Chamomile essential oil
Chamomile oil has always been a widely used remedy in Europe. Chamomile was already worshipped by the Teutons for its sun-like appearance. The oil is still very much appreciated today and can be found in many things of daily life such as medicines, skin creams, food and much more. The scent of camomile reminds of apple. In fact, the name camomile comes from the Greek ”Chamaileon”, which means ”apple of the earth”.
Chamomile oil has a large number of positive effects on our psyche. The oil, for example, has a strong anxiety-relieving effect. Many people in our society suffer from anxiety. This mental illness severely restricts everyday life and the personal freedom of decision of those affected.Chamomile oil can counteract this. The oil also has a mood-enhancing effect, so that a negative or depressive mood can be effectively combated. Due to its calming effect chamomile oil can also be used very well against the consequences of a stressful everyday life.
The unique ingredients in chamomile oil have a very broad spectrum of action. Chamomile is not only known for its strong anti-inflammatory effects, but also has numerous other properties that make it an indispensable remedy for every home pharmacy. Chamomile oil has analgesic, antiseptic and antispasmodic effects. All these properties make chamomile an excellent remedy for the following health problems:
Chamomile oil against gastritis
Gastritis is an inflammation of the gastric mucosa that is usually caused by an unhealthy lifestyle, such as excessive alcohol consumption or smoking, but can also have a bacterial origin. Due to the pronounced anti-inflammatory effect of chamomile oil, this inflammation can be effectively combated by oral ingestion.
Chamomile oil against digestive disorders
Digestive disorders have very different causes. They can be caused, for example, by a disturbance of the gastric fauna as well as by a lack of secretion of gastric acid. Camomile oil offers several solutions to this problem: On the one hand, it promotes blood circulation. If the cells of the gastric mucosa are supplied with more blood, they are stimulated to release more gastric juice, which makes it easier to digest food that is difficult to digest in our stomach. The nutrients released from the food can also be transferred more quickly into the bloodstream through increased blood circulation, which is an additional digestive effect. If the digestive disorder is caused by problems with the intestinal fauna, the anti-inflammatory properties of chamomile oil can be helpful. The oil kills those bacteria that are harmful to our digestive tract and gives the digestive bacteria more leeway to do their job.
Due to its antispasmodic properties, chamomile oil can also be used for painful stomach cramps. It prevents the release of neurotransmitters in the peripheral muscles of our digestive tract, thus alleviating the cramps.
Chamomile oil against cancer
According to recent studies, chamomile oil also shows effect against many different types of cancer. The exact mechanism of action has not yet been clarified, but one study showed that chamomile oil could kill up to 93% of breast cancer cells.
Chamomile oil as a painkiller
In addition to its anti-inflammatory effect, chamomile oil is particularly known for its analgesic properties. The active ingredient bisabolol is responsible for this. This ingredient prevents the transmission of pain signals between nerve cells. Through this effect, the oil can be used against a variety of painful health problems such as migraine, toothache and ear pain.
Chamomile oil for skin care
Chamomile oil is one of the few essential oils that has no irritating effect on our skin. This rare property makes it an excellent skin care product. Due to its anti-inflammatory effect, the oil can be used against inflammatory skin problems such as acne. It also helps against itching and general skin pain.
Chamomile oil to promote wound healing
Chamomile oil has several positive properties which promote wound healing. The oil, for example, has a strong stimulating effect on blood circulation. This property is particularly advantageous for burn injuries. The increased blood circulation stimulates the cells to divide more, so that injured areas of the skin can regenerate faster. However, the oil should not be used for open wounds due to this effect, as this can counteract stopping the bleeding.
A second positive effect that the oil has on wound healing is its anti-inflammatory properties. Open wounds tend to become inflamed very quickly. Chamomile oil kills invading bacteria and thus prevents a negative influence of bacteria on wound healing.
Depending on the field of application, chamomile oil can be used in many different ways. If you want to apply the oil to your skin, simply mix a few drops of the oil with a standard skin cream. For oral use it is recommended to take it with a spoonful of honey, as the taste of chamomile oil is very intense. The healing power of chamomile can also be found in chamomile tea, but it is much higher in the oil because of the much higher concentration of active ingredients. You can also use chamomile oil very well as a bath additive. Simply add a few drops to your bath water. Used as a classic fragrance oil, you can simply heat it in a diffuser or a fragrance lamp.
Production of chamomile oil
Chamomile oil is obtained by steam distillation from the dried flower heads of the chamomile. A distinction is made between ‘Blue Chamomile Oil’, which is obtained from ‘Real Chamomile’, and ‘Roman Chamomile Oil‘, which is obtained from ‘Roman Chamomile’. Blue chamomile oil has an intense blue colour, for which the ingredient chamazulene is responsible. Roman chamomile oil, on the other hand, has a yellow, slightly greenish colour. At least 20 kg of dried flower heads are needed to produce 1 litre of chamomile oil.
Ingredients in chamomile oil
Chamomile oil has many unique active ingredients that are rarely found in other essential oils. The most important are:
Chamazulene, spathulenol, bisabolol, Farnesen, enindicycloethers, chamaviolin, antheocotulide,
Chamomile was already mentioned by Carl von Linne in 1792 in his work ‘Species Plantarum’. In the Middle Ages it played an important role in herbal medicine. The historian Dr. Arndt Assfelder wrote in his dissertation (1) a detailed report on the use of chamomile in the Middle Ages. But its medical effects were known much earlier. In tombs of pharaohs, residues of chamomile blossoms have been found, which suggest that this plant already played a very central role at that time. In the ancient Romans chamomile was consecrated to the sun, which is probably due to its appearance.
Chamomile is a plant within the composite family that is found throughout Asia, North America and Europe. It also copes with very poor weather conditions, but prefers sunny locations such as meadows and fields with nutrient-rich and loamy soils. Chamomile flowers yellow with white petals. There are numerous cultivars, but only the real and the blue chamomile are used for the production of essential oils.
A large part of the chamomile traded comes from breeding stock. The main suppliers are Brazil, Mexico and India. Chamomile is usually grown outdoors, as it is not worth growing it in a greenhouse. Per hectare of cultivated area a yield of nearly 150000 kg of dry chamomile flowers is expected, whereby the plant can be harvested 3 times a year. The harvest is mechanical and takes place at different times depending on the growing area. The right time for the chamomile harvest is when approx. 2/3 of the petals have fallen off the flower head. Only the yellow flower heads are sold as medicines.
Read more about the chamomile on Wikipedia