Peppermint essential oil has traditionally been used to aid digestion, help clear the sinuses and to reduce fever. The key constituent, menthol, is responsible for the cooling sensation we feel when using peppermint topically.
Some of the ways we use peppermint around the home:
💧 Diffused with lemon in our school room to create a focussed and uplifting environment 🏋🏻♀️ Applied to the skin to produce a cooling sensation, particularly before exercise
🤢 Applied to the tummy to help ease nausea, menstrual pain or flatulence 🤕 Inhaled for tension relief, clarity and relief of headache symptoms 🦵 Used topically to help stimulate circulation 🍮 Added to cooking and DIY cleaning products
🌱 With lemongrass and rosemary in our plant spray
Peppermint and the key constituents of peppermint have been studied extensively in human and animal models. Here are some PubMed study numbers if you want to take a closer look:
💚 A clicnical trial with nasal application of peppermint oil to reduce intensity and frequency of headaches. (See: PubMed 31404204)
💚 An extensive overview of a number of oils (including peppermint) for their antimicrobial properties. (See: PubMed 31195752)
💚 A study looking at the use of menthol to assist with strenuous performance in hot environments. (See: PubMed 29629974 and 27858306)
💚 Drawing on 31 studies, this paper discusses the role and mechanism of action of menthol in topical analgesic products. (See: PubMed 29524352)
💚 A look at the insecticidal properties of some essential oils, including peppermint. (See: PubMed 31837609)
And so many more! Just head to PubMed.gov and search for “peppermint”, “mentha piperita” or “menthol”.
Safety reminder: oils that are rich in menthol should not be used on the chest and head area in children under 3.