Peppermint as a herb is well-known and grows naturally throughout North America and Europe. It’s a cross between watermint and spearmint and it’s commonly grown in gardens. Both leaves and the essential oil from the peppermint are used for health purposes.
Peppermint is famous for it’s fresh and minty fragrance. It’s often used to give flavor to foods and aroma to personal care products and cosmetics.
Tip! If you grow peppermint in your garden, always collect it in the morning because the afternoon sun reduces the essential oil content in the leaves.
Peppermint has a long history. It traces back to Ancient Egyptian times where it was used as a remedy for indigestion.
The Greeks and Romans also used it as a stomach soother. A few centuries ago it became a popular treatment in Western Europe for vomiting, nausea, morning sickness, respiratory infections, and menstrual disorders. Modern-day science confirms they were right in many things.
Relieve respiratory infections
Peppermint oil is known to act as expectorant and decongestant. Since it contains a high concentration of menthol it’s been long used to treat asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, and coughs.
Peppermint soothes the throat and helps to break down mucus. It’s often used in chest rubs to treat cough and other respiratory symptoms.
Breathing in menthol vapors can also help to reduce the inflammation of nasal passageways and offer immediate relief.
- Add 6-8 drops of peppermint oil for a cup of hot water
- Lean over the cup and breathe in the steam.
- For stronger effect cover your head with a towel.
To relieve cold symptoms, drinking hot peppermint tea made from a couple of fresh peppermint leaves is a great remedy as well. It helps to stimulate the immune system and reduce congestion.
Tip! To make your tea sweeter, add a bit of honey in it. However, be sure to wait for the tea to cool a bit since honey will lose its valuable nutrients, enzymes, and vitamins if added to hot water.
Natural remedy for headache
Due to peppermint oil containing menthol, it’s one of the most commonly used essential oils to fight headaches. A study conducted in Germany showed that peppermint oil can be as effective for relieving tension and migraine headaches as taking 1,000 mg of acetaminophen (paracetamol).
It’s not recommended to apply undiluted peppermint oil to the skin. Instead, do the following:
- Dilute a few drops of pure peppermint oil with a teaspoon of carrier oil (for example with coconut oil or sweet almond oil).
- Massage the mixture gently on your temples, forehead, and the back of your neck. Avoid contact with the eyes!
Tip! Since peppermint oil has analgesic and anti-spasmodic properties, it can also calm spasms that cause muscle cramps. Add a few drops of peppermint oil to your bath water and enjoy the sensation of relaxation.
How to use peppermint oil for digestive problems
Digestive concerns, such as bloating, gas and indigestion may be relieved with peppermint oil.
Help for constipation and irritable bowel syndrome
Since peppermint oil can relax muscles in the digestive tract it may help you with constipation.
For help with constipation:
- Mix 2-3 drops of peppermint oil with a teaspoon of warmed carrier oil (like coconut oil for example)
- Massage gently on the abdomen. Do this 2-3 times per day.
Many studies confirm that peppermint oil is a good natural remedy for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Peppermint oil soothes inflammatory pain in the gastrointestinal tract and studies show that enteric-coated peppermint oil works the best.
However, simply adding drinking peppermint tea to your daily regime could also help. Research shows that drinking peppermint tea can indeed reduce bowel spasms.
PS! Taking peppermint supplements by mouth is not recommended for people with gastroesophageal reflux disease, gallbladder problems, and hiatal hernias. Always consult your doctor before taking any supplements by mouth!
How to use peppermint oil boost energy, improve alertness and memory
Instead of consuming a lot of energy drinks that usually have a lot of chemicals in them, try out peppermint oil. Studies show that simply inhaling peppermint oil can improve memory and alertness.
- Put a few drops of peppermint oil to a diffuser in times you need to concentrate and stay alert.
- Add a few drops of lemon oil if you’d like to add a citrusy nuance.
Peppermint oil contains a high concentration of menthol which creates a sensation of coolness and freshness by stimulating your body’s cold receptors.
Since peppermint oil eases breathing, a greater amount of oxygen will reach your blood circulation and brain which reduces fatigue and results in an energy boost and memory improvement.
How to use peppermint oil to deter spiders
Spiders do not like the smell of peppermint oil. A good natural way to get rid of spiders in your home is to apply peppermint oil to places you commonly see them.
The recipe is simple:
- Find a small spray bottle
- Add two teaspoons of peppermint oil for every half a cup of water
- Spray to corners and around places you have noticed traces of those unwanted guests.
It’s a good natural way to get rid of spiders without killing them.
Peppermint is an herb that has been cherished since ancient times. It can be one of the most beneficial oils you can have in your home. Whether you have digestive problems or just feeling you need that kick of freshness, give peppermint oil a try!
Pro tip! Ants hate peppermint oil. Those unwanted creatures will perish from areas you have applied peppermint oil to ????
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