Peppermint or Mentha piperita is a hybrid of water mint and spearmint plant. It is a strong aromatic herb and belongs to the family Lamiaceae. This herb has a sweet taste and a cooling effect post its consumption. It has a culinary use and is used as a flavouring agent in candy, desserts, salads, beverages and other food items. The plant is extensively cultivated in Asia, North America and Europe. Peppermint grows well in wet and rainy areas.
Peppermint plant has dark green leaves and the flowers of the plant are lavender- pinkish in colour. The peppermint plant propagates through underground stems or stolons. There are two varieties of peppermint which include black and white peppermint. The oil from white variety of peppermint is more delicate and more expensive.
Mentha piperita owns sharp and fresh odor of menthol with pungent taste and cooling effect. It works as a strong antimicrobial agent and muscle relaxant.
Peppermint oil has high content of menthol, carboxyl esters including methyl acetate, menthone, mentofuran and 1, 8-Cineole, falvonoids, terpenoids and other minor components as well.
Peppermint oil is an essential volatile oil obtained through steam distillation process. It is a sweet and colourless liquid, which principally consists of menthol or peppermint camphor and menthone and is widely used in medicines and pharmaceutical industries.
The principal component of peppermint has a backbone of monoterpenes. It has soothing and energizing effect on the smooth muscles of the colon, relaxes the bowel muscles and is hence used in digestive ailments. Menthol activates the special receptors (TRPMB) present in the skin tissues and thus provides cooling sensation. It is a versatile herb since it can be used in various forms, such as, leaf, oil, leaf extract, leaf water.
Benefits of Peppermint
Reduces Pain: Peppermint oil is an effective painkiller, relaxes muscles and nerves. It eases muscles and joint pain related to arthritis. It is a well known herbal pain relieving remedy, soothes painful and inflamed muscles and aching back. It is useful in neuralgia, fibromyalgia, myofascial pain syndrome and myalgia. Thus it is one of the important ingredients of soothing balms, herbal oils and ointments.
Improves Digestion: Peppermint oil can relieve digestive symptoms such as gas, bloating and indigestion. It reduces stomach ache and soothes digestion. It is helpful in irritable bowel syndrome as well. It prevents indigestion, dyspepsia, colic, bloating, nausea and vomiting.
Improves Oral Health: Peppermint oil is exceptionally powerful for fighting oral pathogens and killing common bacteria that can lead to cavities and gum disease. Therefore, peppermint oil refreshes mouth by fighting bad breath.
Relieves headaches: Peppermint oil is one of the most common essential oils used for providing relief in headaches and migraines.
- Relieves Sunburn: Since menthol in peppermint oil is anti-inflammatory, it can reduce the intensity of sunburn.
Calms Itching: Peppermint oil is topically used to calm irritation linked with pruritus or itch. It calms itching associated with bug bites, hives.
Improves Respiratory Health: Oil on inhalation eases inflammation related to respiratory tract, sinus, nose and throat.
Improves Brain Health: Peppermint oil improves alertness, mental focus and possesses memory-enhancing property. It boosts energy level as well.
Used for fragrance: It is extensively used in foods, pharmaceutical products, flavoring agents, personal hygiene items, aromatherapy, bath products, mouthwash, toothpaste and other topical preparations to soothe the skin, and as a fragrance.
Works as Bug Repellent: Due to its pungent and sharp odour, it works as a bug repellent.
Therapeutic properties of peppermint oil make it a part of Arthrogold Oil and Arthrogold Combo.