Benefits of Peppermint Essential Oil

Pleasantly suitable for an abundance of oral and topical uses and antimicrobial properties, peppermint may be the most versatile essential oil in the world along with lavender. Literally, there are few body, health, and mind issues that it cannot help.

Peppermint is one of the oldest European herbs used for medicinal purposes, and other historical accounts date its use to ancient Chinese and Japanese folk medicine. The health benefits of peppermint oil as well as peppermint oil uses have been documented back to 1,000 BC and have been found in several Egyptian pyramids.

Peppermint Oil Benefits

(and Medicinal Uses)

    I  honestly cannot think of one reason why anyone would choose not to have peppermint oil in his or her medicine cabinet at home!

    Ready to start harnessing the health benefits of peppermint?

    If so, here are several ways to use this incredible herb:

    1. Muscle Pain Relief: Peppermint essential oil is a very effective natural painkiller and muscle relaxant. It is especially helpful in soothing an aching back, sore muscles, and melting away a tension headache. 

    2. Sinus, Allergy & Throat Care: Inhaling diffused peppermint oil can oftentimes immediately unclog your sinuses and offer relief to scratchy throats. Peppermint acts as an expectorant and may provide relief for colds, cough, sinusitis, asthma, and bronchitis. Diffusing peppermint along with clove oil and eucalyptus oil can also reduce allergy symptoms.

    3. Joint & Muscle Therapy: Applying some pure peppermint oil mixed with lavender oil can cool muscles & joints like an ice bath, but help you to stay warm and dry.

    4. Reduce Hunger Cravings: Inhaling peppermint essential oil can stave off hunger cravings and can help you feel full faster. If you can’t have a diffuser with you at dinnertime, try applying a couple drops on your temples or chest, or take a couple of deep sniffs from the bottle.

    5. Natural Energizer: For a non-toxic alternative to dangerous energy drinks, take a few whiffs of peppermint. It will perk you up on long road trips, in school or any other time you need to “burn the midnight oil.” 

    6. Improve Your Shampoo: Add 2-3 drops of peppermint essential oil to your regular morning shampoo and conditioner to stimulate the scalp, energize your mind, and wake up! Because it is a powerful antiseptic, peppermint can also help remove dandruff and lice

    7. ADHD Support: Try spritzing some peppermint oil on your child’s shirt before study time or placing a drop on her tongue or under her nose for improved concentration and alertness.

    8. Anti-Itch: Whether you’re battling a rash or poison ivy, applying some peppermint oil mixed with lavender oil is certain to cool and soothe any itch.

    9. Fever Reducer: Because of peppermint oil’s cooling effects, it is an excellent natural treatment to bring down a fever especially in children.  Simply mix peppermint oil with coconut oil and rub it on a child’s neck and on the bottom of their feet to help stabilize a fever instead of aspirin or other drugs.

    10. Natural Bug Repellant: Ticks aren’t the only bugs that hate peppermint oil. In fact, ants, spiders, cockroaches, mosquitos, mice, and even lice will be repelled. 

    11. Skin Health & Acne Treatment: Peppermint oil has calming effects on skin inflammation. You can mix peppermint oil into lip balm and body lotion for a nice cooling sensation. Mixing peppermint and lavender essential oils can improve eczema and psoriasis when applied topically. According to medical studies one of the best Peppermint Oil Uses is facial treatment thanks to anti-microbial properties so is an excellent ingredient to help cure acne naturally.

    12. Headache Cure: Peppermint oil has the ability to improve circulation, heal the gut and relax tense muscles. All of these conditions can cause tension headaches or migraines making peppermint oil an excellent natural treatment. Apply to the forehead and temples for pain relief.

    13. Hair Growth: Peppermint oil is used in many high quality hair care products because it can naturally thicken and nourish damaged hair. Simply add some peppermint oil to your current shampoo. 

