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January 19, 2005

Claims That Chamomile Tea Is Effective Treatment For Common Cold Not Supported By Research

Many news articles are reporting a bogus, far reaching conclusion that chamomile tea can fight the common cold and get rid of menstrual cramps. Do an Internet search for 'chamomile tea' and you will find the articles.

However, the study they quote in fact did not study the effects of chamomile tea on colds or on menstrual cramps.

The conclusions of cold fighting and cramp dissolving properties are loose undisciplined extrapolations at best.

The study, published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry was funded by Oxford Natural Health Products plc, a company that develops and sells natural food products, pharmaceuticals, and nutraceuticals through partnerships and licensing agreements with other companies.

The study followed only 14 subjects for 6 weeks who consumed chamomile tea. Urine tests were taken from the subjects to measure the presence of hippurate which may apparently act as an anti inflammatory, and glycine which may apparently help reduce muscle spasms.

It is critical to understand that none of the test subjects had muscle spasms or menstrual cramps, colds, or inflammation of any kind that were treated experimentally with the ingestion of chamomile tea.

The title of the study is, "A Metabonomic Strategy for the Detection of the Metabolic Effects of Chamomile (Matricaria recutita L.) Ingestion".

Note that there is no indication whatsoever that this study was meant to determine the effect if any on the result of using chamomile tea for the treatment of the common cold or menstrual cramps.

In the abstract of the study the words, "cold" and "menstrual" do not appear.

So why all the press on a supposed "study" that confirms chamomile tea as a cold remedy?

Well, I doubt that such conclusions were made serendipitously since the conclusions are so far reaching if not totally contrived. It seems these conclusions would be very helpful to those selling chamomile tea products or extracts of chamomile.

I would gladly accept chamomile tea as a cold treatment if significant research proved it effective. That hasn't happened yet.

- Cris LaBossiere

Go here for an article on how home remedies for the common cold don't work

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2004 - 2005 Cris LaBossiere Rhino Fitness www.rhinofitness.ca



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