Peppermint oil is a versatile natural remedy with a very pleasing aroma and taste. It is actually a “hybrid mint”, being the result of a cross between watermint and spearmint. It is my personal favorite from the mint family.
Peppermint has been used successfully for many, many years in folk medicine and aromatherapy. Peppermint and its soothing oil is traditionally used to soothe or treat symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and many others (see article below). The aroma of peppermint has been studied for its potential memory and alertness enhancing properties. It is among the most valuable of all natural remedies that we enjoy.
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Pleasantly suitable for an abundance of oral and topical uses, 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 essential oil gives a cooling sensation and has a calming effect on the body, which can relieve sore muscles when used topically. It also has antimicrobial properties so it can help freshen bad breath and soothe digestive issues.
Not only is peppermint one of the oldest European herbs used for medicinal purposes, other historical accounts date its use to ancient Chinese and Japanese folk medicine. It’s also mentioned in Greek mythology the nymph Mentha was transformed into an herb by Pluto who had fallen in love with her and wanted people to appreciate her for years to come.
The health benefits of peppermint oil have been documented back to 1,000 BC and have been found in several Egyptian pyramids.
Peppermint Oil Benefits
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. A study shows that peppermint oil applied topically can help relief pain associated with Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain Syndrome. The study found that peppermint oil, eucalyptus, menthol, capsaicin and other herbal preparations may be helpful. calyptus, menthol, capsaicin and other herbal preparations.(1) Try my recipe for homemade muscle rub to ease muscle pain.
2. Sinus 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.
3. Joint Therapy –When your joints get achy, applying some pure peppermint oil mixed with lavender oil can cool muscles like an ice bath, but help you to stay warm and dry.
4. Reduce Hunger Cravings –Inhaling peppermint essential oil can stave off the munchies 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.” For those with chronic fatigue syndrome, peppermint oil may improve focus and concentration.
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. Try my homemade rosemary mint shampoo, a safe and economical shampoo for you and your family.
7. Allergy Relief –Peppermint oil is highly effective at relaxing muscles in your nasal passages and can help clear out the muck and pollen during allergy season. Diffusing peppermint along with clove oil and eucalyptus oil can also reduce allergy symptoms.
8. 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.
9. 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.
10. 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.
11. 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. Follow this recipe and make your own natural bug floor cleaner!
12. Skin Health -Peppermint oil has calming effects on skin inflammation. You can mix peppermint oil into lip balm and body lotion for a nice cooling sensation. Try my Lavender Mint Lip Balm to nourish lips throughout the year. Mixing peppermint and lavender essential oils can improve eczema and psoriasis when applied topically.
13. Acne Treatment -According to medical studies peppermint has anti-microbial properties so is an excellent ingredient to help cure acne naturally.
14. 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. A study from researchers at the Neurological Clinic at the University of Kiel, Germany, found that a combination of oils, including peppermint oil had “significant analgesic effect with a reduction in sensitivity to headaches.” The oils were applied to the forehead and temples for pain relief.(2)
15. 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 or make your own homemade rosemary mint shampoo that can help stop hair loss and thinning.