Today we enjoy a host of pharmacological treatments for what ails you, but just a hundred years or so, medicinal treatments were concocted of what is found in nature. Naturally, as new offerings of treatments became available – advanced treatments that came from the laboratory, not the backyard or woods – people were anxious to try these new treatments. And that is not a bad thing, but there is a whole world of natural and readily available plants or plant parts that are just as effective, if not better, than some of the commercial prescriptions from your doctor. Mint is one of those things. It has more uses that you can imagine.
1. Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or IBS, is a debilitating condition that affects the intestines and causing either extreme uncontrolled diarrhea or constipation. Sufferers have painful bouts of cramping, stomach pain, and bloating. Mint is a natural way to relieve the symptoms of IBS. Use fresh mint in a tea or added to salad, fruit salad, or soup. Peppermint aids digestion and eases gas pains (most OTC gas meds contain peppermint); it helps you digest your food faster and relaxes the muscles in your intestines.
2. Simply chewing fresh mint leaves confers benefits. Mint is added to gum and candy, but mint is a powerhouse of antioxidants, possibly assisting the body resist the spread of cancer. It also has properties that prevent and treat allergies and helps soothe an upset stomach. If you have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), mint can be contraindicated and can cause the stomach acid to back up into the esophagus.
3. Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease of the lungs and can be very serious. At one time, tuberculosis was rare in developed countries, but HIV weakens the immune system and prevents the body from fighting TB. Inhaling peppermint oil will reduce the inflammation and prevent a recurrence. Fresh mint mixed with honey and vinegar and can be added to fruit juice.
4. A unique use for mint that many do not know but all sufferers of acne need to know is mint’s role in preventing future pimples, healing existing pimples, and fading acne scars. Crushed mint leaves when applied to the face help fade blemishes. When mixed with oats, mint can make a perfect exfoliating mask.
5. Strangely, mint can help your memory. In studies, fresh mint, either chewed or made into a tea helped with cognitive issues and also boosted energy and alertness.
6. Mint is very effective in reducing nausea from chemotherapy. There is a range of meds to help with nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy. Compared to some treatments for nausea, mint is more effective and inexpensive. Chew the leaves or add it to liquids or food.The main benefit of prescription drugs for nausea is that they can be added to an IV when the patient is unable to keep anything down.
7. Peppermint eases the pain of a migraine or a tension headache also. Crush fresh mint leaves and rub the oil on your temples and forehead and/or inhale the scent.
8. Mint relieves stress. The oil from crushed peppermint can be cooling and energizing. Rub the oil on your body or add to a warm bath for instant relief. You can also burn the oil. Just the smell will relax you.
9. Oil from fresh peppermint works better than mouthwash for protecting teeth against the biofilm that forms on the teeth and causes cavities. Crushed and dry peppermint can be added to your regular toothpaste for whitening your teeth and freshening your breath.
10. Mint oil can relieve coughs and respiratory issues. Crush fresh mint and rub it on your chest, add to a vaporizer, and inhale to clear congestion.
The old ways are not necessarily obsolete. There are wisdom and valid home remedies. Not all health conditions need a prescription. Home remedies can be used for many things and even in conjunction with prescription medications. Before mixing prescription meds with home remedies, be sure to consult your doctor.