If one were to recommend an aromatic herb that is known for its versatile uses, peppermint oil would win hands down. The botanical name of peppermint is mentha piperita. Extracted from the herb by steam distillation, the oil of peppermint is clear with a slight tinge of yellow. Its main constituent is menthol, which imparts the famous heady, minty aroma and the remarkable “cooling sensation,” when tasted or touched.
by Gaye Levy
Peppermint essential oil is so useful that is it comes as no surprise that even folks that are not well versed in the use of essential oils will have a bottle in their first aid kit. In my own case, peppermint oil was added to my collection in the '80s when I started suffering debilitating migraine headaches. Thankfully, the headaches are gone, but peppermint essential oil remains a core component in my medicine cabinet.
There are many ways to use peppermint essential oil: topically either neat or mixed with a carrier oil, internally as a tea or as an addition to water, or aromatically in a diffuser or in a steaming bowl of water. Peppermint oil may also be ingested provided it is what is called therapeutic grade. You will know this by the supplement information on the label.
WHAT IS PEPPERMINT?
First and foremost, peppermint is a prolific garden plant that …
There are some risks in using too much peppermint oil, including allergic reaction, heartburn, and headaches. Basically, the same rules apply to using peppermint oil as to any other alternative supplement or dietary change; speak to a doctor, and if you don’t consult a professional, start with small topical doses or skin patch tests to see how it affects your system.