    14. Sunburn Relief: Peppermint oil can hydrate burnt skin and relieve the pain from sunburns. You can mix peppermint oil with a bit of coconut oil and apply it directly to the affected area, or make a natural homemade sunburn spray to relief pain and support healthy skin renewal.

    15. IBS Treatment: Taken internally in capsule form, Peppermint has been proven to be effective at naturally treating IBS (irritable bowel syndrome). One study found a 50% reduction in IBS symptoms with 75% of patients who used it.(3)

    16. Improve Bloating and Indigestion: Peppermint oil has been established as a natural alternative to drugs like Buscopan to reduce spasms of the colon. It works by relaxing the muscles of your intestines, which can also reduce bloating and gas. Try peppermint tea or adding 1 drop of peppermint oil to your water before meals.

    17. Freshen Breath and Reduce Cavities: Peppermint oil, due to its antiseptic properties, is very useful in dental care. Tried and true for well over 1,000 years peppermint has been used to naturally freshen breath and help kill germs. According to studies, peppermint oil performed better than the mouthwash chemicals chlorhexidine at reducing cavities. 

    18. Reduce Indigestion & Nausea: A medical study found that peppermint oil uses reduced nausea that is induced by chemotherapy better than standard medical treatments. Simply adding a drop of peppermint oil to water, or rubbing 1-2 drops behind your ears, or even diffusing it can help to reduce nausea.

    19. Respiratory benefits: Peppermint essential oil has the ability to open your airways and act as a decongestant. Mix it with coconut oil and eucalyptus essential oil to make a homemade vapor rub to help reduce the symptoms of asthma and bronchitis.

    20. Colic: Medical research has discovered using peppermint oil is equally effective as the drug Simethione for treating infantile colic, without the side effects associated with prescribed medications. Peppermint oil is an essential part of a natural remedy for colic.

    21. Teething: Peppermint oil is a great natural remedy to relieve the pain associated with teething in infants. Simply mix peppermint oil with coconut oil at a 1:1 ratio and rub on the gum area.

    22. Cancer treatment: Clinical research indicates that peppermint contains the compound menthol, which inhibits prostate cancer growth. Also, studies found peppermint protects against radiation-induced DNA damage and cell death.(5)

     

    Concerns and Potential Interactions

    Peppermint oil is likely safe when taken by mouth in amounts commonly found in food, and when used topically.(7) Ingesting peppermint oil may cause side effects for some that include heartburn, flushing, mouth sores, headache. Some prescription medications and over-the-counter medications may adversely interact with peppermint oil. Enteric-coated peppermint oil supplements may cause rapid dissolving leading to heartburn, nausea, and rapid absorption of some medications. Take necessary precautions.

    The following medications carry a “moderate” potential for interaction with peppermint oil:

    Neoral, Sandimmune, Elavil, Haldol, Zofran, Inderal, Theo-Dur, Calan, Isoptin, Prilosec, Prevacid, Protonix, Diazepam, Valium, Soma, Viracept, Cataflam, Voltaren, Ibuprofen/Motrin, Mobic, Feldene, Celebrex, Elavil, Warfarin/Coumadin, Glucotrol, Iosartan, Cozaar, Mevacor, Nizoral, Sporanox, Allegra, Halcion.

    The following medications carry a “minor” potential for interaction with peppermint oil:

    Over-the-counter and prescription antacids including Tums, Rolaids, Ripan, Bilagog, Amphojel, Tagamet, Zantac, Axid, Pepcid, Prilosec, Prevacid, Aciphex, Protonix, Nexium.

    Natural supplement precautions:

    Peppermint can reduce the absorption of iron when taken simultaneously. If taking iron supplements and peppermint oil, allow at least 3 hours between the two. Peppermint oil also increases the absorption of quercetin when taken at the same time; allow at least 3 hours between taking these together.

    References:
    http://draxe.com/peppermint-oil-uses-benefits/ http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/peppermint-oil-uses-benefits-effects?page=2

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