Peppermint oil is my oil of choice whenever I feel a bit run down or sluggish. I find that when I apply it to the back of my neck I am invigorated almost immediately.
It seems to tune up all my senses and gets me motivated to get on with my day.
I am not the only one who experiences this as peppermint has become one of the most fresh and popular oils on the market today. If you try it you will find it will stimulate your mind and body and the effects are immediate.
note: None of the information provided on this site should be used to replace that of your medical professional. See Disclaimer
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What is Peppermint Oil?
Lets start with some basic information; a brief description of where the oil comes from, what it contains and how it is obtained. The following information is provided by Bill Fifield in his book "Integrated Guide to Essential Oils & Aromatherapy".
This is a book that I highly recommend by the way.
About Peppermint Oil
Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae)
Origins: Naturalized throughout Europe and America but cultivated worldwide. The oil comes mainly from France, England, America, Russia, Bulgaria, Italy, Hungary, Morocco, and China.
Other names: brandy mint, balm mint
Description: a perennial herb with dark green serrated leaves that grows about 3 feet high.
Extraction: Essential oil by steam distillation
Botanical Part Used: the flowering herb
Principal constituents: Menthol (29-48%), menthone (20-30%), menthyl acetate (3-5%), menthofuran, limonene, pulegone, cineol, and others.
Integrated Guide to Essential Oils & Aromatherapy
by Bill Fifield (forward by Dr. Daniel Penoel)
This tasty oil comes from a flowering herb with dark green serrated leaves. It can be found worldwide.
The method used for extraction is steam distillation.
Peppermint is very versatile and has been used for various complaints over many centuries. It has been used aromatically, topically and internally; It has been used for indigestion, constipation, stress, nausea, diarrhea, headaches, sore throats, toothaches and cramps; It has been used as a flavouring agent; It has been used in soaps, detergents, cosmetics and perfumes.
note: Very efficacious. (one drop of clinical grade peppermint oil = approximately 28 cups of peppermint tea)
Peppermint also works well with other essential oils when combined in a blend to treat various conditions or for other purposes.
Peppermint oil gets it's cooling effect from menthol (29-48%), it's tissue rejuvenation qualities from menthone (20-30%) and therapeutic qualities from menthyl acetate (3-5%)
Methods of Application
- Possible skin sensitivity
- Consult your physician before using if pregnant, nursing, taking medications or have a medical condition
- Avoid your eyes, mucous membranes and sensitive skin
- Do not use on infants and young children
- Keep out of the reach of children
- Do not apply over a large area of your body to reduce fever or lower body temperature
- Aromatically - Can be inhaled or diffused into the air
- Topical - Can be applied to the skin (may require dilution with a carrier oil)
- Internal - Can be taken internally in foods or beverages
- Dilute - requires dilution with a carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil
- Sensitive Skin - Should be used with caution on delicate skin; a carrier oil may be useful
- Use for acute pain such as a burn
- Put a trace on the back of your neck, above your eyebrows or on your temples in case of headache
- Lick a trace off the back of your hand to relieve nausea
- Place one drop on a section of apple and chew it to clear a blocked sinus
- Improve your physical performance
- Repellent for mice
Improved Athletic Performance
Instant effects of peppermint essential oil on the physiological parameters and exercise performance. Pubmed.gov
Peppermint has a mixed reputation when it comes to treating acid reflux. It can be very helpful if used properly but if misused it can make the situation worse.
Most agree that taking peppermint before an acid reflux episode is beneficial but during an attack it may be better if you used another oil. (see link below for other options)
When and How to Use
- Mix a couple drops with a carrier oil like coconut oil and consume it in a gelatin capsule before eating a meal. This will allow for slower absorption so the oil can get past the stomach and enter your small intestine.
- Place a drop of oil on your tongue before or immediately after eating a meal to promote proper digestion and avoid acid reflux.
- If you are already experiencing discomfort you can try mixing the oil with some carrier oil and rubbing it on your stomach instead of consuming it internally.
If you experience a burn the first thing you should do if possible is to cool the area in some cold tap water.
Secondly, determine how serious the burn is. Anything above a first degree burn should be referred for medical attention, especially if it covers a large area. What's the difference?
Assuming your burn is not serious you can use Peppermint in a blend with other oils with Lavender being the prime ingredient. Here is your blend:
Spray the blend on your burn every 15 minutes for the first 3 or 4 hours as needed then daily after your morning shower.
- Heat Exhaustion - rub peppermint diluted 50:50 on your temples, shoulders, ears and neck to cool your body.
Cold and Flu
- Cough - rub a few drops onto your palm or into a tissue and inhale deeply through your nose & mouth.
- Sore Throat - add 1-2 drops to a cup of hot water. Sweeten it with some honey and sip slowly.
- Nasal Congestion & Nosebleed - diffuse peppermint into the air or rub a few drops into palms and inhale to clear your sinuses and ease lung congestion. If your nasal congestion is really bad, put a drop on a section of apple and chew it.
Peppermint oil has antiseptic and antimicrobial properties. As a bonus it also has antioxidant properties.
It has a minty, cool, sharp and intense scent
- Constipation - dilute 6-8 drops of peppermint oil 50:50 and massage your stomach.
- Digestion - add 2-3 drops to tea or hot water and sip slowly.
- Motion Sickness
- at the first hint of motion sickness add 1-2 drops to your drinking
water or lick it off the back of your hand and swirl it around in your
- Fresh Breath - put a few drops in a veggie cap and swallow.
