Mint is a perennial herb that is an invasive ground covering plant, which has many culinary uses, peppermint is also used in essential oils. Because of its invasive nature, many people grow mint in large containers so that the roots can be confined.
Most Common Varieties include:
Peppermint, Which has a strong flavour.
Spearmint has a milder flavour than Peppermint.
Apple or round leaf.
No special requirements needed other than to keep the soil moist especially if grown in containers. Divide the clumps every three years.
Sowing / Planting
Plant from root divisions 12 inches apart. Number of plants Because of it's invasive nature one plant should be enough for an average family.
Pick the leaves and shoot tips as required and just before flowering for preserving. Trim some of the stems down to ground level in midsummer to get fresh supplies in autumn.
Mint can be used as a herbal remedy for different ailments. You probably equate mint to the flavoring used in toothpaste or your chewing gum. However, mint can be used more extensively than just as a breath freshener or even as a flavoring for your cooking.
The aerial parts of the mint herb are the parts that are most used to make herbal remedies. Ailments generally include digestive disorders, colic and fatulence. Additionally, mint is often used to treat motion sickness and nausea. If you are suffering from flu or fever, mint can be used to help promote sweating to break the illness. Mint is also called bo he in Chinese herbal medicine and it used to help relieve the symptoms of liver stagnation or other digestive complaints. A mint herbal remedy is best used right after harvesting.
You can also use the mint plant’s aerial parts to prepare an inhalation, tincture, compress, or an infusion, depending upon your needs. A hot tea can be made as well and this is the easiest way to ingest mint.
An essential oil is one of the most common ways to derive benefits from mint. Peppermint oil is very popular and it contains large amounts of menthol. Peppermint oil is known for its analgesic, calming, and cooling affect on your body. This is a good remedy for treating and relieving headaches, migraines, treating fevers, and treating skin problems. This oil is considered antibacterial in nature as well, which is great for using on minor infections.
Inhaling peppermint oil can help relieve severe nasal congestion, but you do not need to do this often, because it may irritate your mucous membranes. Young children should not use peppermint oil and nursing mothers should stay away from peppermint oil, because it can reduce your milk flow.
With thirty different varieties of mint, there can be a lot of herbal remedies that can be prepared out of them. Peppermint is the preferred mint herbal remedy in the western world. In China, it is the field mint. Garden mint, or spearmint, is another very popular mint herbal remedy, more commonly used for children.
In cooking, mint can be used as flavoring for a distinctive taste. It is also used widely in desserts such as in mint chocolates. The mint that I'm most familiar with in Asian cooking used in laksa and malay cooking is called laksa leaves. It is also a commonly used ingredient in Vietnamese salads and soups. However, what is interesting to note though that this mint ingredient does not actually belong to the mint family although its general appearance and odor are reminiscent.
Evelyn Lim publishes a tips on Herbal Home Remedies for treating various illnesses in her free newsletter. To gain access to her tips and a bonus MP3 download on Herbs For Health, please visit her site at https://www.HerbalRemedyTips.com
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