What is piperita?
Piperita, along with forest mint, water mint, and spearmint, belongs to the genus Mentha of the mint family Lamiaceae. Many believed that it is a hybrid of water, mint, and spearmint. It is also called peppermint, pudina, field mint, wild mint, corn mint, and Japanese mint.
What is its history as a medicinal herb?
Piperita can be traced back to 1500 BC as an herb extensively used in cooking for its sweet and pungent aromatic qualities, as well as in herbal medicine for its medicinal properties. It has been used externally and internally for thousands of years to alleviate the symptoms of a variety of ailments. It is applied to the skin to ease pain, or used as an infusion to minimize the discomfort that comes with muscle spasms and inflamed joints.
Research shows that piperita originally came from the Mediterranean and Northern Africa. It is listed in one of the earliest Egyptian medical records, the Ebers Papyrus, as an herb which helps calm stomach problems.
What are its uses?
Piperita is popular for its antimicrobial, anti-fungal, antiseptic, and antispasmodic properties. It is also used as an antidepressant, carminative, stimulant, and tonic.
Piperita has antibacterial and cleansing properties which make it effective for addressing respiratory problems. It is commonly used as a tea to reduce the symptoms associated with indigestion, vomiting, flatulence, and heartburn. It also helps reduce the symptoms that accompany fever, colds, and cough.
Where is piperita grown?
Europe, with its temperate climate, is believed to have cultivated the plant first. The cultivation of the plant eventually spread to China, Japan, and India in Asia, as well as to other countries in North America and Africa.
What are the general health benefits of piperita?
Piperita is beneficial for the following conditions:
- Stomach pain
- Sleeping disorders
- Gall bladder problems
- Gastrointestinal disorders
Which parts of the plant are considered useful?
Piperita’s essential oil comes from the leaves, which are harvested when the oil content is at its peak. The oils are extracted from partially dried leaves through the process of steam distillation. The result is light, straw-colored oil that has a diffusive, refreshing, and minty scent.
How does piperita work to treat ailments?
- Common Cold
Piperita has antioxidant, analgesic, and antimicrobial properties.
The essential oil from the herb is used to calm the symptoms associated with the common cold like headache, cough, sore throat, sneezing, nasal congestion, and runny nose. It also helps to make the immune system stronger.
- Respiratory problems
Respiratory problems are characterized by inflamed and blocked respiratory passages that make it difficult to breathe.
Menthol is the principal active ingredient found in piperita. It helps decongest the sinuses to make it easier to breathe. It helps bring down swelling of the throat.
- Digestive problems
Piperita is a carminative agent effective for speeding up slow and problematic digestion. It also helps relieve stomach cramps, motion sickness, dyspepsia, colic, flatulence, intestinal peristalsis, nausea, bloating, and gas by calming the stomach’s inner lining. The cooling property of piperita also helps to treat ulcers.
- Menstrual cramps
Piperita relaxes the muscles. It helps reduce the pain associated with menstruation.
The menthol found in piperita has a soothing, cooling effect when you apply it on your skin. It is effective for reducing muscle pain caused by athletic injury or excessive physical activity.
Piperita also helps to reduce swelling in the joints. It is effective in alleviating toothaches, migraines, and nerve pain.
If you have a headache, you can easily soothe the pain by massaging a small amount of piperita oil on your upper sinus region or your forehead.
- Skin problems
If you are suffering from extremely dry and sensitive skin or rashes, you can dilute piperita oil with a little water and use it as a soothing wash. You can also use the mixture as an effective hair rinse to relieve both oily and dry scalp. Piperita herbal supplements are effective for alleviating bacterial infections, allergies, itchiness, and rashes.
- Lack of energy
Piperita can be used as a stimulant. It you are exhausted, you can inhale the refreshing scent of piperita and feel revitalized. As an alternative, you can take peppermint tea or use piperita oil in a candle or a diffuser.
What are the essential Ayuverdic characteristics of piperita?
Energetics of Piperita
The taste of piperita is sweet and pungent. Its energy is cooling and heating. Its quality is penetrating, dry, and light.