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One of the most popular flavors and scents during the holiday season is peppermint. Many people have peppermint candy canes on hand during this time of the year.
There are good reasons why you might want a supply of pure peppermint essential oil in the cupboard as well, and not just for the holidays.
Peppermint oil is not the same as the peppermint extract you might have on hand for cooking purposes. Pure peppermint oil is steam distilled from the entire peppermint plant and is not diluted with any other substance. Peppermint extract is primarily peppermint-flavored alcohol.
The most convenient way to enjoy the benefits of peppermint oil is to use an essential oil diffuser. They come in enough sizes, shapes, and price ranges to make Santa’s head spin. Electronic diffusers eliminate the need for a flame or other heat source, and they provide an even, very fine mist.
Although peppermint has mood lifting and energizing effects on people, it can also calm frazzled nerves. While soothing nerves it reduces mental fatigue, increases mental clarity, and may give relief from mild depressive symptoms, the blahs or the blues.
Preparing for the holiday celebration can become a bit overwhelming at times. The toy you are looking to buy might be sold out, or the tree lights are hopelessly tangled. Life rarely goes exactly as planned.
The result of holiday fun can be a tension headache. Peppermint contains menthol that gives it a cooling effect. A bit of oil placed on the temples gives some people quick headache and fatigue relief.
If a relative arrives at your house looking green from their flight, try making them tea from peppermint leaves. Peppermint tea can settle queasy, nauseous tummies. It is also an anti-spasmodic which relaxes the stomach and prevents vomiting (always nice to avoid at a holiday celebration).
If you or someone close to you receives a cold for the holiday, peppermint is great for opening stuffy noses and sinuses.
Although peppermint oil is not a treatment for asthma, the anti-inflammatory effect of the oil can help calm inflamed bronchi resulting from an asthma attack.
The effectiveness of peppermint oil comes largely from anecdotal evidence. Not much research has been done.
Consult your doctor before consuming peppermint oil if you are on prescription medications, pregnant, breastfeeding, or have gastrointestinal problems. Avoid giving to infants or young children.
Though it may give temporary relief, peppermint oil is not considered a treatment for the diagnosis of depression or anxiety. Always read the peppermint oil label carefully before using.
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