Studies have shown that Peppermint can help with a number of health conditions. It is known to have analgesic, anesthetic, decongestant, astringent, antiseptic, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antispasmodic, and carminative properties. Therefore, it has been found beneficial in the treatment of many conditions including colds, flu, sinusitis, dry cough, fever with chills, nausea, digestive problems, Irritable Bowel Movement (IBS), menstrual cramps, muscular pains and aches, rheumatoid arthritis, acne, itchy, oily and irritated skin, dandruff, head lice, burns, insect bites, headache, stress, mood swings and emotional imbalance.
Uses of Peppermint
Peppermint is known to balance the PH levels of the skin which may help balance the production of excessive oils of the skin. Also the astringent, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory activity of Peppermint may help diminish the appearance of acne, black heads, rashes and redness. Simply mix 2 drops of Peppermint Oil into your regular face wash every morning and at night. One drop of the oil can also be mixed into a moisturizer and applied onto the affected area overnight for acne or skin rashes.
Headaches and Migraines
According to researchers, Peppermint has vasodilatory effects which may help in the dilation of constricted blood vessels – one of the common triggers of headaches and migraines. When you feel a light headache or migraine is coming on, apply a small amount of Peppermint oil on the temples, forehead and back of the neck to help alleviate the pains. If any kind of irritation occurs, Peppermint Oil should be diluted in extra virgin olive oil. Mix 3-4 drops of Peppermint Oil into one tablespoon of olive oil. Based on the sensitivity level olive oil amount can be increased.
Peppermint is known to be a natural insect repellent. Therefore, applying Peppermint Oil thoroughly into the hair for about 30 minutes before taking a shower may help get rid of head lice. This should be repeated three times a week. If you experience any skin irritation, you can try diluting the Peppermint oil with a small amount of olive oil. To get rid of nits (lice eggs), use a very fine wooden comb twice daily especially right after taking a shower.
Peppermint is known to relax constricted muscles. Using a peppermint soap will help you in that period.
Peppermint has analgesic and anti-inflammatory activity which may help with muscular pains and arthritis. Simply apply Peppermint soap onto the affected area 2 to 3 times daily. For strained muscles after strenuous workouts or sports, using Peppermint Soap into warm bath water can relax and soothe strained muscles.
Stress and Anxiety
Recent studies have shown that aromatherapy using peppermint oil may help relieve anxiety, stress, emotional imbalance and stress-induced headaches or migraines. While you are inhaling peppermint aroma, breathe in through the nose and out the mouth and let your body loosen and relax. Listening to any of your favorite natural spa music can add to the relaxation. Repeat this aromatherapy at least 3 times a weak.
What are the Side Effects of Peppermint?
Peppermint or its oil should not be consumed if you are being treated for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), heartburn, acid reflux, hiatal hernia, and gallstones. It is not recommended for infants, or women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Peppermint should be avoided if you are taking cyclosporine or any other medication for preventing the rejection of transplants. It is advised to regulate your blood sugar and blood pressure levels when taking Peppermint therapeutically for longer periods because it may lower blood sugar or blood pressure levels. To avoid any kind of skin irritation or allergic reaction it is recommended to do a skin test before applying it for therapeutic purposes. If any kind of irritation occurs, stop using Peppermint Oil or try diluting it into extra virgin olive oil.
Basil is known to contain antibacterial properties. When used in natural skin care products, basil is one herb that can help stimulate sluggish and congested circulation of skin, thus making it an excellent cure for acne and minor skin infections. It is also reputed to have antiseptic value and to neutralize the toxins of bites and stings.