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The Many Health Benefits of Fresh Mint Leaves
Who doesn’t love the fresh tasting, fresh smelling scent of mint? Peppermint has been used for centuries. It has even been found in the Egyptian pyramids, dating back to at least 1,000BC. Although everyone loves the taste, modern science can now confirm that this wonderful herb has dozens of healing properties.
Our ancestors were well acquainted with the medicinal value of mint. It’s been used for healing purposes by the ancient Romans, Greeks, and Egyptians.
Today’s modern research shows that mint has many different abilities for healing, including topical, internal, and aromatic applications.
Keep reading to find out all the healing properties fresh mint leaves, essential oils, and other forms of mint can offer you.
1. Stops the Pain of Shingles
A study done in 2002 found that applying peppermint oil directly to shingles stopped the pain from associated neuropathic shingles. In fact, this pain relieving effect lasted during the entire 2 month study.
2. Stops Dyspepsia
The Ailment Pharmacology and Therapy journal published a study in 2000 showed that when subjects who suffered from functional dyspepsia took 90mg of peppermint oil along with 50mg of caraway seed oil each day, 67 percent of subjects reported that their symptoms were much improved.
3. Inhibits the Herpes Virus
Consuming peppermint has been found to inhibit the activity of the herpes simplex virus type 1, including types that were acyclovir resistant. Read more about top all-natural anti-viral compounds.
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4. Possible Anti-Cancer Agent
Although most people think of peppermint for its ability to sooth upset tummies, recent studies show some other powerful compounds in this plant. Peppermint contains a powerful phytonutrient called monoterpene. This phytonutirents has been shown to stop the growth of breast, liver, and pancreatic tumors in studies done with animals.
5. Helps with IBS
Peppermint oil capsules are a safe and effective treatment for those suffering from IBS (irritable bowel syndrome). One study done in 2007 showed that 75 percent of subjects who consumed peppermint oil saw a more than 50 percent reduction of their symptoms. Another study published in January of 2014 also showed that peppermint oil relieved the abdominal pain in diarrhea-predominant IBS.
6. Tuberculosis Regression
Inhaling peppermint oil causes a rapid reduction in the inflammation associated with tuberculosis, according to a study done in 2009. Researchers concluded that peppermint oil could be used to prevent both recurrences of tuberculosis and the exacerbation of pulmonary tuberculosis.
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7. Hay Fever Relief
A preclinical study found that extracts of peppermint leaves stop histamine release in the body, which means that it could be clinically effective in stopping hay fever or reducing the symptoms of allergic rhinitis.
8. Prostate Cancer Protection
Preclinical studies show that peppermint has certain compounds, such as menthol, that slow the growth of prostate cancer.
SEE ALSO: Top 4 Natural Ways to Avoid Cancer
9. Stops Chemo-Induced Nausea
Peppermint oil was found in a 2013 study to reduce the nausea that accompanies chemotherapy, and at a much cheaper price than pharmaceutical-based treatments.
10. Promotes Oral Health
Peppermint oil makes a superior mouthwash, killing the germs that cause bad breath, along with streptococcus driven biofilm that are associated with dental cavities. Peppermint leaves were used during the middle ages to whiten teeth and fight bad breath. Find out more natural remedies for oral health.
A. Sustrikova, I. Salamon, Essential oil of peppermint (Mentha x piperita L.) from fields in Eastern Slovakia., 2004: Zahradnictvi Horticultural Science 31(1): 31-36
J H Liu, G H Chen, H Z Yeh, C K Huang, S K Poon. Enteric-coated peppermint-oil capsules in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome: a prospective, randomized trial. J Gastroenterol. 1997 Dec;32(6):765-8. PMID: 9430014
B May, S Köhler, B Schneider. Efficacy and tolerability of a fixed combination of peppermint oil and caraway oil in patients suffering from functional dyspepsia. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2000 Dec;14(12):1671-7. PMID: 11121917
V A Shkurupiĭ, O A Odintsova, N V Kazarinova, K G Tkrachenko. [Use of essential oil of peppermint (Mentha piperita) in the complex treatment of patients with infiltrative pulmonary tuberculosis]. Virol J. 2009 Jan 20;6:8. PMID: 17128800
T Inoue, Y Sugimoto, H Masuda, C Kamei. Effects of peppermint (Mentha piperita L.) extracts on experimental allergic rhinitis in rats. Biol Pharm Bull. 2001 Jan;24(1):92-5. PMID: 11201253
Simon J Davies, Louise M Harding, Andrew P Baranowski. A novel treatment of postherpetic neuralgia using peppermint oil. Clin J Pain. 2002 May-Jun;18(3):200-2 PMID: 12048423
Tayarani-Najaran, E Talasaz-Firoozi, R Nasiri, N Jalali, Mk Hassanzadeh. Antiemetic activity of volatile oil from Mentha spicata and Mentha× piperita in chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Ecancermedicalscience. 2013 ;7:290. Epub 2013 Jan 31. PMID: 23390455