Chamomile is mainly used in herbal medicine against digestive disorders, sleep disorders, as well as against anxiety. But it can do much more, chamomile tea also acts in the prevention of several diseases, such as thyroid cancer.
In a small Greek study published in the specialist journal European Journal of Public Health, regular consumption of chamomile tea was correlated with a reduced risk of thyroid cancer. The researchers are currently unable to explain the cause and effect link, but they have in any case observed a correlation. In other words, people who consumed chamomile tea over a long period of time had a lower risk of suffering from this form of cancer.
Chamomile tea: a lower risk of thyroid cancer
Chamomile, associated with the Mediterranean diet, could be the cause of this reduction in the risk of cancer. According to this study, the consumption of sage tea also led to a decrease in the risk of cancer, but not as much as chamomile tea. In Greece, approximately 1.6 people per 100,000 inhabitants are diagnosed with thyroid cancer each year, compared to 13.2 people in the United States and 5.2 people in Europe per 100,000 inhabitants.
Apigenin an antioxidant and anticancer molecule
Flavonoids, found in chamomile tea, could be the source of this protective effect against cancer. A previous study on chamomile, conducted by American researchers from the Ohio State University (Ohio State University) and published in the specialized journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences had shown an anticancer action of a substance contained in chamomile, apigenin.
This molecule, sometimes called apigenol, belongs to flavones, a subclass of flavonoids.
Chamomile tea: make the most of its effects
To enhance the effects of chamomile, it is possible to triple the dose, this will include using 3 sachets instead of 1 alone. It is also advisable to put a small plate or a lid on the cup directly after the start of the infusion, in order to prevent the active ingredients from evaporating.
Riza E: The effect of Greek herbal tea consumption on thyroid cancer: a case-control study. Eur J Public Health. doi: 10.1093/eurpub/ckv063.
Arango D: Molecular basis for the action of a dietary flavonoid revealed by the comprehensive identification of apigenin human targets.Proc Natl Acad Sci USA doi: 10.1073/pnas.1303726110
Nabavi SM: Apigenin and Breast Cancers: From Chemistry to Medicine. Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 15(6):728-35.