Thursday, August 13, 2009

Health Benefits of Mint

The health benefits of mint include the following:

Digestion: Mint is a strong diuretic and thus, helping to eliminate the toxins from the body. It is an appetizer and promotes digestion. Dried mint leaves, boiled in water, form a strong concoction that helps in soothing the digestive tract in case of indigestion and to ease the severity of stomachaches in case of inflammation. Drinking herbal mint tea reduces irritated bowel syndromes and cleanses the stomach. When included in the diet on a regular basis, mint reduces the growth of bacteria and fungus in the body.

Nausea & Headache: The strong and refreshing aroma of mint is an excellent and quick remedy for nausea. Just smelling the oil of mint or crushed fresh mint leaves or using any product with mint flavor, will rid one of the nausea and headache.

Respiratory Disorders: The strong aroma of mint is very effective in opening up congestion of nose, throat, bronchi and lungs, giving relief in respiratory disorders resulting from asthma, cold etc. As it cools and soothes throat, nose and other respiratory channels, it gives relief in cough too. Many balms are based on this property of mint. Regular use of mint is very beneficial for asthma patients, as it is a relaxant and gives relief in congestion. But, over dosage may irritate as well.

Skin Care, (pimples,burns and insect bites): While mint oil is an anti septic and anti pruritic, mint juice is an excellent skin cleanser. It soothes skin, cures infections, itching etc., and is also good for pimples. Its anti pruritic properties can be used for treating bites of insects like mosquitoes, honey-bees, hornets, wasps, gnats etc. Mint juice can be applied on burns to heal and soothe them.

Oral Care: This is a well known property of mint. Being a germicidal and breathe freshener, it takes care of dental hygiene by inhibiting harmful bacterial growth inside mouth and by cleaning tongue and teeth. Crushed mint leaves help in whitening teeth.

Cancer: Current researches indicate mint as having anti-cancer properties. The phytonutrient, called perillyl alcohol, in mint is believed to prevent colon, skin and lung cancer.

Relaxant: Inhaling essential oil of mint provides a sense of calm and thus, helps one relax the mind.

Other Benefits: Besides its wide industrial use in food stuffs such as ice-creams, chocolates etc., alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, cosmetics, medicines, inhalers and mouth and breathe fresheners, it is used as a condiment and decorative item in culinary world-wide. Menthol present in mint makes it an important component of many medicines and drugs. Drinks and food-stuffs containing mint cools you off in summer. One more peculiar property which is very much in contrary to its cooling and soothing effects is that it induces sweating if consumed in fever, thereby curing it. It is also beneficial in rheumatism.

Try out this Mint Chutney.

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