Remember that recent round-up of three great reasons to love chamomile tea in this post, which included easing menstrual cramps, helping you sleep and boosting mood? Well, researchers must really enjoy doing studies on chamomile because they’ve just discovered another benefit of this popular herb you’re going to love: Chamomile eases premenstrual discomfort–like back pain, pre-period cramps and overall achiness–as effectively as taking an over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), such as Advil or Motrin.
The proof: In a new study in the journal Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 90 college-aged women with PMS who took 100 mg. of chamomile in a supplement three times daily on the days leading up to their period experienced just as much pain relief as those who were given 250 mg. of the NSAID mefenamic acid thrice daily.
How’s it work? The researchers suggest there’s a link between chamomile’s mood-boosting effect and its pain-reducing ability. In this same study, the women who took chamomile supplements experienced a significant reduction in the intensity of negative emotions. And research shows that the more positive you feel emotionally, the better you feel physically.
To try it yourself, either take 100 mg. of chamomile in a supplement up to three times daily during your premenstrual week or sip one to three cups of chamomile tea on these days.
Tip: To brew chamomile tea, steep one teabag or one tablespoon of dried chamomile in a covered cup for 10 minutes in boiled water that has been allowed to cool for one minute.
Note: Avoid chamomile if you have ragweed allergies or are taking blood thinners. Visit Drugs.com for more drug interaction information.