Jasmine flowers have long been used to flavor teas, and jasmine tea is a popular beverage often served in Chinese restaurants. Used to flavor green tea or used alone to make a herbal tea, jasmine flowers are reputed to have many medicinal uses. Many people find that jasmine tea does have a soothing effect on the stomach. However, there is not enough evidence to support its claims to treat stomach pains or other conditions.
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Jasmine is a flowering shrub with yellow or white flowers and a delightful fragrance that becomes stronger at night. Originally a sub-tropical plant, it will grow well in most climates, particularly if placed in an area that gets plenty of sun and good air circulation.
The flowers are harvested during the day and should be stored in a cool place until evening. They can be layered with tea leaves to impart taste and fragrance, or dried on their own for use in tea or making essential oils. The flowers can also be used fresh in teas.
Jasmine flowers contain etheric oil, linalcohol, benzile alcohol, benzilice acetate, indole and jasmon. These substances are all believed to have aphrodisiac properties. They are also believed to ease digestion, accelerate the metabolism and improve blood circulation, according to Live and Feel. Other ingredients include ceosel, eugenol, famesol, nerol, gamma terpineol and others, according to Organic Facts. Eugenol, found primarily in cloves, has been found to have pain-relieving qualities and has long been used in dentistry as a local anesthetic and analgesic, says Medline Plus.
A study reported in the December 2005 issue of the journal Fundamentals of Clinical Pharmacology reported that jasmine may have some cancer preventive qualities. The article also stated that further study is required before definitive claims can be made.
Tea and Stomach Pains
According to Natural-HomeRemedies, jasmine tea is good for the gastrointestinal system. It is reputed to prevent gastric ulcers, a common source of stomach pains, aid in digestion, and may promote the production of probiotic stomach bacteria. It is also believed to kill bad stomach bacteria.
As an anti-spasmodic, jasmine may prevent and relieve stomach cramps. Organic Facts also states that jasmine's sedative effects can relieve anxiety, depression, stress and anger, all factors in stomach pain in some people.
While jasmine tea in small amounts can have a soothing effect on the stomach, large quantities can cause acid development that may lead to stomach pain and reflux, according to Live and Feel. As with any alternative treatment, jasmine tea should not be substituted for proper medical treatment.
Because jasmine has the ability to affect menstrual periods and menopause, Organic Facts states that it may have adverse effects on pregnant women. The oil should not be used during pregnancy, and the tea should be used only in small, infrequent amounts.
In addition to tea, the flowers can be distilled into an essential oil reputed to have to pain-relieving, antiseptic and sedative properties. Small amounts of the oil used in an aromatherapy diffuser can be used to relieve pain, according to Live and Feel. However, there is little empirical evidence that aromatherapy works as an analgesic.