Mint, the oldest and the most widely grown herb around the world is scientifically called Mentha. Mint has over two dozen species and hundreds of varieties which are grown all over the world. Mint is an aromatic, perennial herb which is available in various forms. Since its origin, mint has been used as a medicinal herb to treat stomach aches and chest pains. Mint, even today, is used for its medicinal properties as well as its flavor.
Mint leaves can be used in fresh form or dried form. Fresh mint leaves must usually be used immediately or they can be stored in plastic bags in refrigerators for use later. The mint leaves can even be frozen for use later. Dried mint leaves must always be stored in air-tight containers. Mint leaves are used in various cuisines in several dishes as their ingredient. The mint leaves add a warm, fresh, aromatic and sweet flavor to the dish. Mint also is used in the following as an ingredient.
- Ice Creams
- Chewing Gum
- Breath Fresheners
What does Mint contain?
Mint, the healthiest herb, is rich in the basic nutrients. It contains
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
How Mint Leaves Keep One Healthy?
Mint is perhaps the healthiest herb available. There are many health benefits of mint. Mint leaves can keep one healthy in the most natural manner.
- Fights Indigestion- Mint contains anti-oxidants and phyto-nutrients that help in fighting indigestion. The menthol which is present in mint helps the digestive enzymes for digestion. Mint also calms stomach cramps. The use of mint leaves also help in fighting acidity and flatulence. Mint is prescribed to patients who suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
- Relieves cough and cold- The smell of mint is very strong and can open up nasal passages for relaxed breathing. Mint has anti- bacterial and anti- inflammatory properties that help to relieve inflammation in the respiratory tracts. Mint is also an expectorant and helps relieving productive cough.
- Gives acne free skin- Mint has anti- inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that sooth and cam itchy skin. It helps to get acne free skin. It is used in many toners and cleansers that are used on the skin. The antioxidants in mint rehydrate the skin and eave it glowing. Salicylic acid which is present in mint in large quantities helps to prevent pimples, blemishes and blackheads.
- Fight oral infections- Mint leaves with their anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties is very good for oral health. The use of mint fights bad breath, tooth decay and keeps the tongue and teeth clean. The mint kills bacteria in the mouth and thus helps fight dental diseases.
- Boosts Immunity- Mint contains calcium, phosphorous, vitamin C, D and E which work to improve the body’s immune system and prevents infections.
- Beats stress and depression- Mint extracts are used to beat stress and depression. Mint extracts rejuvenate the mind by relaxing the mind and body. Mint when used releases a small amount of serotonin in the brain that helps to fight depression.
- Fights cancer- Mint contains a phyto- chemical called perillyl alcohol. This phyto- nutrient prevents and fights skin cancer, lung cancer and colon cancer.
- Helps in weight loss- Mint is a great stimulant. It stimulates the digestive enzymes to absorb nutrients from food and consume fat and convert these to usable energy. This way fat gets consumed and does not get stored in the body.
- Fights allergies- Mint contains an anti-oxidant called rosmarinic acid which relieves allergy symptoms.
- Relieves Asthma- Mint relieves from asthma symptoms. It acts a great relaxant and helps to overcome congestion. Most asthma patients are prescribed to take mint regularly.
Though mint is considered the best and the healthiest herb, one must use it with precaution. Over- consumption of mint may be toxic and lead to heath problems. In addition, if someone is already allergic to other natural herbs, then using mint should be avoided. Any patient who suffers from the problem of gall-stones must avoid taking mint.