Chamomile is not only the most popular herbal tea around the world; it’s also one of the most versatile and useful herbs.
Here are 10 reasons chamomile can make your life more awesome.
It really is relaxing
For adults, chamomile can help take the edge off stress, tension, and anxiety. Chamomile is strong enough to soothe little ones to sleep. However, it’s not quite strong enough to put an adult to sleep unless you take it late in the evening and you’re already tired. If I have too much caffeine, chamomile takes the edge off right away. I can feel the effects within minutes.
It’s a mild pain reliever
Special compounds in chamomile provide natural relief for mild pain, inflammation, and soreness. The tea is a popular folk remedy for menstrual cramps. You can also fill a muslin bag with some chamomile, soak it in a little water, and place it directly onto a toothache. A warm moist chamomile tea bag placed over the ear can provide relief for an earache.
Chamomile is soothing to the skin
If your skin is red, inflamed, or you’re experiencing a breakout of acne, chamomile can help soothe the affected area, as well as kill bacteria. Simply brew a strong cup of tea and gently apply the liquid over the inflamed areas.
It’s a great digestive aid
Chamomile’s natural anti-inflammatory properties not only help relieve mild pain, they also soothe inflammation in the digestive tract. Bloating, soreness, and irritation are all reasons to use chamomile tea, especially in combination with mint. Chamomile’s ability to help relieve stress make it the perfect herb to use if you’re dealing with I.B.S., or other stress-related digestive upset.
Try chamomile next time you’re under the weather
A hot cup of chamomile tea can help you get some much-needed rest during a cold or flu. It encourages your body to sweat out toxins, relieves inflammation in the sinuses, and is antibacterial. One of my favorite ways to use chamomile during cold and flu is to make a steam with it. Place a couple spoonfuls of chamomile into a bowl. Pour boiling water over it, cover your head with a towel, and inhale the steam. It helps open the sinuses, and provide relief.
Soothe irritated eyes
Make a cup of chamomile tea and strain it very well to make a healing compress for swollen, red, hot, tired eyes. Chamomile helps kill bacteria that can cause irritation, and might also be helpful for sties.
Natural baby care
Chamomile is my favorite herb to use with babies and children. Chamomile’s mild analgesic properties make it ideal to help with teething pain. Rub a few drops of the tea onto sore gums to provide relief and relaxation. Chamomile tea can help ease colic and indigestion. All you need is a tiny spoonful for little ones. You can also use an eye dropper to administer the tea. Babies are tiny, so they don’t need much. Another way to soothe little ones is to add a cup of chamomile tea to their bath. It’s relaxing, and beneficial for dry skin and might be soothing for diaper rash.
Older children (over 6) can have a cup of chamomile tea with a little milk and honey before bed.
Make it iced!
If you haven’t had chamomile as an iced tea, you’re missing something special. Chamomile has a light, sweet flavor that smells and tastes like summer. Instead of using a squeeze of lemon in this iced tea, try a squeeze of fresh strawberries. Delish!
Instead of sun tea, try making a moon tea
Moon tea is the same concept as sun tea with one obvious difference: you brew the tea in the moonlight instead of the sun. Place chamomile flowers in a glass jar, fill it with cool water rather than hot water, put the lid on the jar, and place it outside where it will brew in the light of the moon. First thing in the morning, strain your tea and enjoy. Moon teas are really refreshing, and are believed to enhance dreaming and intuition. Try it and see for yourself.
Chamomile in desserts
I found three creative ways to use chamomile tea in very non-traditional ways: in sorbet, cake, and cookies. The cake recipe can be modified for gluten-free and vegan diets.
Check out this vegan sorbet recipe!
This chamomile cake recipe can be modified for gluten-free, vegan, and paleo diets. Check it out here
This looked like a fun cookie recipe, and had to include it. These cookies are vegan and gluten-free. Check it out here
Here is a quick little video that explains the difference between store-bought chamomile tea bags, and fantastic organic Loose Leaf chamomile.