Peppermint has the strongest medicinal properties in the Mint family. It’s an excellent carminative with potent relaxing effects on the digestive system.
Peppermint’s uses are best when addressing flatulence, intestinal colic, nausea, vomiting and motion sickness. The volatile oils in Peppermint are what’s responsible for the anasthesising effect on the stomach. Therefore, keeping the tea covered while it’s brewing, is essential in stopping these oils evaporating.
It’s also excellent as a gargle for laryngitis and bad breath.
Strong Peppermint tea compresses can be used in a variety of ways. As a warm compress, it’s good for back pain, joint inflammation, lung infection, nerve pain and sinusitis.
As a cold application, Peppermint has a dramatic cooling effect which is best for headaches, fever, itching, hives and bruises. If it’s a whole body problem like chicken pox, a peppermint bath will feel like heaven.
Chest congested? How about a Peppermint tea steam inhale. (You know, the one where you cover your head and bowl completely with a towel.) This is still the best, time honoured way to obtain relief from chest and sinus congestion. It has a side benefit of relieving nausea as well.
Another little known use for cold peppermint tea, is as a face wash. It’s cooling, soothing and firming on the skin. It’s astringent properties make it a wonderful choice to give your skin a refreshing, and youthful feel.
Peppermint is a herbaceous perennial that grows up to 1 metre in height. Grow in full sun or partial shade in moist but well-drained soil and can be propagated by division, stem cuttings, root cuttings and layering. It benefits from an annual root pruning. It grows and spreads quickly and can be grown fairly well indoors.