Peppermint, an herbal extract that tastes great in candy canes, also has holistic uses. With it's ability to morph into herbs, teas and oils this friendly scent can calm your day and revitalize your spirit. Check out this list of 10 uses for peppermint and try adding it to your daily routine.
1. Eases upset stomachs
Try sipping on a cup of peppermint tea if your stomach is feeling sick or sour. Peppermint is known to relax the esophageal sphincter which calms the throat and stomach lining. If suffering from irritable bowel syndrome, peppermint can be taken in capsules to ease painful symptoms.
2. Reduces the growth of bacteria
Peppermint, just like lemon can reduce the bacteria count when used to wash or clean a space. This occurs because peppermint is a powerful anti-microbial agent that can tackle organisms like Staph, Ecoli and Salmonella.
3. Releases tension headaches
According to American Family Physician, massaging peppermint oil on the temples and forehead at the first sign of tension can ease a powerful headache. Try adding a few drops of oil to a hot bath if the headache really knocks you out.
4. Improves lung capacity
While peppermint won't improve the actual size of your lungs, it will help you breathe longer and deeper. That's because it contains rosmarinic acid, which reduces inflammation and opens the lungs. Try sipping on a cup of tea if your cough is getting out of control.
5. Soothes skin irritation
Peppermint is known to ease inflammation, so applying it to an itchy area or bug bite can relieve the need to itch. Try using peppermint soap if you suffer from psoriasis or other skin conditions.
6. Stress relief
Scent is one of the most powerful sensations and the smell of peppermint can help you chill out. Try picking up some peppermint oil and adding it to your scent diffuser or hot bath if you are suffering from too much stress.
7. May reduce muscle tension
Rubbing peppermint oil on the sore parts of your body can help ease muscle pain. Try applying a hot compress scented with peppermint oil to a part of your body that really hurts. The lower back is especially susceptible to the scent of peppermint.
8. Bad breath
The ability to eliminate bad breath is one of peppermint's best known uses. Try picking up an herbal peppermint, mouthwash or gum if your breath is getting out of control. Drinking peppermint tea or chewing on peppermint leaves can also eliminate breath.
9. Appetite suppressant
It's a known fact that peppermint can be used as an appetite suppressant since it stimulates the stomach without adding any food. Try adding a hot cup of tea to your daily diet if you are trying to quit munching on snacks.
10. Canker sores
Since peppermint acts as an antimicrobial agent, it can eliminate the painful presence of canker sores in one's mouth. As previously mentioned, chew on the leaves or switch to herbal peppermint and the canker sore's symptoms will vanish.