Peppermint leaves have been used for centuries in traditional medicine for their many health benefits. From aiding digestion to relieving pain and clearing sinuses, peppermint has a wide range of therapeutic actions. In this article, we will explore the various actions of peppermint in traditional medicine and how it can be used to treat different conditions. We will also provide tips on how to use peppermint for maximum benefit, including supplements, tea, and essential oil. So, let’s dive into the world of peppermint and discover its many wonders.
Peppermint Leaves: A Digestive Superstar
peppermint leaves have been known for their carminative properties for centuries. They stimulate the flow of gastric juices and bile, which promotes digestion and helps to relieve bloating and flatulence. In addition to this, the relaxing effects of peppermint on muscles and digestion can help to relieve cramping and discomfort in the gastrointestinal tract. This makes peppermint an excellent natural remedy for digestive issues.
Peppermint has been found to be beneficial in treating bowel conditions such as ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). IBS is a common gastrointestinal disorder that causes abdominal pain or discomfort along with changes in bowel patterns. Peppermint oil, which contains the active ingredient Menthol, has been shown to inhibit the contraction of smooth muscles in the gastrointestinal tract, improving symptoms of IBS. It can be taken internally in the form of capsules or oil for maximum benefit.(1)
Actions of Peppermint in Traditional Medicine
Peppermint is known for its many actions in traditional medicine, which include:
- Carminative (relieving flatulence) and stimulates the flow of bile and digestive juices
- Antispasmodic (soothing)
- Diaphoretic (helps to reduce fever, cool the body, and speed the elimination of toxins)
- Antiemetic (effective against vomiting and nausea)
- Nervine (calming the nerves)
- Analgesic (acting to relieve pain)
Peppermint for Fever, Colds, and Influenza
Peppermint is a traditional treatment for fever, colds, and influenza. Prepare tea by pouring a cup of boiling water over a heaping teaspoon of dried leaves or a handful of fresh leaves, cover and infuse for 10 minutes before drinking.
Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint essential oil is an excellent remedy for muscular pain and headaches! When applied to the skin, the essential oil has a cooling and refreshing effect at the beginning and then a gentle warming effect. Dilute 1-2 drops of peppermint to 1 tbsp base oil and massage the affected area. It is also great to clear sinuses and congested lungs. Diffuse 3-4 drops in a diffuser or an oil burner. *Not suitable for children under 7 years old.
In conclusion, peppermint is a versatile herb with a wide range of therapeutic actions that have been utilized in traditional medicine for centuries. From aiding digestion to relieving pain and clearing sinuses, peppermint has something to offer for everyone. Whether you prefer supplements, tea, or essential oil, there are many ways to incorporate peppermint into your wellness routine. However, it is important to note that peppermint oil should not be used for children under 7 years old. With its many benefits and uses, it’s no wonder that peppermint continues to be a popular natural remedy today. So, start exploring the world of peppermint and discover its many wonders for yourself!
- Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine: Principles and Practices / by David Hoffmann
- Neal’s Yard Remedies Essential Oils