23 November 2008

Peppermint oil is considered by aromatherapists as one of the more indispensable essential oils. The oil should be a part of every traveler's first aid kit - it can work wonders for motion sickness and general nausea for some people. It is often taken internally for this; whereas ginger oil can be diluted and rubbed into the abdomen.

Growers will harvest just before the herb goes to flower to bring out the best of the oil's aroma. When allowed to mature further, the quality of the resulting oil may suffer, with a sharper, less-sweet and complex aroma.

Botanical Name
Mentha piperita

Origin
USA

Color
Clear to pale yellow

Consistency/Viscosity
Watery viscosity

Aroma
Fresh, sharp, menthol fragrance

Extraction Method
Peppermint oil is extracted from its plant by the process of steam distillation

Constituents and Chemical Composition
Menthol, menthone, 1,8-cineole, methyl acetate, methofuran, isomenthone, limonene, b-pinene, a-pinene, germacrene-d, trans-sabinene hydrate and pulegone

Therapeutic Properties
Analgesic, anesthetic, antiseptic, antigalactagogue, antiphlogistic, antispasmodic, astringent, carminative, cephalic, cholagogue, cordial, decongestant, emmenagogue, expectorant, febrifuge, hepatic, nervine, stimulant, stomachic, sudorific, vasoconstrictor and vermifuge

Uses for Health Benefits (Indications)
  • Othershock, vertigo and faintness, asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia, tuberculosis, cholera, stimulates the gall bladder and the secretion of bile, colic, cramps, spastic colon, flatulence, rheumatism, neuralgia, muscular pains and painful periods, skin irritation, dermatitis, acne, ringworm, scabies , pruritus
  • Can be supportive in cases of nausea, indigestion, fatigue, sinusitis, congestion
  • Has been traditionally been used for stimulating the mind, supporting digestion, as a decongestant and insect repellent
  • Effective for irritable bowel syndrome (peppermint oil should be taken in enterically coated capsules), liver strengthening and regenerating properties
  • The main constituent of peppermint is menthol, a potent chemical unto itself which causes a quick physical response when inhaled or applied the the skin
  • Menthol produces a sensation of coolness which the body reacts to by producing its own warming effect, with as blood flowing to the area of application. This physical sensation is responsible for peppermint's long history of use as medicine
  • The aroma of Peppermint essential oil is strengthening, soothing and stimulating
  • It has been repeatedly studied for its effectiveness in improving concentration and mental sharpness
  • Peppermint may also help relieve congestion when inhaled, and is also commonly used for headaches and migraines by placing a drop on each temple
  • For the treatment of headaches, without side effects at the dosages used
Precaution
  • Peppermint oil is non-toxic and non-irritant in low dilutions
  • It can cause irritation to the skin and mucus membranes
  • It should be kept away from the eyes.
  • It should be avoided during pregnancy and should not be used on children under seven years of age and infants less than 30 months old
Blend With
Eucalyptus, Lavender, Marjoram, Citrus oils

Recipe
Diffuse or add to water or rub on the stomach for digestion. Rub a small amount on the temples for headaches. Place a couple drops on the tongue to improve alertness

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