Peppermint – the minty, cool scent and flavor that we are all familiar with. It’s the most popular flavor of candy, chewing gum, and breath mints. But did you know that the real peppermint, the actual plant, is more than just a flavoring to candies and breath fresheners? It’s a very useful herb and it can be used in many different ways.
The Peppermint Plant
The peppermint is a unique herb, a cross species between watermint and spearmint. Whoever knew that peppermint was a mix of two different mint herbs? The plant has become highly widespread across all regions of the globe. It is no longer endemic to a specific region, although it originated in Europe. Because of its hybrid nature, it cannot pollinate. Instead, it multiplies through its rhizomes. It is very easy to grow and can be bred almost anywhere as long as the soil is moist and watered regularly.
The Uses of Peppermint
Let’s be reasonable about this. Based on scientific archaeological evidence, peppermint plants have been used for more than ten thousand years. Amazing, isn’t it? All the way back to the prehistoric people, peppermint was already a popular herbal plant with a lot of medicinal functions.
It is highly regarded as the all-around solution for gastric pains. Until today, peppermint is a home remedy for nausea, seasickness, vomiting, dizziness, irritable bowel syndrome, loose bowel movement, stomach cramps, and any other uneasiness you may feel in the digestive system. It can be used as a fresh tea brewed from the leaves, or as topical massage oil from the leaf extract.
Peppermint oil and other topical peppermint products such as lotions and ointments are mostly used today for pain relief. When you experience muscle spasms, you apply a menthol ointment on the painful area. Chances are this ointment contains peppermint extract. The soothing and cool feeling that the extract produces on the skin relieves muscle tension and calms the nerves. It also helps tone down swelling and inflammation from injuries.
When you have a headache, a minty balm is the first thing you look for. These types of products also have peppermint in them. The cooling effect of peppermint is a very powerful pain reliever and relaxant. If it works in small doses as an ingredient in lotions and ointments, it would definitely work better as a pure extract.
Peppermint oil is purely extracted from the leaves of the herb through steam distillation. Its medicinal properties are retained even with the physical change of the substance. Today, in our modern era, peppermint oil is widely used for aromatherapy. The minty scent is a great stress reliever and it also works as a muscle relaxant.
Using peppermint oil topically is similar to using any ointment you can find in the market. The oil is a very effective product because it has pure, undiluted peppermint extract. It’s also much safer to use as compared to other commercial products because it doesn’t contain any additives, chemical ingredients, and other harmful substances in most skin care products today.
Peppermint oil is a great aromatherapy scent but its health benefits are definitely a bonus. Nature’s Own Essence offers the purest peppermint oil for a very reasonable price. Check it out and tell us what you think!