College of DuPage Nursing Student Justin Feliciano shared with Healthy Lombard that many people may not be aware of the fact that peppermint is an all-purpose ingredient used in many household items such as teas, coffees, essential oils, and even candy. Not only does it have a minty refreshing taste, it also has medical properties that we can all benefit from.
Peppermint is known to help with digestive properties to ease stomach upset. According to Dresden (2020), peppermint leaf and peppermint oil have a long history of use for digestive disorders and enteric-coated peppermint oil has recently been found to relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. Those who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome may struggle to relieve symptoms and peppermint is easily accessible and aids with this problem.
Peppermint can also help to relieve gas, bloating, and menstrual cramps. In a double-blind study performed by Masoumi and colleagues (2016), 127 students who had experienced primary dysmenorrhea took a drug including mefenamic acid and mint and found that while the heaviness of the menstrual flow was not reduced, the pain and severity of symptoms decreased after taking peppermint. Women who suffer from menstrual cramps may have gastrointestinal problems although, with peppermint as a home remedy, they are able to promote their overall health.
This essential herb not only helps in the lower gastrointestinal (GI) tract but also benefits the health of the mouth for many who suffer from plaque and gum disease. Oral hygiene is vital to the maintenance of health, for persons of all ages. Oral disease not only impairs nutrition but may also affect cardiac health. An easy way to combat oral bacteria is to mix tea tree oil, lemon, and peppermint and then gargle this solution (Fletcher, 2019). This combination reduces the odor caused by bacteria but may also decrease the occurrence of cavities. Toothpaste is one common item we see containing these ingredients to counteract these symptoms. With the help of peppermint, we can all have minty-fresh breath.
Life comes at us fast and we are always busy which tends to lead to stress and headaches. Tension headaches, the most frequent form of headaches, may be relieved from peppermint oil. Peppermint oil was found to be beneficial when compared to a placebo, in relieving headaches in controlled studies (Göbel et al., 2016). Headaches plague even the best of us, and rather than taking medications like acetaminophen or ibuprofen which may affect the liver or kidneys over time, an all-natural source of relief like peppermint oil may be a superior choice.
Committee, H., Göbel, H., H. Göbel, M., A. Heinze, K., H. Göbel, A., B. Kroner-Herwig, M., J.M. Major, E. (1970, January 01). Oleum menthae Piperitae (Pfefferminzöl) in Der Akuttherapie Des kopfschmerzes Vom spannungstyp. Retrieved March 19, 2021, from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00482-016-0109-6#cite
Dresden, D. (2020, September 10). Peppermint oil benefits: Properties and uses. Retrieved March 21, 2021, from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/peppermint-oil-benefits#_noHeaderPrefixedContent
Fletcher, J. (n.d.). Peppermint tea: Health benefits, how much to drink, and side effects. Retrieved March 19, 2021, from, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325242#tension-headaches
Groves, M. (2018, October 12). Healthline. Retrieved March 21, 2021, from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/peppermint-tea