How This Helps

The active components of peppermint oil are known to act on the muscle wall of the gastrointestinal tract. Menthol, menthone, cineol, and other volatile oils in peppermint oil relax the smooth muscles of the intestines owing to their antagonistic action on the calcium channels of the gut. [1] 

Science and Research

Peppermint is one of the oldest traditional medicines and also one of the popular over-the-counter medicines for gastrointestinal troubles. A cross between watermint and spearmint, peppermint is a small perennial plant grown in various regions all over the world. Peppermint oil used for irritable bowel syndrome is extracted from the stem, leaves, and flowers of the plant. An antispasmodic and carminative (preventing formation or facilitating expulsion of gas) by nature, peppermint oil has good therapeutic action in irritable bowel syndrome.

Peppermint health benefits

Health Benefits

- Packed With Conventional Nutrients

Peppermint delivers a broad assortment of traditional nutrients. Peppermint is a fantastic source of manganese, copper, and vitamin C. Vitamin C appears to play a part in decreasing esophageal cancer risk. It's the major water-soluble antioxidant within the body is required to reduce levels of free radicals that can harm cells. A number of studies have demonstrated a connection between increased vitamin C consumption and a decreased risk for colon cancer, possibly by up to 40%, although other studies have demonstrated that vitamin C intake can help decrease the incidence of colon cancer.

- Peppermint helps the digestive system

Medical research and randomized controlled trials have shown the capacity of peppermint oil to relieve some of the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, including colonic muscle spasms, indigestion, and dyspepsia. These healing properties of peppermint are seemingly linked to its smooth muscle relaxing capability. When the smooth muscles surrounding the gut are relaxed, there is less prospect of spasm and the perspiration that may accompany it. The menthol inside peppermint might be an integral reason for the bowel-comforting effect.

- Anti-Cancer Agent

Peppermint has benefits other than the digestive system. Perillyl alcohol is a phytonutrient abundant in peppermint oil. This phytonutrient was proven to halt the growth of mammary, pancreatic, and liver tumors. Research has shown to protect against cancer formation in the colon, colon, and lungs. These animal-based research have yet to be matched with both sound human studies, however.

- Anti-Microbial Oil

The peppermint essential oil also prevents the development of several diverse bacteria. It's also be utilized to inhibit the growth of certain types of fungus also.

- May help respiratory health

Peppermint comprises the substance rosmarinic acid, which has several activities that are beneficial in asthma. Its antioxidant abilities neutralize free radicals, rosmarinic acid was demonstrated to block the creation of pro-inflammatory compounds, such as leukotrienes. Additionally, it encourages cells to produce compounds called prostacyclins that keep the airways open for simple breathing. Extracts of peppermint also have been proven to help relieve the nasal symptoms of allergic rhinitis (colds associated with allergy).

See: Foods & Herbs For Kidneys Blood Cleanser & Purifier

Peppermint oil benefits for IBS

Peppermint oil also reduces intestinal hypermotility and intragastric pressure mediated by the transient receptor potential channels. This in turn relieves symptoms like diarrhea with a reduction in stool frequency, the passage of mucus and gas, abdominal distension, and flatulence in irritable bowel syndrome. Menthol also shows an analgesic and anesthetic action on the central and peripheral nervous system relieving the chief symptoms of abdominal cramps, pain before and during defecation, and a feeling of incomplete evacuation following defecation. [2] Peppermint oil has been found to alleviate these symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome without adverse reactions, making it safe for consumption.

The other active ingredients found chiefly in the leaves of the peppermint plant are phenolic constituents like rosmarinic acid, and several flavonoids like eriocitrin, luteolin, and hesperidin. [3] These elements possess a strong antimicrobial and antiviral action preventing secondary gastrointestinal infection common in patients with irritable bowel syndrome. The immunomodulatory and chemopreventive properties of peppermint oil alter the disease process of irritable bowel syndrome producing substantial relief of all the symptoms. [4] 

Peppermint oil with its therapeutic properties has also been effective in improving the psychological component of depression and anxiety associated with IBS, making the overall quality of life better.

See: IBS diet plan

How to use it

There are many ways to enjoy peppermint.

- For a fast and easy salad, combine fennel, onions, oranges, and mint leaves.

- Toss cooked khichuri with chopped mint leaves, plain yogurt, garlic, and cayenne.

- Fresh mint tea can help soothe your stomach and your nerves.

- Give fruit salad a distinctive perk by adding some fresh mint leaves into it.

- Add chopped mint leaves into gazpacho or other soups that contain tomatoes.

See: Ayurvedic Diet

References

1. Peppermint oil for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Khanna R, MacDonald JK, Levesque BG. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2014 Jul;48(6):505-12. DOI: 10.1097/MCG.0b013e3182a88357. Review.

2. A review of the bioactivity and potential health benefits of peppermint tea (Mentha piperita L.). McKay DL, Blumberg JB. Phytother Res. 2006 Aug;20(8):619-33. Review.

3. Pharmacology and preclinical pharmacokinetics of peppermint oil. Grigoleit HG, Grigoleit P. Phytomedicine. 2005 Aug;12(8):612-6. Review.

4. Peppermint oil (Mintoil) in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome: a prospective double-blind placebo-controlled randomized trial. Cappello G, Spezzaferro M, Grossi L, Manzoli L, Marzio L. Dig Liver Dis. 2007 Jun;39(6):530-6. Epub 2007 Apr 8.

5. Ensminger AH, Esminger M. K. J. e. al. Food for Health: A Nutrition Encyclopedia. Clovis, California: Pegus Press; 1986. 1986. PMID:15210.

6. Fortin, Francois, Editorial Director. The Visual Foods Encyclopedia. Macmillan, New York. 1996.

7. Edris AE, Farrag ES. Antifungal activity of peppermint & sweet basil essential oils and their major aroma constituents on some plant pathogenic fungi from the vapor phase. Nahrung 2003 Apr; 47(2):117-21. 2003.

8. Ensminger AH, Ensminger, ME, Kondale JE, Robson JRK. Foods & Nutrition Encyclopedia. Pegus Press, Clovis, California. 1983.

9. Grieve M. A Modern Herbal. Dover Publications, New York. 1971.

10. Wood, Rebecca. The Whole Foods Encyclopedia. New York, NY: Prentice-Hall Press; 1988. 1988. PMID:15220.

See: Acupuncture and Moxibustion to Control IBS

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