Chamomile tea is an herb made from chamomile flower that provides several health benefits. The flowers are dried, and then mixed in boiling water to make chamomile tea. Many people enjoy chamomile tea as a caffeine-free alternative and somewhat sweet taste. In addition, chamomile tea is full of antioxidants that can help reduce the risk of multiple conditions, including heart disease and cancer. Here are 7 evidence-based health benefits of chamomile tea.
1. Protects Against Cancer
The antioxidants in chamomile tea ”apigenin” may reduce the occurrence of many types of cancer. In the test tube study, they have shown apigenin to fight cancer cells, particularly breast, digestive tract, skin, prostate, and uterus cancers. A large-scale study of 537 participants found that those who drank chamomile tea 2-6 times a week were much less probable to develop thyroid cancer than those who did not drink chamomile tea. These results are promising but, to conclude on the role of chamomile tea in cancer prevention, we need high-quality human study. (1, 2, 3, 4)
The antioxidant compounds in chamomile tea such as apigenin may protect against cancer and provide several health benefits.
2. Helps People with diabetes
Chamomile tea can help lower blood sugar levels. The anti-inflammatory properties of chamomile tea can reduce the damage of pancreatic cells when your blood sugar levels are high. Your pancreatic health is fundamental because it generates insulin, the hormone that removes sugar from your blood. Study in people with diabetes, those who consumed chamomile tea daily with meals for eight weeks had reduced blood sugar levels. In addition, several animal studies show that chamomile tea may decrease fasting blood sugar and may also be useful in preventing blood sugar spikes after eating. (5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
Chamomile tea may lower fasting blood sugar and prevent post-meal increases. People with diabetes who drank chamomile tea every day for 8 weeks had decreased blood sugar levels.
3. Helps People With Insomnia
Chamomile tea has some unique properties that can improve sleep quality. For example, it contains an antioxidant apigenin that connects your brain to certain receptors and decreases insomnia. Postpartum females who consumed chamomile tea for two weeks noticed better sleep quality compared to the control group. They also had fewer depression symptoms, which are often associated with sleeping disorders. Another study discovered that people who consumed 270 mg of chamomile extract twice daily for 28 days had less night time awakening and fell asleep 15 minutes quicker than those who did not consume the extract. (11, 12, 13, 14)
The antioxidant apigenin in chamomile tea can link your brain to various receptors, which may help improve sleep quality.
4. Improves Heart Health
Chamomile tea is rich in flavones antioxidants. Flavones are flavonoids that can help reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which are significant markers of heart disease. One research in 64 diabetic patients discovered that those drinking chamomile tea with snacks had significant changes in their complete levels of cholesterol, triglyceride, and LDL (bad) cholesterol compare to those drinking water. To understand the role of chamomile tea in heart health, we need more studies. (15, 16, 17)
Drinking chamomile tea daily may decrease total cholesterol, triglyceride, and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.
5. Can Improve Digestion
Proper digestion is important for your overall health. Evidence shows that chamomile can help with proper digestion and may reduce the danger of certain gastrointestinal conditions. Studies in mice have found that the chamomile extract can protect against diarrhea because of its anti-inflammatory properties. Another research in mice discovered chamomile can prevent stomach ulcers. This means it may decrease stomach acidity and inhibit the growth of ulcer-developing bacteria. Despite these findings, we need further human studies to verify the role of chamomile in proper digestion. (18, 19, 20)
Animal studies show that chamomile can aid in proper digestion and may prevent gastrointestinal disease.
6. Boosts Immune Health
People usually use chamomile tea is as a remedy to prevent and treat the common cold, but there is no concrete evidence to conclude. There are some anecdotal claims that chamomile can relieve sore throats. Many studies have shown that it works as an excellent disease preventive herb. In addition, it fights harmful bacteria and can boost your immune system. (21)
Chamomile tea may boost immunity and treat common cold and sore throats.
7. Relieves Depression and Anxiety
The world today is busy, which can make us feel even more nervous and stressed. Chamomile tea is a mild relaxant and acts as an efficient natural sedative, decreasing anxiety. There is some proof that chamomile may decrease anxiety and depression severity, but it may be possible to use it as aromatherapy or as a supplement. (22, 23, 24, 25)
Chamomile may reduce the severity of anxiety and depression.
Other health benefits of chamomile tea
Chamomile tea’s following health advantages are mostly anecdotal and not endorsed by scientific evidence:
Prevents bone loss: Some people claim that chamomile tea can play a part in preventing bone loss, benefiting people with osteoporosis. However, there is no evidence to support this claim. (29)
Reduces period pain in women: Chamomile tea has pain-relieving and antispasmodic qualities, according to WebMD. It relaxes the uterus and reduces prostaglandin output inflammation and pain.
Drinking chamomile tea does not cause side effects. Some reports show chamomile allergic reaction, which is most probable to happen in people allergic to daisy family plants, such as ragweed and chrysanthemums. In addition, direct contact of cosmetic products containing chamomile may irritate the eyes. This can lead to conjunctivitis and inflammation of the eye. However, the safety of chamomile in young kids, pregnant or nursing females, or people with liver or kidney disease has not been studied.
Chamomile tea is rich in some strong antioxidants that can have a range of health benefits, including cancer and heart disease reduction. While some studies are promising, but there have been insufficient studies to conclude on its health effects. They have conducted many of the studies in animals, and it cannot pass on the results to humans. Chamomile, however, is safe to drink, and for its delightful flavor and comforting aroma, many people enjoy drinking it.
Suggested article: 10 health benefits of turmeric tea you should know
- Apigenin: a promising molecule for cancer prevention. Pharm Res. 2010.
- The effect of Greek herbal tea consumption on thyroid cancer: a case-control study. Eur J Public Health. 2015.
- Chamomile: A herbal medicine of the past with bright future. Mol Med Rep. 2010.
- Chamomile tea: herbal hypoglycemic alternative for conventional medicine. Pak J Pharm Sci. 2014.
- Risk factors contributing to type 2 diabetes and recent advances in the treatment and prevention. Int J Med Sci. 2014.
- Effects of an intervention with drinking chamomile tea on sleep quality and depression in sleep disturbed postnatal women: a randomized controlled trial. J Adv Nurs. 2016.
- Preliminary examination of the efficacy and safety of a standardized chamomile extract for chronic primary insomnia: a randomized placebo-controlled pilot study. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2011.
- Effectiveness of chamomile tea on glycemic control and serum lipid profile in patients with type 2 diabetes. J Endocrinol Invest. 2015.
- Antidiarrheal and antioxidant activities of chamomile (Matricaria recutita L.) decoction extract in rats. J Ethnopharmacol. 2014.
- Assessment of some Herbal Drugs for Prophylaxis of Peptic Ulcer. Iran J Pharm Res. 2014.
- Chamomile Tea May Fight Colds, Menstrual Cramps. WebMD