Peppermint oil has many surprising uses both inside and outside of the kitchen. Its most active ingredients include menthol (35 percent to 45 percent) and menthone (10 to 30 percent).
It is a formidable, but safe, natural remedy that may be one of the most versatile essential oils in the world. This article explores its applicability and reveals the power of peppermint.
Aids in good oral health
Peppermint has had a reputation for over 1,000 years for being great at eliminating bad breath. It does this in two ways: it has a strong scent and it kills odor-causing bacteria. It may surprise you to know that peppermint has a variety of oral uses.
For instance, it is actually more effective than the mouthwash chemical chlorhexidine at fighting cavities. Peppermint oil is also great for reducing pain associated with toothaches and infant teething.
Encourages smooth skin
Peppermint oil is a natural topical remedy for eczema and psoriasis. Dabbing some peppermint oil on blemishes can naturally treat acne as well. Its antimicrobial properties kill germs while leaving your skin feeling tingly. It can soothe and calm skin irritation, and it also replenishes dull skin and balances oily skin.
Promotes healthy hair
Peppermint is often used in natural shampoos for a variety of reasons. The most noticeable benefit of peppermint in shampoo is the way it leaves your scalp feeling cool and clean. Peppermint oil can kill bacteria and soothe scalp irritation and inflammation, which helps those with scalp psoriasis or dermatitis.
It is also effective at stimulating hair growth. By adding this oil to your shampoo, you will improve your hair quality by nourishing damaged hair and thickening strands.
Reduces bloating and indigestion
When ingested, peppermint oil can relax the intestines to help reduce bloating. According to health experts, is powerful enough to replace the medicine Buscopan in decreasing spasms in the colon muscles. It also reduces gas and the pain and discomfort associated with indigestion.
Aids in dieting
Peppermint oil can be added to a diffuser or applied to your chest to aid in weight loss. By inhaling it, peppermint oil acts as a dietary supplement to help reduce hunger cravings. Not only does it empower you to not reach for that bag of chips, it will also enable you to feel full faster and for a longer period of time.
Boosts mental stamina
If you have a long day at the office, feel tired, but still need to drive home or to work, take a few whiffs of peppermint oil and you will perk right up. Peppermint oil increases alertness and boosts energy without the caffeine, chemicals and calories in energy drinks. Peppermint oil has also been shown to work in improving stamina in those with chronic fatigue syndrome.
Treats irritable bowel syndrome
IBS is characterized by intense stomach pain and chronic indigestion. Peppermint oil can treat symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome. By smoothing muscles in the GI tract, peppermint oil can alleviate pain and discomfort. When combined with caraway oil, it can also relieve heartburn in IBS patients.
Peppermint oil can relieve stomach pain, headaches and muscular pain by relaxing the area affected by the tension. It also relieves joint pain. Simply add a few drops to your ice bath along with a few drops of lavender oil. When applied topically to the affected area, it can relieve pain associated with myofascial pain syndrome and fibromyalgia.
Instead of purchasing DEET insect repellant, try adding a few drops of peppermint oil to water or apply a few drops spread out across your body to keep those mosquitos at bay. Peppermint oil can also be used to get rid of lice on kids and ticks on dogs. Add a few drops to a rag and add to cupboards and drawers to keep pests away. Peppermint oil is also effective against roaches, spiders, ants and mice.
Treats skin burns
Applying peppermint oil can help soothe pain associated with burnt skin. This works with heat burns as well as sunburns. Just add drops to the affected area if the burn is concentrated in a spot. If you are dealing with a sunburn, then dilute the peppermint oil and spray it all over your body. It helps reduce pain while nourishing dull, dry skin and leaving it shiny.
Eases itches and allergies
Peppermint can also work as a topical agent for itchy skin caused by a myriad of ailments including those associated with allergies, rashes and poison ivy. The combination of peppermint oil and lavender oil is especially effective. Its antimicrobial properties clean the affected area while leaving the skin feeling tingly, instead of itchy.
Peppermint oil is also effective against nasal allergies when inhaled, clearing the nasal passages of any dust, pollen and mucus that might be trapped in there. It can relieve blocked sinuses and the pain associated with it, including headaches. It is also good at relieving sore throats, congestion and asthma.
When your nasal passage is blocked at night, or you have a chest cold, rub some peppermint oil on your chest to breathe more easily and soothe your throat and chest.
Inhaling peppermint oil can ease nausea and motion sickness. According to many natural health practitioners, peppermint oil has been shown to be more effective at easing nausea associated with chemotherapy than standard medicine. You can also ease nausea by inhaling the steam of hot peppermint oil in water, adding a few drops of oil behind your ear or by simply diffusing the oil.
Not only does peppermint oil help with nausea, it also fights fevers. It can bring down your temperature and help to ease sore muscles as well as skin pain and heat. Rub coconut oil and peppermint oil on your feet and neck to reduce your fever. Rub the mixture on painful, warm skin and muscles for a cooling effect. It’s antibacterial properties make this a great tool for healing your body from the effects of a fever.
Boosts immune system
Due to its powerful antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral agents, peppermint oil is a common remedy for those with low immune systems and immune disorders. Its components menthol, camphor and carvacrol are even resistant to bacteria strains found in E-coli, staph infections and salmonella.
Promotes healthy blood circulation
Peppermint oil can improve blood circulation quickly. When applied to your skin, it comes into contact with olfactory nerve endings and immediately increases your pulse rate and blood circulation. As a result of the increased blood flow, oxygen reaches vital organs more quickly and improves brain function.
By improving the complications associated with poor blood circulation, peppermint can help diabetics, as well as those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Improves hormones and ovarian health
Hormonal balance can be achieved with the use of peppermint oil. Hormones affect many functions within the body and can greatly impact a person’s health. Those suffering from polycystic fibrosis can also benefit from peppermint oil due to its anti-androgen properties. Peppermint oil has also been found to be effective in fighting herpes.
Antibacterial properties in peppermint oil make it a formidable enemy against infections. Peppermint oil has been used to treat internal infections, such as urinary tract infections and yeast infections, and external infections, such as yeast-causing dandruff and nail fungus.
Inhibits growth of cancer
Peppermint oil contains menthol, which has been shown in clinical research to inhibit the growth of prostate cancer. Peppermint also protects against cellular death and DNA damage incurred after radiation therapy.
As you can see, there are many uses for peppermint oil. It can kill germs and bacteria, heal skin and organs, treat major life-threatening illnesses, regulate the body, and promote overall balance and well-being. Plus it smells and tastes great! Its flavor has penetrated our toothpaste, ice creams, teas, breath mints and chewing gums.
Peppermint is one of the oldest medicinal herbs to be used and recorded. Its health benefits were first documented around 1,000 BC! Peppermint was used for its healing properties during ancient times in Greece, Egypt, China and Japan.
Although it is native to the Middle East and Europe, it spread like wildfire due to its many benefits. Today, it is clinically recommended for promoting stomach and colon health.
Judging by the amount and diversity of its potential uses, peppermint oil should be recommended for so much more.
-The Alternative Daily