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) - Peppermint oil is one of the most highly recommended natural cures for IBS. Mix 3-4 drops of pure peppermint oil, and two parts almond oil and rub it on the soles of your feet. You can also mix it with a favorite beverage or drink it as a tea with some lemon or ginger.
Lavender and Peppermint oils have also been used in combination for treating IBS.
- Shock - use only in cases of shock from an intense emotional experience not from accidents or other medical emergency. Rub 2-3 drops on your palms and breathe in deeply.
- Sleepy - peppermint oil is great to sip in water, diffuse, inhale or apply to the back of your neck to wake up and concentrate. Warning: These effect are short in duration so if you are driving it's best to pull over and take a nap.
Peppermint oil is very good for people with dry skin. When applied to your scalp Peppermint will:
- improve blood flow
- rejuvenate your hair follicles and stimulate hair growth
- increase dermal thickness, follicle number and follicle depth
- cleanse and open pores
- stimulate the flow of skin oils
- control dandruff and lice
Add a couple drops to your shampoo/conditioner.
Create a blend - 5 drops Peppermint, 5 drops Lavender Essential Oil and 2 tablespoons of warm coconut oil. Massage the blend into your scalp and leave for 15-20 minutes before washing.
For a headache or migraine pain, Peppermint Oil works very quickly and I have found it to be an absolute requirement for my medicine cabinet and travel case.
Rub a drop directly on your temples, forehead, in front of your ears and the back of your neck to obtain temporary relief. Use as necessary.
Medications for headache have been known to trigger a cycle of headaches called "Rebound Headaches". To break the cycle try a blend of Peppermint, Lavender, and Frankincense essential oils.
Peppermint oil is one of the most highly recommended natural cures for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and for this reason it may also be effective at healing hemorrhoids.
Furthermore, Peppermint has analgesic, anesthetic and anti-inflammatory properties which have a calming and numbing effect on areas of inflammation.
Mix a few drops in a 50:50 solution with a carrier oil such as fractionated coconut or aloe and coconut and apply externally (without massaging) a couple times a day.
Peppermint has analgesic, anesthetic and anti-inflammatory properties which have a calming and numbing effect on areas of inflammation.
It is well known to provide relief for pain (especially migraines), fever, stiffness and inflammation associated with arthritis.
Dilute with a carrier oil such as coconut oil and apply directly to areas of concern. For children dilute 2-3 drops 50:50 and apply to the spine and neck.
Take a warm bath with 10-15 drops of peppermint and a cup of Epsom salts.
Peppermint oil is one of the most highly recommended natural cures for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Mix 3-4 drops of pure peppermint oil, and two parts almond oil and rub it on the soles of your feet. You can also mix it with a favorite beverage or drink it as a tea with some lemon or ginger.
Lavender and Peppermint oils have also been used in combination for treating IBS.
Peppermint Oil is one of the best ways to get rid of mice. The strong smell will drive them away and is a great alternative to poisonous pesticides.
Soak some cotton balls with peppermint and place them anywhere you believe mice are entering your house. Another placement would be anywhere you find mouse droppings.
Nausea and Vomiting
Peppermint Oil will help combat nausea, vomiting, headache, diarrhea, morning sickness.
Add 1-2 drops to your drinking water/herbal tea or lick it off the back of your hand and swirl it around in your mouth.
Diffuse it in your home or rub it on your palms and inhale. You can also put a few drops on a tissue and keep it in a plastic bag in your purse to be inhaled periodically during your day.
Rub it directly on your temples, forehead and neck like you would do for a headache.
Peppermint Essential Oil has been shown to be equally effective as conventional drugs in the treatment of migraine headaches.
- Pain - Peppermint oil has
been used effectively to block channels that transmit pain signals to
your brain. Dilute 50:50 and massage around your head and neck. Works
well for headaches and bone pain.
- Arthritis & Tendinitis - take internally by placing a few drops into a veggie cap and swallowing.
- Headache - rub directly on your temples, forehead, in front of your ears and the back of your neck to obtain temporary relief.
- apply 2-3 drops of diluted peppermint oil around the outside opening
of your ear (not in the ear). In the case of children use Lavender
Essential Oil instead.
- Shingles - Try a 50:50 blend of Peppermint Essential Oil and a carrier oil taken internally (3-4 capsules) a day with food.
To maintain good respiratory health, diffuse peppermint oil, rub a few drops on your palms or add to a tissue paper and breathe in to clear your airways.
For sunburn, mix some Peppermint Oil with a carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil & apply gently to ease inflammation and cool your skin.
For cold sores, apply a single drop and repeat frequently.
Peppermint Oil contains Menthol which is a soothing agent that is
known for relieving snoring. Peppermint also has anti-inflammatory
properties which can treat inflammation of the membranes in your
nostrils, relieve nasal congestion and enable smooth air flow.
To maintain good respiratory health and to clear the sinuses making it easier to breath:
- diffuse peppermint oil in your bedroom
- put a couple drops in hot water and breathe the vapors. Exhale frequently to activate more steam
- rub a few drops on your palms and inhale
- add to a tissue paper and breathe in
- add a drop to your drinking water or a cup of tea
Add 1-2 drops of Peppermint to a cup of hot water. Sweeten it with some honey and sip slowly.
Peppermint has long been touted as an ingredient that calms upset
stomachs by assisting with digestion. It is also a natural appetite
suppressant so diffuse it in the air or put a few drops in your palms and inhale deeply.
In order to promote normal digestive and intestinal functions blend 50:50 with a carrier oil and massage on your abdomen.
Combine with Other Oils
Peppermint blends well with:
Have You Tried Peppermint Oil?
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