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Healthy Diet Plans >>  Health Food >>  Health Benefits Of Mint

Mint Health and Nutrition Benefits

Mint is a popular plant that is commonly found in backyard gardens. It is a fragrant plant which is also easy to grow. It has become a popular treatment for digestion trouble, colic and even hiccups. The most popular types of mint are spearmint, peppermint and penny royal. Spearmint is mainly utilized for its aromatic properties and does not possess the same medicinal properties as peppermint.
Peppermint health benefits are because it is the main source of menthol which is used for various medicinal purposes. Many people make use of mint for good health. It has many beneficial advantages and helps in treating several common ailments. Here are some of the many mint health benefits.
  • Asthma:  Mint is used in many common home remedies for asthma as it is helps in reducing phlegm. The juice of mint leaves is beneficial for those who experience constant discomfort from asthma symptoms. The juice may be extracted by crushing mint leaves. To enhance the effectiveness of the treatment, a small quantity of ginger juice may also be combined. The mixture should be consumed twice daily. Since the taste of both mint and ginger can be harsh for some people, a little bit of honey may be added.
  • Cough: Mint also provides relief from cough. In order to alleviate coughing, a tea made with mint leaves and a pinch of salt may be consumed daily.
  • Diabetics: Mint may also be helpful in giving relief to diabetic individuals. Those affected with diabetes tend to suffer from complications such as bloating, indigestion and nerve problems. In order to relieve these symptoms, peppermint in the form of capsules, tinctures, topical applications, oils and teas may be used. A common outcome of diabetes is neuropathy where symptoms such as tingling and numbness are experienced in the hands and feet. Creams and other applications which contain menthol are helpful in alleviating nerve pain and soothing the body. However diabetics should consult their doctor before using any alternative remedies.
  • Energy: Mint leaves may be boiled in water to make a refreshing and rejuvenating tea. This beverage is ideal for easing away tiredness and providing energy to the body and mind. Mint may also be combined with other beneficial herbs such as ginkgo biloba and gotu kala also known as Pennywort to make herbal teas.
  • Headaches: Menthol and menthone are the primary components of mint and these are effective in alleviating headaches. Those who suffer from headaches and migraines may place mint tea compresses on the forehead to relieve discomfort.
  • Heartburn: Some people are of the opinion that mint is effective in treating heartburn. While mint may be partially beneficial in providing relief from heartburn in the initial stages, it eventually results in acid production and this can aggravate the symptoms for the individual in the long term. Therefore, in spite of the soothing properties of mint, it should be avoided by those who experience recurring heartburn.
  • Hirsutism: Hirsutism is a condition that affects some women and is characterized by an excessive growth of facial hair. A study done on women with hirsutism revealed that there was a reduction in testosterone levels when they drank two cups of green mint tea daily for a period of five days. Hirsutism occurs when there are abnormally high levels of male sex hormones in a woman’s body. Conventional treatment for hirsutism involves intake of anti-androgen medications. Green mint may prove to be a beneficial alternative to such conventional medication.

Mint for Acne

Acne develops on the skin where the skin pores get clogged. The oil glands produce natural oil or sebum and this oil reaches the surface of the skin through the pores. In some cases, the oil glands start producing an excessive amount of oil and the pores become blocked. Dirt, dead skin cells and bacteria adhere to the oil and an acne outbreak occurs. There are various treatments available for acne but many of them can be quite strong and harsh for the skin in the long term. This is the reason why natural acne remedies have gained so much popularity. Natural treatments are much gentler on the skin. Many people prefer to use mint for acne treatment due to its beneficial properties. It is very easy to use mint as an acne remedy. One can grow mint leaves in a small pot at home itself for regular use. The leaves may be crushed to extract the juice and this may be applied to the affected areas and kept on for thirty minutes. Such herbal remedies take time to produce results and hence must be used on a regular basis. Mint helps to relieve the swelling and redness and prevents further occurrences of acne. You can also use mint for pimples that cause itching and burning. One can also use mint for acne scars. The juice of mint leaves may be applied to the affected skin and left on for one or two minutes. When done daily, this will help to erase acne scars over time.
Mint can be used to treat other common skin problems as well and the use of mint for fair skin is also a known remedy. One could use mint for a face affected by acne or if it is affected with dry skin. Dry skin is a common condition that occurs due to various factors such as cold weather and ageing. You can use mint for dry skin treatment by applying creams and lotions infused with extracts of the herb. This will help to reduce flaking and cracked skin. One can also utilize mint to lighten and improve the appearance of sun-damaged and pigmented skin. Ground mint leaves may be mixed with rosewater and lemon juice and applied to the affected areas. Many people also use mint for eczema treatment by applying the juice extracted from fresh mint leaves.

Mint for Digestive Disorders

Digestive disorders refer to problems that affect the gastrointestinal tract. These are extremely common and can be brought on by a variety of factors. While mint may be helpful in alleviating some of the symptoms of these disorders, it can also aggravate certain symptoms. Therefore it is advisable to consult a doctor before using mint or any other natural remedy for digestive trouble. Acid reflux occurs when the acids and contents of the stomach back up into the esophagus. Individuals who face severe symptoms should avoid using mint for acid reflux. Both artificial and natural mint can irritate the stomach and trigger more symptoms of acid reflux.
  • Bloating: The digestive properties of mint make it an excellent natural treatment for flatulence and bloating.
  • Digestion: You can use mint for digestion as it is known to assist in the digestive process. You can chew on mint leaves or sip on warm mint tea.
  • Colic: Mint leaves possess antispasmodic properties and this helps in alleviating intestinal spasms which occur due to colic. Mint is a beneficial remedy for infants who suffer from colic pains.
  • Constipation: Peppermint tea also helps to relax the intestines and bowels and hence helps in easing symptoms of constipation.

Mint for Hair

One can even use mint for the hair as it helps to cleanse the scalp and keep it free from infections. To use mint for hair growth, you can add some drops of mint essential oil to your regular shampoo. There are different methods that will provide you with positive results of using mint for hair. It is necessary however to speak to consult a hair therapist before using any of these methods.
Submitted on January 16, 2014