Mint is a popular flavoring in many recipes and beverages. It is also beneficial to one's health and wellness as an herbal supplement. Mentha (better known as mint, from the greek word Míntha) is a genus of plants in the family Lamiaceae,- species Mentha spicata.
Mint has many positive properties that can treat a host of issues in the human body. People have become very creative in harvesting its leaves and finding many ways to use this helpful herb. Whether a sprig of mint is added to a drink, the leaves are chewed, or its used in other forms, it should be a standard in any kitchen.
Originating in Europe, mint has now been naturalized in North America. It can be found throughout the United States and Canada. Many people choose to grow their own mint in their gardens, green houses, and in the home. Mint also grows naturally near streams, creeks, rivers, and other damp places.
Mint has many benefits when consumed as a supplement. It aids the digestive system as it boosts action in the salivary glands, soothes the stomach during bouts of indigestion, and can provide relief for nausea as well. It can be taken in various forms, such as in oil form as a few drops are ingested or in a mint tea to produce fast, effective results.
Many a victim of headaches has found relief by applying a mint balm to the forehead. It is especially effective in treating the throbbing pain that is accompanied by a sinus headache when rubbed around the nose and temples. The scent is soothing as well as the anti-inflammatory properties of the herb.
While there is no magical cure for the cold and flu, mint has proven to be beneficial in alleviating the congestion that accompanies many respiratory problems. People suffering from the unwelcome symptoms that come with bronchitis, the flu, and any issue with the respiratory tract can often have their airways cleared by the powerful aroma of mint. Mint is an alternative ingredient in inhalers, providing a cooling effect that reduces inflammation and soothes as well. It can be useful for those who suffer from asthma and may help them to manage their condition.
When feeling down or exhausted, mint can act as a stimulant. It can be taken in many different forms, whether balms and essential oils are rubbed on the skin, in a vapor mist, or capsule form. Even a mint cup of tea can give a person a pick-me-up in a time of need.
Mint acts as a stimulant for the digestive system, kicking enzymes into action and promoting optimal functioning of the body's metabolism. Less fat is stored and more calories are burned by the simple addition of mint to one's diet. When combined with more physical activity and wise eating choices, it can make it easier to maintain an ideal body weight.
Mint has been linked to better cognitive functioning with aging. It would appear its ability to be a stimulant also benefits mental processes. It seems taking mint on a regular basis can assist a person in remaining mentally sharp and holding on to memories at a time when they slip away with the natural aging process.
Mint is beneficial as a skin treatment. The oils can be applied to the skin and also mint juice. Mint is a powerful yet gentle cleanser that is effective in clearing up acne and ridding the skin of bacteria that leads to infection. It also provides relief from irritations on the skin caused by rashes, stings, and scratches.
(Allen, A.P. and Smith, A.P. A Review of the Evidence that Chewing Gum Affects Stress, Alertness and Cognition. Journal of Behavioral and Neuroscience Research 2011;9(1)7-23)
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