Roman or German Chamomile

Posted by on Feb 18, 2013 in Aromatherapy Tips | Comments Off

German Chamomile (Matricaria recuitita) is distilled in places from S Africa, Nepal, Egypt, Chile, Germany, Hungary, and Slovenia.  A great deal of research has gone into the selection and breeding of Chamomile plants with a high content of (-)alpha bisabolol, the main anti-inflammative component of this essential oil.  It’s very gentle quality makes it a soothing, healing addition to face and body oils.  It’s also very effective for healing burns and for use during acute stages of infection.  A drop added to chamomile tea can soothe gastric pain.

A notable difference between German and Roman Chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile) is the deep blue color of the German variety.  This blue component is known as chamazulene.  It’s also found in the essential oils of other plants such as blue tansy, yarrow, and some varieties of helichrysum.  Chamazulene is an “artifact” that occurs during the distillation process.  It contains anti-allergy and anti-inflammatory properties.  Because of its therapeutic qualities, some unethical distillers who consider “more is better,” add synthetic chamazulene to a less expensive Moroccan Chamomile, and sell it as its more costly counterpart.  Moroccan chamomile (Ormenis mixta) has its own therapeutic qualities, namely for use in skin care.

Roman Chamomile helps to calm, and relieve tension.  Since there is more nervous tissue in our gut than in our brain, topical application on the belly, or even a drop in a cup of warm water can help soothe symptoms related to stress and digestive disorders.