Stress and anxiety are a part of life and something that we all experience from time to time. For some people however levels of stress can be very high and initiated by many different sources often preventing them from enjoying many activities or even coping with daily tasks in everyday life.
A flavonoid in Chamomile, called Apigenin, may be responsible for the anti-anxiety and calming effects. Its action on brain receptors is similar to Vallium and Xanax, but unlike the drugs, chamomile’s not addictive or harmful. Chamomile has also been found to increase glycine in the body, which is an amino acid that acts as a nerve and muscle relaxant. This herb really triggers sleepiness, promotes better sleep for a long period and is known to relax smooth muscle tissue. In this way, it is useful in such things as calming a nervous stomach and relieving menstrual cramps.
Chamomile is often used to to alleviate stress, calm racing brains, tense nerves and promote relaxation and restful sleep. It can also help with nervous headaches and irritable bowel syndrome.
Chamomile is used both internally and externally. As capsules or a tincture. Most often it is probably used as a simple tea. You can also use infusions of the dried herb in the bath or even a foot soak.
Personally I prefer the Steam Inhalation method, I find it just as effective as drinking the tea.
1. Put the herbs together in a medium-sized bowl.
2. Bring water to a boil; pour the steaming water over the herbs.
3. Cover your head with a large towel to capture the steam. With eyes closed, gently lean into the bowl and slowly inhale the herbal steam through the nose.
4. Continue to inhale and exhale the herbal steam for ten minutes, even better if you can do it for long!
Chamomile smoothies can be a more powerful relaxant and anti-anxiety aid, because you’re actually consuming the entire flower. If you can get your hands on fresh Chamomile flowers, they’re excellent in Chamomile smoothies. A few minutes after consuming one, you can literally feel your stress and tension melt away. For those really tough times, you can drink one every few hours.
To make a Chamomile smoothie, just use 8 to 10 fresh or dried flowers and add them to any fruit smoothie. Or blend: 3 bananas, 8 – 10 fresh or dried flowers, 1/2 cup of water, and add some syrup for sweetness.
Great times to have one :
If your children are having a fit or are prone to them, you might want to introduce Chamomile smoothies.
If you have an aggressive spouse or family member, perhaps you want to serve them regularly.
If you’re over-worked and just can’t seem to relax.
If you’re feeling anxious, fearful, nervous or just irritable.
Note: Chamomile should not be used during pregnancy.
Caution: Chamomile is a member of the daisy family of plants, which includes ragweed. Those with allergies to ragweed should avoid the use of chamomile.
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