Chamomile Monograph

Scientific name of Chamomile:
Matricaria recutita

Action of Chamomile:
Non-drowsy, non-addictive natural sedative

Chamomile is used for these common wellness concerns:
Tension and nervous agitation caused by occasional anxiety and related overactive behavior; occasional sleep difficulty caused by restlessness and nervousness; gastrointestinal disturbances

Find Chamomile in these Clarocet blends:

Clarocet NRI® Immediate Response Capsules™
promote fast-acting relaxation when you need it most.

Clarocet ERT® Extended Release Tablets™
promote positive mood balance all day strong.

Clarocet CS® Controlled Release Tablets™
promote long-lasting energy and mental sharpness.

Clarocet PM® Rapid Release Capsules™
promote a deep, restful night's sleep.

Clarocet Junior® Easy-to-Swallow Tablets™
support Emotional Wellness in kids ages 7 thru 13.

An Overview of Chamomile

German Chamomile flowers are daisy-like, apple-scented flowers that have been used historically to promote relaxation in babies, children and adults. Today, Chamomile is still considered to be one of the safest medicinal herbs, providing positive support for:

  • Tension and nervous agitation caused by occasional anxiety and related overactive behavior
  • Occasional sleep difficulty caused by restlessness and nervousness
  • Gastrointestinal disturbances

In the United States, Chamomile is classified as GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) by the Food and Drug Administration. Substances that receive a GRAS classification have maintained a long, safe history of common use in foods or have been determined to be safe based on proven scientific research.

Science and Pharmacology of Chamomile

Researchers have identified several flavonoids, or bioactive components, contained in the volatile oils of German Chamomile flowers, which are believed to exhibit a sedative effect in the central nervous system. These compounds include:

  • Apigenin
  • Chrysoplenin
  • Jaceidin

Apigenin has demonstrated sedative effects in clinical study, which may explain the calming benefits noted by researchers. Although the precise mechanism of action is not clearly understood, it is thought that the combination of flavonoids in German Chamomile contributes to its effectiveness as an anxiolytic. An anxiolytic agent is one that promotes relaxation, soothes tension and relieves occasional anxiety and panic caused by emotional stress.

Chamomile Safety and Usage

Chamomile maintains an excellent safety profile when it is used as directed. In the United States, Chamomile is classified as GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) by the Food and Drug Administration. Substances that receive a GRAS classification have maintained a long, safe history of common use in foods or have been determined to be safe based on proven scientific research.

n adults, a dose of 75 to 300 milligrams is recommended for the relief of occasional nervousness, nervous tension or anxiety. In children between the ages of seven and 13, a dose of 25 to 100 milligrams is recommended to promote gentle relaxation and to ease tension and nervous agitation caused by occasional anxiety and related overactive behavior.

What are the potential side effects of Chamomile?

Side effects are rare and have been documented as mild to moderate in clinical study. They may include allergic reaction, headache or drowsiness. In the event that you or your child experiences an adverse reaction, discontinue use of this herb. Chamomile does not cause withdrawal or discontinuation effects.

Is Chamomile safe for children?

Chamomile is generally well tolerated when used by children between the ages of seven and 13. Because each child is unique, Chamomile should be administered under the supervision of a professional healthcare provider.

Does Chamomile adversely interact with prescription drugs?

Taking Chamomile in combination with prescription medications such as benzodiazepines, SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) or SNRIs (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors) may cause drowsiness. If you or your child is taking a prescription medication, it is recommended that you consult with your prescribing doctor before making any changes or additions to a current treatment plan.

What precautions should I take before beginning Chamomile?

Consult with your healthcare provider before beginning a wellness plan that includes dietary supplements like Chamomile.

  • Do not take Chamomile if you are pregnant or nursing
  • Do not take Chamomile if you are currently taking a prescription MAOI
  • Do not take Chamomile if you are currently taking a protease inhibitor for HIV/AIDS
  • Do not operate vehicles or heavy machinery until you know how Chamomile affects you

Chamomile Clinical Studies

1. Healing With Plants in the American and Mexican West
Margarita Artschwager Kay
University of Arizona Press (August 1, 1996) ISBN: 0816516464

2. Evaluation of the activity on the mouse CNS of several plant extracts and a combination of them
Della Loggia R, Tubaro A, Redaelli C.
Riv Neurol. 1981 Sep-Oct;51(5):297-310. PMID: 6118937 [Read the Abstract]

3. Medicinal Herbal Therapy: A Pharmacist's Viewpoint
Ottariano S.
Portsmouth, New Hampshire: Nicolin Fields; 1999

4. Flavonoids and the central nervous system: from forgotten factors to potent anxiolytic compounds.
Paladini AC, Marder M, Viola H, Wolfman C, Wasowski C, Medina JH.
Instituto de Quimica y Fisicoquimica Biologicas, Facultad de Farmacia y Bioquimica, Argentina.
Pharm Pharmacol. 1999 May;51(5):519-26. PMID: 10411210 [Read the Abstract]

5. Chamomile - Matricaria Recutita
Hoffman D.
Materia Medica 2004 [Read the Abstract]

6. Food for Human Consumption - Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS)
US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Title 21 - Food and Drugs; Subchapter B; Part 182 [Read the Full Text]

Related online research destinations

Last Updated: February 2015 [PHMF-03-0]