Origin: The term chamomile is derived from the Greek word “chamomaela” or “ground apple”. This is due to its peculiar, refreshing scent of an apple. Chamomile is a very popular herb and has been used since a thousand years now. It’s been in use since the ancient European times. In Spain, chamomile is famously known as “mantazilla” or “little apple”. Chamomile is used for its fragrance, relaxing properties, and its soothing flavor. Chamomile’s history is as vast as different cultures and continents.
Egyptians have been known for worshipping gods with Chamomile, as they firmly believed that this herb cures fever. Different cultures consider Chamomile significant in different ways. The Spanish people are known for using Chamomile as a flavoring agent.
In Rome, Chamomile is called Chamaemelum nobile. Romans are known for making a beverage out of Chamomile, they use it for its healing properties. Britishers are known for brewing Chamomile and using it as a bittering agent in Beer.
In Germany, chamomile is called Matricaria chamomilla. It is extensively cultivated and used in Germany for its healing properties. German chamomile is also called wild chamomile because it grows wildly like a weed on the roadside. This kind of chamomile has a strong flavor and smell, whereas the Roman chamomile has a sweeter flavor.
In Morocco, chamomile is known as Cladanthus mixtus. North America, South Africa, India, and Australia are also known for growing and using Chamomile. In India, this herb has a great medicinal value and also serves as a great skin care herb. From beverage to skincare packs this herb does wonders to the skin. In India, it is popularly known as Babune ka phal.
The monks from Southeast Asia are known for using Chamomile for traditional home remedies. They also plant Chamomile with other plants because of their healing property. They believe planting Chamomile next to an ailing plant can boost their recovery. About 7,50,000- 1 million pound of chamomile is imported into the US each year, mainly for tea purposes.
Scientifically: Chamomile belongs to the Asteraceae family of plants and bears daisy-like white flowers. Chamomile tea is one of the world’s most popular herbal teas and more than one million cups are consumed every day. Tea bags or tea infusions with different variants are available all over the world. Chamomile tea powder or chamomile flower powder is famous for its medicinal and healing properties. Chamomile is a great herb with soothing properties, works as a great anti-inflammatory agent, and is full of antioxidants. It works to heal cuts, wounds, and bruises. Due to its anti-inflammatory benefits, it works great against acne, acne scars, and dark spots. The tea is also great for the skin as it is full of antioxidants.
Chamomile flowers look like a daisy flower. The stem of the chamomile can be anywhere between 6-24 inches. The flowers are harvested and dried for tea.
Usage: Chamomile is a traditional herb famous for its medicinal value. This herb is not only used as a beverage but also as a main ingredient in cosmetics, therapies, spas and also as home remedies. Chamomile herbal tea is used in treating different diseases like indigestion, diarrhea, constipation, flu, and fever. It also works great for babies with teething issues and diaper rash. The strong infusion helps in relieving menstrual pain, can also be used as a gargle and a soothing eye cleanser.
To make a healing concoction, take the leaves and flower and steep them in boiling water for 10-15 minutes. Use this skin wash, hair wash or mouth wash.
People who are allergic to pollen-bearing plants should avoid using this herb. Pregnant or lactating mothers should avoid using Chamomile.
Chamomile is also available in the form of essential oil or capsule. Chamomile tea relaxes nerves and nervous system, which in turn induces sleep. It helps in boosting metabolism and immunity.
Here are some diys with Chamomile:
- Chamomile tea is effective in treating sunburn. Brew some tea and let it chill for some time. Soak a face towel and then apply on the burnt area.
- Chamomile tea bags work excellently in reducing dark circles. Just refrigerate used tea bags and place the chilled bags over the eyes. It lightens and brightens the under eye area.
- Use chamomile tea as a hair rinse after shampooing your hair. It makes hair smooth and dandruff free.
- Chamomile tea works excellent as an exfoliator. Take some finely ground tea or Take a tea bag and empty the bag in a bowl and a teaspoon of honey. Mix well and gently massage it. Use this for 5 minutes and then rinse.
- Take some chamomile tea and mix a spoon of oatmeal and a teaspoon of almond oil to it. Mix well. Apply this mask and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Rinse later. This mask is very moisturizing and nourishing. It provides all the nutrients to the skin.
- Make your own cleanser with chamomile tea at home. Take 2 tablespoons of tea and add a tablespoon of milk to it with a pinch of turmeric. Mix well and massage the face with it. Leave it on for 5 minutes and rinse.
- Take some freshly plucked chamomile flowers and grind them into a fine paste with a few drops of water. Apply this mixture and leave it on 10 minutes. This helps in relaxing the facial muscles and soothes any skin irritation.