The essential oil could cause an asthma-like attack if applied to the nasal area of infants or small children
The tea has become a traditional remedy to relieve the discomforts of menstruation, to alleviate respiratory infections, and to promote liver and gallbladder function
While herbalists have used various mint species for thousands of years, the familiar garden perennial peppermint is a relative newcomer. That's because peppermint is a hybrid of spearmint and water mint first cultivated in England around the beginning of the eighteenth century. The plant is now grown throughout Europe and North America, with the Northwest part of the U.S. being a major supplier for the world market. The bulk of the crop is steam-distilled into the pale yellow essential oil, which is widely used as a flavouring agent in foods, candies, chewing gum, and toothpaste's. An estimated one percent of the essential oil is used medicinally, as is a small percentage of the leaf crop for teas and other herbal preparations.
Over the past three centuries herbalists have begun to use peppermint in many of the same ways that herbalists in ancient Egypt and China used other types of mints. That is, as a digestive remedy to treat heartburn, diarrhoea, flatulence, and intestinal cramps. peppermint leaf tea has become a popular treatment for nausea and vomiting due to morning sickness. The tea has also become a traditional remedy to relieve the discomforts of menstruation, to alleviate respiratory infections, and to promote liver and gallbladder function.
peppermint is now widely recognised as an effective remedy to regulate digestion. It has a calming effect on the smooth muscle of the digestive tract and can promote the flow of bile from the gallbladder into the small intestine, thus aiding the digestion of fats. peppermint may help to relieve symptoms of nasal congestion. The essential oil can be diffused into the air and inhaled for its mildly stimulating effect on the nervous system and overall circulation. Modern aromatherapists say that peppermint-oil clears the mind, helps to increase alertness, and can improve the performance of stressful visual tasks. Herbal companies add peppermint compounds to topical creams that can help relieve the pain and itching of haemorrhoids, insect bites, athlete's foot, and other skin ailments. peppermint is a component of rubs used to relieve minor aches in muscles, nerves, and joints. Some people use the oil as an insect repellent and toothache remedy. peppermint preparations can also help to prevent or treat:
Do scientists know how it works
The main therapeutic components of the plant are various flavonoids and the essential oil. Approximately fifty percent of the essential oil is menthol, a medicinally active alcohol. Applied to the skin, menthol dilates blood vessels and thus has a cooling effect. (Menthol has a similar cooling effect when it is taken into the mouth with air.) Studies have found that menthol has anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory actions.
Types of products
peppermint is available as a tea, the dried leaf, an essential oil, and an herbal oil. It is also sold in liquid extracts and softgels. Some products combine it with ginger. peppermint is widely used:
peppermint tea is generally safe and non-toxic, although it may cause intestinal discomfort in people who have gallstones. Infants and small children should not be given high doses. The essential oil is much more potent and needs to be used with caution. It may irritate the skin if it is applied undiluted or in high doses. Avoid putting the essential oil over more than a small patch of skin at a time because of menthol's pronounced cooling effect. The essential oil could cause an asthma-like attack if applied to the nasal area of infants or small children. Essential oils are not generally taken internally except with the supervision of an experienced therapist. Capsules containing tiny amounts of peppermint-oil are often enteric-coated to prevent a burning sensation or other types of digestive discomfort.
|pROFESSIONAL USES||DOMESTIC USES|
|peppermint is used in the same manner as in the home and there are no additional professional uses.||The flower remedy is used to promote alertness and clarity. Fresh peppermint may be sniffed to achieve the same effect. Rats dislike the smell of peppermint,|
Spasm and colic pains: diverticulitis, colitis and irritable bowel syndrome. Indigestion, flatulence and wind. Travel sickness, nausea, pain from gallbladder disease. Headaches from indigestion. Insomnia and period pains. peppermint can even be used as a mouthwash to freshen breath. Truly a very flexible herb.
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