The family Lamiaceae is proud to have the Mint or Mentha plant in its rows. Even more so, there are about 13 to 18 varieties of mint altogether.
Mint has an intense smell and taste that many people find refreshing and pleasant. Also, mint provides cooling qualities and it is thus used in many cosmetic products, including: mouthwashes, ointments, toothpaste, bubble baths etc.
Mint is often used in the culinary world as well and it gives each meal, whether it’s sweet or salty a specific flavor. But this is not the end of it. Mint is amazing when it comes to providing health benefit, too.
Read on to learn the best health benefits that mint has to offer.
- Encourages Digestion
Mint can easily help you deal with indigestion. This herb is full of antioxidants and phytonutrients that soothe the stomach. Also, the smell of mint activates the salivary glands and eases the food digestion process by producing digestive enzymes.
These enzymes loosen up the stomach muscles and prevent spasms.
As The University of Maryland Medical Center states, the menthol and methyl salicylate found calms the stomach in a wonderful way and provides normal food digestion.
Prepare a cup of mint tea and drink it after every meal to improve the work of your gastrointestinal tract.
- Treats Headache and Nausea
Migraines and headaches can be easily fixed by consuming mint regularly. Due to its strong smell and taste, the mind works amazingly externally as well.
You can rub your forehead or nose with several mint leaves and let them cure your headache in no time.
- Stops Hiccups
Hiccups occur when there is extra air in our lungs and stomach, so by consuming mint water, you can stop them for goof. The Backyard Medicine book states that the hiccups can be solved promptly by mint consumption due to the menthol found in the herb.
- Improves Breast Feeding
Problems with breastfeeding, such as tenderness, pain and discomfort in both breasts and nipples can be treated with simple mint leaf rub or a mint tea. Many studies have confirmed the miracle benefits of mint, so give it a try.
- Ameliorates the Memory
As many scientific research showed, mint works very well in the aromatherapy department and can encourage the thinking and memorizing process.
Mint can help you fix your forgetfulness, so prepare yourself a mint tea and drink it regularly. Also, you can leave the mints as an aromatic around the house to feel more energized.
- Helps with Respiratory Problems and Cough
Since it smells pretty intensely, mint can alleviate the breathing process significantly and can treat any sort of cold or cough. You can find a mind cream and rub it on your chest or you can do the same with fresh mint leaves as well. To fix your breathing problems inhale mint tea steam or drink mint tea on a daily basis.
- Stimulates Weight Loss
Because the mint is able to produce digestive enzymes and help with the food processing, it can promote weight loss as well. Make sure to include mint in your diet and turn the fat storage into energy.
- Triggers the Immune System
Many beneficial nutrients are found in mint leaves, such as phosphorous, calcium, vitamins C, D, E and small amounts of vitamin B complex. All these can stimulate the immunity and make you resistant against infections and colds.
- Deals with Cancer
One research proved the beneficial mint influence on cancer patients, especially if the cancer was found on the colon, liver, skin and lungs. Because it is full of phytochemicals, mint leaves can cease the blood supply that makes the tumors grow.
- Gets Rid of Asthma
Since mint leaves are recommended for treating many respiratory diseases, they can also cure asthma. Mint is rich in rosmarinic acid, which offers strong antioxidant benefits, and this prevents the allergy-triggering leukotrienes.
- Boosts the Mood
By only smelling mint leaves, you are already doing your organism a favor, and you should feel energized and refreshed instantly. Mint leaves can also reduce stress and anxiety, since it helps the body release more serotonin.
Whenever you find yourself in a bad mood, trust mint leaves to sort this out. You can always go for a mint bubble bath and feel your body relax due to the aroma.
- Improves Oral Health
Mint leaves, as aforementioned, are rich in anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory compounds. As a result, these can prevent bacteria of any sort to penetrate the organism, especially through the oral cavity.
You can start by rubbing mint leaves your teeth and gums, and let it act for several minutes.
Mint is a very simple plant to grow. It has specific root system, called runners since it grows new leaves and you can plant along their roots as they grow.
Make sure to plant the mint leaves in separate pots, since they tend to overtake plenty of space once they start to grow.
You can use mint seeds or just replant an existing leaf. The second option works better and faster. To do this, take a water-retaining container that is 12 to 16 inches wide, potting soil, and mint plant.
Make sure the mint gets a lot of sunlight and keep watering it so it doesn’t dry off.
Trim the mint plant to 6 inches in height- this way, it will create bush and won’t extend in another direction. Remember to trim the mint’s flower buds so the plant stays in place.
It is important to know that you shouldn’t harvest more than 1/3 of the leaves, so you don’t lose the entire plant. You can dry off the picked leaves, by hanging them upside down or by setting them on a tray.
You can use mint for various purposes: in cooking, as a drink aromatic, as a cosmetic product and as a remedy. You pick.
Other included sources linked in Diet of Life’s article: