Mint, popularly known as pudina in India, is an aromatic herb widely used in variety of cuisines worldwide. Known for their warm and fresh aroma, mint leaves are used to add an extra zing to tea and beverages, as a flavoring and garnishing agent for curries and for preparing tempting condiments like mint-flavored yogurt (raita) or mint chutney.
Mint oil is an important ingredient in aromatherapy, cosmetics, perfumes and toothpastes. In addition to the amazing aroma and flavor, mint is popular for its medicinal qualities, considered since ancient times, to be diuretic, carminative (gas relieving), anti-bacterial, anti-pruritic (anti-itch) and decongestant in action.
Mint finds an important place in a number of home remedies for treating various ailments the natural way. Some of them are as follows:
Mint for digestion
The carminative action of mint helps relieve gas, bloating, indigestion and acidity. Regular use of mint in your daily diet helps eliminate toxins from your system. Consuming mint tea or chewing 4-5 mint leaves after meals facilitates sound digestion. Condiments like mint raita or chutney can be great add-ons for your meals. Mint juice is an appetizer and also helps alleviate stomach pain. You can try 2 teaspoons of mint tea as a home remedy for infant colic.
Mint for asthma and cold
Pudina/mint is known for its strong aroma (which can help clear nasal blockage) and expectorant action (for reducing phlegm). Inhalation of steam prepared by adding a few drops of mint oil to water can relieve nasal congestion and asthma. Tea prepared by adding a few leaves of mint and basil (tulsi), along with a piece of ginger is an effective home remedy for sore throat.
Mint for tooth decay and bad breath
Chewing 4-5 mint leaves daily is a remedial measure for tooth decay. It also acts as a mouth freshener and alleviates the problem of bad breath. Mint oil is an important element of dental care products like tooth pastes and mouth fresheners. Mint chewing gums are a popularly used aid for bad breath.
Mint for skin problems
Mint is useful for various skin problems like acne, blackheads, under-eye circles and dry skin. Dabbing a drop of mint-based toothpaste on your pimples overnight can reduce them in size. A skin toner can be made by boiling a few leaves of mint in a cup of water and it can be used to wipe your face daily, for reducing open pores and blackheads. Cream infused with mint oil can help counter dry skin problem. Mint leaves paste can be applied to under-eye circles to get rid of them. This paste has skin-lightening properties.
Mint for insect bites
The anti-inflammatory and anti-pruritic properties of mint make it effective for healing insect bites and stings. You can just crush a few leaves of mint and dab them over the affected region to soothe the stinging pain and itching. Alternatively, you can apply some mint oil over the spot.
Mint for obesity
Mint tea and chutney can help you get rid of obesity in a natural way, as they stimulate the digestive enzymes and facilitate fat-burning process.
Mint for stress and headache
Application of mint oil to your temples can help you get rid of stress, fatigue and headache, as it has a soothing effect. Even the inhalation of mint vapor can do the trick, as it acts as a natural stimulant. Mint oil is also an important ingredient of pain balms, on account of its cooling effect, which helps provide immediate pain relief due to numbing action.
Mint for blood pressure
A teaspoon of dried mint leaves, consumed daily in the powdered form can help lower your blood pressure. Mint tea is also beneficial as a home remedy for hypertension.
Mint for morning sickness
Mint juice with lemon juice, 1 teaspoon each, taken with a tablespoon of sugar thrice a day, makes a simple and effective home remedy for morning sickness.
Mint for menstrual pain
A cup of hot mint tea can do wonders for menstrual cramps and pain, because it has an anti-spasmodic action and soothes the muscles of the uterus for effective pain relief.
Additionally, mint oil has the ability to ward off insects like ants, wasps, mosquitoes and cockroaches and can be used as a non-toxic, eco-friendly insecticide. Planting mint in your home can be an effective way to get rid of insects and mosquitoes. You can place a few teabags of mint tea in the ant-infested areas.