Matricaria recutita, “Chamomile” or “German chamomile” in English and “Camomille sauvage”, “Matricaire camomille” or “Petite camomille” in French, belongs to the Asteraceae botanical family. Native from Europe to West Asia and the Himalayas, it is a herb growing to 0.5 m along paths, in waste or arable grounds, in saline steppes or sandy soils.
Its essential oil is used commercially in the food, perfume and cosmetics industry.
It has been used as a herbal remedy for thousands of years, mostly for gastrointestinal and menstrual problems, also insomnia; externally, for inflammation and catarrh of the nose, throat and bronchi, and for certain skin problems.
The main constituents of its essential oil (0.3 – 1.5 %) include the terpenoids α-bisabolol and its oxides (≤ 78 %) and azulenes, including chamazulene (1-15 %); chamaviolin, spathulenol and the cis- and trans-enyne dicyclo ethers; flavonoids, sesquiterpene lactones, coumarins etc.