Parts Used & Where Grown
Chamomile, a member of the daisy family, is native to Europe and western Asia. German chamomile is the most commonly used. The dried and fresh flowers are used medicinally.
How It Works
The flowers of chamomile contain 1–2% volatile oils including alpha-bisabolol, alpha-bisabolol oxides A & B, and matricin (usually converted to chamazulene).1 Other active constituents include the flavonoids apigenin, luteolin, and quercetin. These active ingredients contribute to chamomile’s anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and smooth-muscle relaxing action, particularly in the gastrointestinal tract.2,3,4,5
Topical applications of chamomile have been shown to be moderately effective in the treatment of eczema.6,7 One double-blind trial found it to be about 60% as effective as 0.25% hydrocortisone cream.8 Topical use of chamomile ointment was also found to successfully treat mild stasis ulcers and bed sores in elderly bedridden patients.9