Mint leaves (Mentha cordifolia) have numerous health benefits and are a great breath freshener (all those mints we love). Mint is considered one of the essential herbs in Ayurveda. Due to its various advantages, it’s a must-have herb for every home. It can help you fight stress, anxiety and depression and is also suitable for headaches and insomnia. It helps to boost your brain power, improve digestion and much more. Such a tiny herb but works like a wonder. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, regularly drinking peppermint tea may help lower blood pressure; peppermint is just another member of the mint family. However, the evidence is still in its early stages, but the experiment yielded more positive results. Hence, it is proven why mint is considered a valuable herb in Ayurveda.
Now, let’s dive into the list of medicinal benefits of mint that are extremely useful to humanity.
1. Assists in digestion
It is high in antioxidants and phytonutrients, which help your stomach’s digestive process. The menthol in mint aids digestion by acting on the stomach’s smooth muscles. Mint stimulates the salivary glands and the glands that produce digestive enzymes. As a result, we have better digestion. Fill a glass with warm water and a few fresh mint leaves. Take a few moments to relax and enjoy a cup of mint tea to help with stomach pain and indigestion. Several studies have shown that peppermint oil with meals helps food pass through the stomach faster, which may alleviate symptoms of this type of indigestion.
2. Relieves headaches and nausea
A soothing mint scent can be used to treat nausea. The aroma of mint oil or fresh mint leaves helps to relieve or reduce nausea. Headaches will be relieved when applied topically.
3. Treats respiratory system disorders
Mint has a strong aroma that opens the airways and allows for more relaxed breathing. It is also an expectorant, which aids in the expulsion of phlegm, allowing the patient to recover more quickly. Its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties help in the relief of respiratory tract inflammation. If you cough, put one drop of mint extract in a cup of warm water and inhale the fumes while exhaling the steam through your nose. Mint can help people with asthma by providing relaxation and relieving breathing problems.
4. Helps you achieve glowing and acne-free skin
Mint has pitta-calming properties and soothes and calms itchy and infected skin. It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that are beneficial to acne-prone skin. Mint can be found in cleansers, toners, and some lip balms. Mint contains powerful antioxidants that give the skin a natural glow and rehydrate dull and dry skin. Mint has a high salicylic acid content, which helps prevent pimples, blemishes, and even blackheads. Mint contains compounds that aid in the shedding of dull, dry skin. It helps prevent pore clogging, resulting in acne-free skin. When used as a face mask, mint juice is excellent. Mint can also help with mosquito bites.
5. Oral hygiene
It is probably the most well-known advantage of mint leaves. Mint leaves are antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. As a result, they are beneficial to your oral health. Mint kills bacteria in the mouth, preventing tooth decay, combats bad breath, and naturally cleans your tongue and teeth. Chewing mint regularly will keep your breath fresh because of its ability to override germs and inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria in the mouth.
6. Morning sickness in pregnant women
It is an excellent remedy for expectant mothers because of its effects on the stomach. It alleviates morning sickness and nausea by activating digestive enzymes. Eating a few mint leaves or smelling the crushed leaves every morning can help expectant mothers get through this difficult time. Mothers should avoid taking this after the baby is born because it affects lactation; however, in Ayurveda, a special tincture called “ark pudina” increases lactation in nursing mothers.
7. Immune system booster
Mint leaves are high in calcium, phosphorus, vitamins C, D, and E, and trace amounts of the vitamin B complex. These compounds strengthen the body’s immune system and resist infections and inflammation.
8. Relieves from depression and stress
Mint extract is used in aromatherapy to relieve stress and rejuvenate the mind. Breathing in mint aroma helps relax the body and calm the mind, reducing anxiety. It causes a small amount of serotonin to be released in the brain, which aids in the treatment of depression. If you’re feeling down, add some mint leaves or mint extract to your bath water, or use the mint extract in a vaporiser. According to a NASA-funded study, during a stressful commute, volunteers who smelled peppermint reduced their anxiety and fatigue levels by about 20%.
9. Aids in the treatment of cancer
Mint contains a potent phytochemical that can help prevent various types of cancer. Its human benefits in this area are still being researched.
10. Helps in losing weight
Mint, in addition to its numerous health benefits, can aid in your efforts to lose weight healthily! If you enjoy peppermint tea, try alternating it with a green tea drink, as both aid digestion and thus help you burn more calories. Mint is a stimulant that stimulates the digestive system to aid in the absorption of nutrients from food and the breakdown of fat into usable energy. It is because it contains a high number of antioxidants that help break down fat cells, thus reducing the size of your waistline. Mint tea also allows you to lose weight. The thermogenic effect of mint tea increases your body temperature and basal metabolic rate (BMR), further aiding in your weight loss plan. As a result, by including mint in your diet, you are increasing the amount of fat consumed and used rather than stored contributing to weight gain!
11. A soothing herb that reduces blood pressure
It is a cooling and calming herb in Ayurveda that lowers your blood pressure as the potassium content of mint leaves aids blood pressure reduction and pulse rate regulation. Hence, regularly consuming mint tea can help you achieve a healthy lifestyle.
Significance of Ayurveda
In today’s world, we are surrounded by stress, so much so that it has become a part of our life. This stress affects us both physically and mentally. So, if you want to treat anxiety and depression naturally, mint should be your go-to herb.
At Ayurveda Awareness Centre, we believe that our minds and bodies require nourishment and proper foods. So, begin enhancing your diet with Ayurveda by following our course “Three types of foods and how they influence the mind- Eating foods for peace,” and you’ll understand the significant health benefits of certain foods. This four-week live course delves into various aspects of diet and nutrition, contributing to our overall health. This course will focus on foods that are beneficial to your health and let you achieve inner peace. Avoid eating foods that cause agitation or lethargy.
The “Three types of foods and how they influence the mind- Eating foods for peace” course is for those who want to make conscious life choices in terms of diet and lifestyle principles, learn the effects of food on the mind and many more. You can connect, learn, and discuss more here online. If you want to join the sessions with AAC, you can start small, take one step at a time, and build a lifelong relationship with us!