What is chamomile?

What is chamomile ()? The use of chamomile in cultural and traditional settings may differ from concepts accepted by current Western medicine. When considering the use of herbal supplements, consultation with a primary health care professional is advisable. Additionally, consultation with a practitioner trained in the uses of herbal/health supplements may be beneficial, and coordination of treatment among all health care providers involved may be advantageous.Two plants each provide the product known as chamomile. Matricaria chamomilla is also known as German chamomile, Hungarian chamomile, pin heads, chamomilla, wild chamomile, sweet false chamomile, and genuine chamomile. Anthemis nobilis is also known as English or Roman chamomile, ground apple, whig plant, and common chamomile.Chamomile has been used orally to reduce flatulence and/or diarrhea due to a nervous stomach, to reduce stomach upset, to treat travel sickness, to produce mild sedation, to reduce restlessness and irritability, to treat the common cold, to treat fevers, to reduce cough, for liver and gallbladder complaints, and to increase appetite. Chamomile has also been used topically to reduce inflammation of the skin, mouth, and throat; to reduce nasal inflammation and discharge; and to treat wounds and burns.Chamomile has not been evaluated by the FDA for safety, effectiveness, or purity. All potential risks and/or advantages of chamomile may not be known. Additionally, there are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for these compounds. There have been instances where herbal/health supplements have been sold which were contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.Chamomile may also have uses other than those listed in this product guide.

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