Matricaria Chamomilla (German)

(also Chamaemelum nobile – Roman)

Chamomile. Kachvan. Huang Chu Ju. Earth Apple. Plant Physician

What’s in a name? The name “chamomile” derives from the Greek “chamoemelon” meaning “earth apple” because its fragrance resembles apples. The Latin name “Matericaria” derives from “matrix” meaning “womb” or  “mater” meaning “mother”, a reference to the herbs ability to aid female complaints

Family | Asteraceae Family 

Where it grows | Native to Europe and now grown in many countries throughout the world. It is most often grown in Argentina, Belgium, Egypt, Germany, Hungary, Bulgaria, Poland and Russia.

Herbal Actions | Carminative. Anti-inflammatory. Antidiuretic. Antispasmodic. Antibacterial. Sedative. Anticoagulant. Emmenagogue 

Body Systems | Immune, Cardiovascular, Respiratory and Digestive Systems 

Parts Used | Flower head 

Energetics |Warm. Moist

Medicinal Uses | In general, German Chamomile is more useful for digestive upsets but Roman Chamomile is more useful as an antispasmodic

Used for digestive issues (indigestion, IBS, Gastritis ulcers, sooths irritation of the GI Tract etc.) 

Nervine: used for anxiety and stress induced insomnia. Helpful when moods are erratic or for depression. Useful for folks who are sensitive to any kind of pain.

Topical uses: Eczema, Irritated and itchy skin, inflammation and wound healing

Mouthwash for gingivitis and irritation of mouth and throat

Inhalation for upper respiratory tract issues

Great for babies: teething, earaches, intolerance to pain etc.

Suited for conditions where wind (tension) combines with heat (overstimulation, irritation) 

Reproductive benefits include: reducing anxiety during pregnancy and pre menstruation; Relieves cramping

More uses here

Contraindications | Some folks are allergic 

Preparation Methods | Fresh preparations preserve the relaxing volatile oils; dried herb bring out the bitters. Dried flowers; capsules; cream; salve; tea; tincture; bath products

Dosing Guidelines | 

Bath: soak 1 LB dried flowers in a tub of hot water

Capsules:  up to 6 300- 400 mg capsules a day

Tea:  1 to 2 tbsp dried flowers in a cup of hot water for 5-10 minutes; take three to four times per day 

Tincture: about 3-6 mL three times a day 

Topical: for insect bites, mix 1 tsp aloe vera gel with 2 gtt chamomile EO and apply to bite

Mix 50/50 with apple juice for kids with ADHD, growing pains, fevers, restlessness, nightmares and irritability

Jewish take on it | Avodah Zarah 29a-b – Talmudic medicine

The Gemara also offers general recommendations for a healthy body, teaching that there are six things help the sick to recover from sickness and have a real curative effect – that is they not only help remove the symptoms, but that they heal the illness and strengthen the body. These include: cabbage, beets, dry sisin, tripe (the lining of the stomach), womb and the lobe above the liver; some say, also small fish; moreover, small fish keep the whole human body in a fit condition. According to the Geonim, the sisin referred to here is Matricaria chamomilla of the composite family Asteraceae

References | 

Medical Herbalism, David Hoffmann 

Herbal Therapy and Supplementsby Merrily A. Kuhn and David Winston

The Earthwise Herbal by Matthew Wood 

Talmud, Avodah Zarah 29 a-b

White Rabbit