Mint leaves, aka pudina, are a herb known for their freshness and aroma. The health benefits of mint have been embraced since long back, which is why the herb is found in almost every Indian household, even today. The several varieties of mint leaves are packed with antioxidants. So, much like ashwagandha, mint leaves can help strengthen immunity and reduce stress and anxiety. Besides taking advantage of the health benefits of mint and its cooling effects, the herb is also used as a garnishing element for various cuisines. So, be it savory or sweet, mint is the thing you need to add a refreshing touch to your meals.
The health benefits of mint add nutritional value to your food and its flavor, a marvelous cooling effect. What more can a tiny herb do, right? So, now you must be curious to understand what exactly are the benefits of mint. Well, without wasting much of your time, this article will break down some of the core health benefits of mint but first, let us look at the nutritional profile of mint.
Nutritional Profile of Mint
Mint leaves benefits for health come from the plethora of antioxidants and phytonutrients they contain. In addition, mint also has vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B12, other B-complex vitamins, calcium, phosphorous, along with terrific anti-bacterial properties. Among other natural and therapeutic herbs, mint benefits hemoglobin levels and improves brain function quite exceptionally as it is one of the richest sources of potassium, iron, and manganese. In addition to this, mint leaves are low in calories and have minimal fat and protein. Therefore, mint leaves are a convenient food for various weight loss programs.
Benefits of Mint
Nowadays, people have been raving about herbal teas like green tea or chamomile tea to ace a nutritional lifestyle. Mint tea benefits also find a reputable place under this trend. Because of the health benefits of mint leaves, various uses of mint leaves like mint tea are being popularised. Not only do mint leaves add value to health, nutrition, and lifestyle, but they are also scientifically safe. That said, let us look at the multiple benefits of mint.
1. Can Treat Digestion
Known as a fantastic appetizer, mint benefits your gut system in many ways. It can accelerate the smooth functioning of the digestive system as it releases digestive enzymes. Also, mint oil has antiseptic and antibacterial properties to ease indigestion, acidity and fight stomach infections. Not only this, but mint also acts as an anti-spasmodic remedy as it contains natural methanol.
2. Treats Bowel Irritation
Irritable bowel syndrome is a common digestive disorder. It can give rise to indigestion, gas, constipation, bloating, stomach pain, and diarrhea. Menthol, which is an active compound of mint, leaves a soothing impact on the digestive muscles. So, though it may not be a sure shot solution, the benefits of mint can work to soothe irritable bowel syndrome.
3. Contains Skincare Properties
Mint is an age-old remedy to treat skin-related issues like acne, dark spots, and scar. Much like other effective natural remedies like ashwagandha benefits for skin care, the powerful antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-fungal benefits of mint effectively rescue your skin from acne. Mint leaves for dark spots on the face are also quite popular as mint may reduce the inflammation and redness associated with acne outbreaks. They contain high amounts of natural salicylic acid and vitamin A, which can regulate sebum and oil secretion in the skin and help cure acne.
Mint leaves for the skin helps to treat as well as prevent acne. Moreover, the goodness of menthol and natural antioxidants present in mint leaves are work as a wonderful natural cleanser, toner, astringent, and moisturizer for the skin. Thus, mint can soothe red or irritated skin as it tones and softens it.
4. Relieves Respiratory Problems
To take advantages or benefits of leaves are highly recommended for breathing problems such as asthma as they act as a sound relaxant and relieve chest congestion. Regular consumption of mint leaves can calm chronic asthmatic patients. In addition, mint is also known to help people get rid of the stuffed nose. So, menthol can make breathing easier and relieve irritation caused by a chronic dry cough.
5. May Alleviate Stress And Depression
Many kinds of aromatherapies consider mint an essential part. That’s so because the refreshing and overpowering smell can combat stress and refresh the mind. When a person smells a mint aroma, they are certainly able to feel ease in breathing as their mind instantly calms. So, like other powerful herbs for anxiety, mint leaves may show instant results. You can add mint oil to your tea, use the mint extract through a vaporizer or use mint essential oil for a bath taking advantage of the benefits of mint for immediate stress relief.
6. Mint For Oral Care
When you gobble up any meal with onions, the next thing you do is pop up some chewing gum. What if you get to know there is something absolutely nutritious and natural to get you rid of that bad mouth odor? Yes, one of the most prominent mint benefits includes providing a fresh breath. Chewing mint can help freshen your breath immediately due to the existence of germicidal properties. Mint leaves extract can even clean and clear the plaque deposition on teeth. You must have seen several brands promoting menthol containing toothpaste, mouthwash, and chewing gums. That’s so because menthol can stop oral bacterial growth and keep your oral cavity clean.
7. May Improve Cognitive Abilities
Mint leaves can be served creatively as a tonic for the brain. According to several studies, eating mint may improve alertness, reaction time, and cognitive functions. Thus, much like ayurvedic roushadhi like shilajit, mint benefits boost memory and improve mental alertness.
8. May Boost Overall Immune Function
Mint benefits the overall immune function as it is jampacked with vitamins and antioxidants. The plant-based vitamins enrich a balanced diet and aid in protecting your cells from wear and tear. Also, mint leaves can prevent tumor build-up by hampering with some enzymes.
9. Mint For Hair
Mint leaves extract is also an excellent source of carotene and antioxidants that have the ability to stimulate hair growth and prevent hair fall. The benefits of mint also involve antimicrobial and antifungal properties used to ward off dandruff and other hair problems. To take the benefits of mint leaves, crush them to prepare a paste and add a few drops of lemon. Apply this on the hair scalp and allow it to sit to stay for 30-40 minutes, and then rinse the hair well with cold water.
10. May Aid Weight Loss
Mint leaves benefits the healthy weight loss strategy. Regular mint leaves intake helps promote digestion and boost metabolism that ultimately contribute to a well-planned weight loss program. Mint tea is another idea for using mint to prepare a refreshing and calorie-free beverage that promotes weight loss.
Side Effects of Mint
Mint leaves are commonly safe for consumption, and the above-given benefits of mint are undoubtedly true. However, some people with gastroesophageal reflux problems should try to eliminate mint leaves consumption as it may cause gut irritation. Also, menthol oil is contraindicated among children for topical use as it may cause breathing complications.
With science backing proof, we can conclude that mint is an amazing herb with a plethora of health benefits. Full of antioxidants, vitamins, iron, etc., the benefits of mint may help combat several ailments and thus can enrich your daily diet. Even if you do not have any health concerns, you can take advantage of the benefits of mint to improve your immune system and to fancy a refreshing breath!
NOTE – This article was originally published in naturesutra and can be viewed here
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