World Spices & Herbs
is derived from the species of plants which grow in the Cape region of South Africa. The , or the oils released by their leaves, are traditionally used for a broad spectrum of medicinal purposes. Research is limited on the significance of health effects, but it is most notable for its treatment of kidney and urinary tract infections because of its antimicrobial activity. is used to make herbal teas, tonics, and over-the-counter diuretics. It is also speculated to have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, and digestive effects.
is mainly used by South Africans but is sold commercially in the United States. The leaves can be used to make tea or brewed in brandy; and are commonly used to make oils. The plants produce different scented oils that resemble peppermint and range from sweet to sharper smells. Its strong scent and taste are used to boost fruity flavors, but the most impacted is the flavor of black currant. The oil can also be used as an insect repellant, deodorant, or moisturizer.
Chamomile is an herb that is prepared from the dried flowers of the plant. These dried flowers contain terpenoids and flavonoids contributing to its medicinal properties. Chamomile preparations are commonly used for a variety of human ailments such as hay fever, inflammation, muscle spasms, ulcers, gastrointestinal issues, rheumatic pain, and hemorrhoids. It is also used to manage anxiety and insomnia, due to its calming effect. This makes its dried leaves a perfect brewing agent for nighttime teas. Chamomile flowers also produce an iconic blue oil that is used extensively in cosmetics and aromatherapy. Its scent is mild with hints of apples and can be described as sweet and smoky. Essential oils of chamomile are used topically to treat wounds and also can be mixed into perfumes, cosmetic creams, hair products, lotions, toothpaste, and even in liquors.
Due to its wide range of healing properties, chamomile has been used in herbal remedies in Egypt, Greece, and Rome for thousands of years, and it was even believed by the Anglo-Saxons to have been one of nine herbs given to humans by the lord. The chamomile plant is grown mostly in Egypt and southern and eastern European countries, but also in India, Asia, North and South America, Australia, and New Zealand.