Most of the world is familiar with peppermint as a flavoring for candy, but it’s a great herb to have on hand to use for everyday life! Peppermint is high in the following nutrients~
The book Nutritional Herbology says of peppermint:
“The oil of peppermint has been shown to be antimicrobial and antiviral against Newcastle disease, herpes simplex, vaccinia, Semliki Forest and West Nile viruses.
Contains aromatic compounds that increase the production of digestive fluids, relieve muscle spasms, increase blood circulation, reduce pains, promote sweating and are antiseptic. It also contains astringent compounds which shrink inflamed tissues. Peppermint has been used to treat indigestion, flatulence, mouth sores, loss of appetite, muscle cramps, nausea, morning sickness and dysmenorrhea.”
Steeping a cup of peppermint tea will soothe the stomach and digestive upsets. I also like to mix in some peppermint leaves with other herbs to help flavor and “sweeten” a tea.
I always make sure I have peppermint essential oil on hand for my family.
Here are some uses for peppermint oil:
*Stomach problems – I use peppermint oil most often for stomach problems. It helps nausea and digestive problems. If one of my children has a belly ache, I have them lie down, and I put 2-3 drops of the oil on the area of their stomach that is bothering them. I also have them hold the bottle under their nose and breath in deeply. At times, if their nausea is really bad because of a virus, they breath in the aroma continuously until they feel better. Several times one of us has felt on the verge of vomiting, and the aroma eventually took the nausea away. I used peppermint oil during the last phase of my pregnancy for nauseous days, and it worked wonders. WARNING: DO NOT USE PEPPERMINT OIL IN THE FIRST COUPLE TRIMESTERS. ASK YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE USING, IF PREGNANT!
*Poison Ivy – apply the oil to a poison ivy or oak rash to help with itching
*Paint - mix half a small bottle of oil to a gallon of paint to help with the fumes
*Stuffy nose or bad breath? – place a drop of oil on the tongue to help clear the nose and freshen breath. Be sure to only use a drop because this oil is strong and doesn’t taste like candy.
*Hair - when massaged into the scalp, this oil works to balance the PH levels to put a stop to oily hair, normalizing the scalp’s oil production. It also helps to stimulate hair growth. It’s recommended to mix about 4 drops of the oil with a cup of warm water before putting on scalp. Since peppermint balances the PH levels, the tingling sensation can treat dry scalp and dandruff also.