Peppermint Brings Relief
by Debi Pearl of No Greater Joy Ministries
Almost every family uses the herb peppermint simply because it tastes good. Most people would assume, anything that tastes that good couldn’t be something that heals, but they’re wrong.
Peppermint is loaded with volatile oils that act as a mild anesthetic to the stomach wall, causing the nauseated person to not feel his discomfort so intensely. It also has a substance that checks the formation of gas and helps dispel gas that has already formed by relaxing the muscles of the digestive system and stimulating bile and digestive juices to flow. This is why restaurants have the tradition of providing mints at the end of meals. Peppermint’s ability to relax the smooth muscles makes it a nervine herb, thus useful in herbal combinations for easing anxiety and tension.
All this means, a cup of peppermint tea can help bring relief from morning sickness, menstrual cramps, baby’s colic, stomach flu, stomach gas and cramps, ulcerative condition of the bowels, upset stomach due to tension, etc. And stomach pain is not all that it relieves. Peppermint has warming properties that can be used to raise the body’s temperature, to encourage sweating, causing it to be used in treatment of fevers, colds, and influenza. When someone in the family has a stuffy nose, I pack dried peppermint leaves into a small baby food jar, add cotton wool and a little water before I put the lid on, and set it to stay warm on the wood burning stove. We use it like the old smelling salts of bygone days. The fumes actually bring healing and relief as they open your nasal passage.
You will notice I have written only about peppermint. The other mints are nice, but they lack the strong volatile oils and therefore lack some of the healing properties.
Peppermint is sterile, so you must start with a plant, but it will spread faster than weeds. Plant it around a water spicket or ditch so it will get tall enough to harvest several times each summer. Cut before it flowers, or plant it under your clothes line and mow it down each week for the sweetest smelling clothes and yard anywhere.
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