Essential oils are becoming increasingly popular for their therapeutic uses. Peppermint essential oil, with its invigorating aroma, has been known to possess a variety of health benefits.
Oral Health Benefits
Regular use of peppermint oil could protect your teeth and gums from harmful infections. In 2013, researchers for the European Journal of Dentistry found that peppermint oil prevented the growth of oral bacteria, including staph and E. coli.
Improved Exercise Performance
Supplementing your workout with peppermint oil might help you to exercise longer and harder, thereby improving your fitness. Researchers for a 2013 study in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition analyzed the impact of peppermint oil on the exercise performance of a group of men.
The men performed an exercise test on a treadmill and then consumed one bottle of water enhanced with peppermint oil daily for 10 days. They completed the treadmill test again after the supplementation period, and results showed they were able to exercise longer and at a higher intensity after consuming the peppermint oil.
Relief from Nausea and Vomiting
Instead of turning to medications, you can use peppermint oil to treat symptoms such as nausea and vomiting. Scientists for a 2012 publication of The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine reviewed five studies comprised of a total of 328 subjects, and found that when inhaled, peppermint oil decreased the occurrence and intensity of nausea and vomiting. In addition, it reduced the need for medications to treat these ailments.
Using Peppermint Essential Oil For Irritable Bowel Syndrome
The research has suggested that peppermint oil could be an agent in the treatment of symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In a study in a 2014 edition of the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology, participants were given either a peppermint oil pill or a placebo. Study results indicated that the peppermint pill improved IBS symptoms more effectively than did the placebo, and also reduced abdominal pain.
Update 5/11/16: In our research into finding relief for our readers who suffer from IBS, we stumbled upon Heather Tummy Care which at the time of this writing is going for a steal at $9.49 for a bottle of 90 capsules on Amazon.com.
Antibacterial Effects of Peppermint Essential Oil
If you are feeling ill in general, peppermint oil may provide some relief. Researchers for a 2011 publication of the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine found that peppermint oil had an antibacterial effect on numerous types of bacteria. They concluded that the benefits of peppermint essential oil could be used to treat infections caused by these bacteria.
Benefits Of Improved Cognition
Peppermint oil not only makes you smarter, it will also boost your performance when you are faced with a task that requires significant mental effort.
In a 2008 study in the International Journal of Neuroscience, researchers found that peppermint oil increased alertness and improved memory. Use this effect to your advantage if you are writing a report for work or taking an exam.
Benefits Peppermint Essential Oil For Headache Relief
Peppermint essential oil could reduce the impact of a nagging headache. In a study published in 1994 in the neurology journal Cephalalgia, scientists discovered that peppermint oil, when combined with ethanol, had an analgesic effect and reduced headache sensitivity.
Study participants applied the mixture of peppermint and ethanol to their forehead and temples to achieve relief.
Headache relief is just one of the numerous documented benefits of peppermint essential oil. As the research suggests, peppermint oil can also have a therapeutic effect on patients with IBS, in addition to fighting against bacteria, improving cognition and exercise performance, and treating symptoms of nausea and vomiting. Keep in mind that this information should not take the place of advice from a licensed physician.
Consult with your healthcare provider before using peppermint essential oil, especially if you have pre-existing health conditions or concerns about potential side effects or medication interactions.