerves and the nervous system in a state of good health and proper functioning.
Tones the Body
They are a tonic in nature, meaning that they tone up the skin, muscles, and internal organs.
Chamomile essential oils are anti-allergenic, and they help cure acne by removing toxins and cleaning sebaceous and eccrine glands through sweating. As a diuretic, they clean up the urinary system and the kidneys by stimulating increased urination. In addition, they detoxify the blood and even increase strength. They can help cure viral infections like mumps or measles and can be used in mouthwashes as well, in order to keep away bad breath and eliminate oral infections. German chamomile oil is a vasoconstrictor, so it reduces blood pressure by relaxing the constriction of vessels, thereby protecting heart health and reducing the chances of developing conditions like atherosclerosis.
Word of Caution: There are no specific risks of using either of the oils that have been discussed, except that it should be avoided if someone has a direct allergy to chamomile or to any other members of the Ragweed family, to which it belongs.