Botanical: Mentha x piperita
Country of origin / distribution: Native to southern Europe taken to the U.S.A. early in the 19th century
Part of plant used: Leaves
Other names: Balm mint.
Energy: Cooling, moisturising
Aroma /Characteristics: A grassy minty-cooling aroma with a deep balsamic sweet back note and a sweet, fresh clean dry out note.
Dosha effect: PK-, Vo
Description: A perennial herb up to 1 metre high with underground runners. The “white peppermint has green stems and leaves and the “black ” peppermint has dark green serrated leaves, purpelish stems and reddish-violet flowers.
History/ Herbal: Peppermint has been cultivated since ancient times. It is listed in the British Herbal Pharmacopoeia for internal colic, flatulence, common cold, vomiting in pregnancy, and dysmenorrhea.
Extraction: Steam distillation. Plants distilled in June contain more menthol; those distilled in September closer to flowering contain more menthone.
Chemical Const: menthol 42.8%, menthone 19.4%, sabinene hydrate 6.6%, 1.8.cineol 5.2%, neomenthol 4.2%, isomenthone 3.2%, beta-carophyllene 2.3%, menthofuran 2%, limonene 1.6%, pulegone 0.9%
Properties: acne analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antispasmodic, antiviral, asthma, bronchitis, carminative, cephalic colds, colic, cramps dermatitis. fevers, flu nausea, nervine,
Safety/ contraindications: All routes Cardiac fibrillation, G6PD deficiency. Do not apply to or near the face of infants / children. Orally Cholestasis, Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Cardiovascular: anti-inflammatory, carminative, fainting, Hypotension, vision problems associated with circulation, Increases white blood cells, lymph drainage.
Digestive; colic, cramps, diarrhoea, detoxification, hepato- pancreatic stimulant, Irritable bowel syndrome, gingivitis, liver stimulant, nausea, toothache, ulcers,
Genito – urinary Cramps, mastitis, Morning sickness, restorative during labour,
Immune: antiviral, antimicrobial, colds, flu fever, herpes, shingles.
Muscular/ Skeletal: analgesic anti-inflammatory antispasmodic
Respiratory: antibacterial, antiseptic, asthma, bronchitis, spasmodic and dry coughs, colds, decongestant, flu and fevers, sinusitis,
Skin: analgesic*, acne anti-inflammatory, dermatitis, itching, eczema,
Uses: Mind: cephalic, cleansing, clearing invigorating. Use for mental exhaustion, sudden shock and sometimes for depression.
Nervous: energizing, nervine,
* only for hot burning type bites or burns where there is no broken skin.
Other: Peppermint is used in the pharmaceutical industry for colds, coughs & digestive preparations also by the food and flavouring industry in toothpaste, lollies chewing gum, cakes, chocolate bars, chocolate frosting, mouth sprays, gargles, cigarettes, Soft drinks, alcohol, muscular rubs, soaps, detergents etc.