We often associate mint with sweets- soft mints, after eights, mint chocolate chip ice cream all come to mind. Aside from helping to crave a sweet tooth, the plant in its natural form has some common and surprising benefits that can be devoured in one cup of tea.
Mint is full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents, such as rosmarinic acid, which aids with hay fever allergies. It acts as a natural antihistamine to relieve those seasonal allergy symptoms to help you breathe easier. Mint also contains menthol, which aids with colds as it acts as a natural aromatic decongestant. It works by breaking up phlegm and mucus, making it easier to expel and allowing us to feel better faster.
Menthol is also used as a muscle relaxant and helps with stress and anxiety as well as sleep deprivation. This incredible herb can also be used to prevent damage from breastfeeding in first time mothers as mint is able to prevent cracks to the nipple and relive pain that is caused from breastfeeding.
A common use of mint tea is to relieve an upset stomach or indigestion. The mint encourages bile flow to speed up and ease digestion, and also improves cholesterol levels. Another common use of mint is to aid with weight loss. It acts as an appetite suppressant and its sweet flavour eases cravings allowing you to lose weight.
To get the most health benefits from mint, we’d suggest brewing your own fresh mint tea. Here’s how:
To make fresh mint tea, you’ll need:
- 5-10 fresh mint leaves (any variety)
- 473ml boiling water
- A pot or kettle for boiling
- A sieve
- Sweeteners or lemon juice (optional)
- Pick your leaves, and then wash them to remove any dirt or bugs. Tearing the leaves before brewing releases their aroma making the tea stronger.
- Pop the clean leaves into a pot ready for boiling.
- Pour the boiling water on top of the leaves and leave too steep for 3-5 minutes depending on how strong you like your tea.
- Pour your tea into a cup using the sieve to remove the leaves. You can leave the leaves in the tea for another cup.
- If you desire, add sweeteners or lemon to add to the taste.
Like this tea recipe? There are lots of medicinal benefits to be had from other plants, see our other recipes below.