Chamomile tea has been around for many centuries – it’s in fact one of the oldest, most widely-used medicinal plants around the globe. People from many different cultures recommend chamomile for numerous afflictions.
For this study, the researchers wanted to find out if chamomile tea could prolong the lives of both women and men. They tracked 1,677 Mexican-American women and men for a period of seven years, observing the effects of chamomile tea on death. The researchers used data from the Hispanic Established Populations for Epidemiologic Study of the Elderly, a study that looked at Mexican-Americans aged 65 and older from five southwestern states.
What the researchers is that of all people in the study, 14% drank chamomile tea on a regular basis. They also found that women who were regular chamomile tea drinkers had a 29% reduced risk of early death from all causes. Even after researchers adjusted their findings for health conditions and demographics, results stayed the same. However, they found that the same results weren’t present in men.
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Researchers are unsure why only women reap live-longer benefits from chamomile tea
According to Dr Bret Howrey , an assistant professor at the University of Texas Medical Branch, the reason for a difference in the findings between Hispanic women and men isn’t clear. However, he suggested that it may be because women showed to be more frequent consumers of chamomile tea than men.
Dr Howrey also suggested that the difference may be due to traditional gender roles whereby women manage household activities like family, and therefore may also reflect more reliance on folk remedies like herbs such as chamomile.
One thing that the research team is still unclear on, however, is what gives chamomile tea its longevity properties. Chamomile tea has been touted in the past for its antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anti-platelet and cholesterol
-lowering effects, but never for its ability to low death rates up until now.
Dr Howrey says that more research is necessary to properly understand the link between drinking chamomile tea and long life for women.