Tuesday, 12 February 2019

Herbal chamomile in the Prevention and Treatment of Anxiety Disorders

By Kyle J. Norton

Herbal Chamomile may have a potential effect in reducing risk and treatment of anxiety disorder, according to studies.

Anxiety disorders are a group of mental illnesses characterized by symptoms of excessive anxiety, fear, worry, avoidance, and compulsive rituals. The condition is more commonly in women than in men.

Some researchers suggested that anxiety disorders are conditions associated with the combination of biological, psychological, and individual factors and the most commonly reported psychiatric conditions and frequently occur as comorbid disorders.

According to the statistic, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the age of 18 and older, or 18.1% of the population every year.

The exact causes of anxiety disorders are debatable. However, a family history of anxiety recent or prolonged exposure to stress, excessive consumption of stimulants such as caffeine or tobacco is associated with the onset of the disorders.

The symptoms of anxiety disorders can be psychological or physical, including difficulty concentrating and sleeping,  irritability,  persistent stomachaches or diarrhea,  sweaty palms, shaking and rapid heartbeat.

If you experience some of the above symptoms, please make sure you check with your doctor to rule out the possibility.

Dr. Lykouras L, the lead scientist in the investigation of the connection between body weight and anxiety disorders wrote, "Obesity has been associated with anxiety disorders as follows: most of the studies show a positive relationship with panic disorder, mainly in women, with specific phobia and social phobia" and "Some authors have found a relationship with generalized anxiety disorder but a negative relationship has been also reported".

The results clearly indicated if you are obese, your risk of anxiety disorders is increased substantially compared to normal weight people.

Chamomile is also known as camomile, the common name of many species daisy-like plants in the family Asteraceae. The herb has been used in traditional medicine as antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory constituents and for the treatment of menstrual cramps and sleep disorders, reduce cramping and spastic pain in the bowels, relieve excessive gas and bloating in the intestine, etc.

In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled efficacy and tolerability trial of Matricaria recutita (chamomile) extract on generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) showed to effective of modest anxiolytic activity with patient mild to moderate GAD(1). The University of Ottawa study on the effects of Matricaria recutita (German chamomile) and Humulus lupulus (hops) showed significant activity in the inhibition of GAD  at doses of 0.11-0.65 mg/mL(2).

The study containing 57 participants in the 2009 trial, 19 had anxiety with comorbid depression; 16 had anxiety with a past history of depression, and 22 had anxiety with no current or past depression, chamomile showed a clinically meaningful antidepressant activity to its previously observed anxiolytic activity(3).

 Apigenin, a component of Matricaria recutita flowers, in mice study, exerted its anxiolytic and slight sedative effects through the central benzodiazepine receptors(4).

Researchers at the University Science Center on finding a treatment of anxiety disorder examined the effects of chamomile extract therapy in patients with mild to moderate generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) on a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled efficacy and tolerability trial.

In a total of 63 outpatients with mild to moderate GAD enrolled, 57 were randomized to either double-blind chamomile extract (n = 28) or placebo therapy (n = 29) for 8 weeks.

Chamomile treated group exerted a significantly greater reduction in mean total HAM-A score compared to the placebo.

Furthermore, besides the better primary outcomes, chamomile group also demonstrated a positive change in all secondary outcomes in the reduction of anxiety symptoms.

Mild and tolerated adverse events or more was not significantly different between groups.

The findings clearly suggested herbal chamomile extract processes a modest anxiolytic activity in patients with mild to moderate GAD. 

Moreover, in the evaluation of the chamomile effect on gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) which is a neurotransmitter that blocks impulses between nerve cells in the brain researchers compared the herbal plants which were used in the traditional medicine for the treatment of anxiety disorders.

 Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter has been found to initiate the risk of anxiety or mood disorders in low levels

In vitro rat brain homogenate assays, compared to other herbal plants such as Melissa officinalis, Centella asiatica (Gotu Kola) and Valeriana officinalis (Valerian), chamomile showed significant inhibition of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) activity (0.11-0.65 mg/mL).

These results strongly suggested that the failure of the interaction of members in the GAGA system caused by dysfunction was attributed to the onset of anxiety disorders.

Additionally, in participants with symptoms of comorbid anxiety and depression, according to the generalized estimating equations analysis to identify clinically meaningful changes over time in scores from the Hamilton Depression Rating (HAM-D) questionnaire among treatment groups, Chamomile group displays a significantly greater reduction over time in total HAM-D scores compared to placebo.

Also, the HAM-D core mood item scores, application of chamomile also showed a significantly greater reduction over time vs placebo in all participants, regardless of the current or past depression.

Taken altogether, herbal chamomile may be considered a functional remedy for the prevention of anxiety disorders in higher risk population and combined with primary medicine for the treatment of anxiety diseases with tolerated adverse effects.

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Author Biography
Kyle J. Norton (Scholar, Master of Nutrients, All right reserved)

Health article writer and researcher; Over 10.000 articles and research papers have been written and published online, including worldwide health, ezine articles, article base, health blog, self-growth, best before it's news, the karate GB daily, etc.,.
Named TOP 50 MEDICAL ESSAYS FOR ARTISTS & AUTHORS TO READ by Disilgold.com Named 50 of the best health Tweeters Canada - Huffington Post
Nominated for shorty award over last 4 years
Some articles have been used as references in medical research, such as international journal Pharma and Bioscience, ISSN 0975-6299.

(1) A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of oral Matricaria recutita (chamomile) extract therapy for generalized anxiety disorder by Amsterdam JD1, Li Y, Soeller I, Rockwell K, Mao JJ, Shults J.(PubMed)
(2) Effects of traditionally used anxiolytic botanicals on enzymes of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) system by Awad R1, Levac D, Cybulska P, Merali Z, Trudeau VL, Arnason JT. (PubMed)
(3) Chamomile (Matricaria recutita) may provide antidepressant activity in anxious, depressed humans: an exploratory study by Amsterdam JD1, Shults J, Soeller I, Mao JJ, Rockwell K, Newberg AB. (PubMed)
(4) Anxiety disorders and obesity by Lykouras L1, Michopoulos J. (PubMed)

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