Both peppermint and spearmint are types of mint that are native to both Europe and Asia, which have long been valued for their special medicinal properties and cooling effects.
It has been known for generations that drinking mint tea benefits your digestion and one of the most popular remedies for an upset stomach is to sip on a freshly brewed cup of peppermint tea.
Let's take a closer look at 9 benefits of mint tea and why you should always have some in your kitchen cupboard:
1. May soothe indigestion
One of the most widely known benefits of peppermint tea is for easing stomach issues. Peppermint leaves contain compound essential oils including menthol, menthone and limonene which can help to calm your upset stomach and aid digestion.
Peppermint or spearmint leaves can be combined with other beneficial herbs and extracts, such as ginger, marshmallow root and camomile, to make herbal tea infusions that can deliver a wide variety of digestive benefits, such as easing constipation.
2. May ease IBS symptoms
Doctors will often prescribe peppermint oil capsules as a natural remedy to help patients seeking medical advice for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Therefore drinking peppermint tea could help to ease IBS symptoms such as stomach pain, bloating and flatulence.
3. Helps to reduce caffeine intake
Mint tea is a naturally caffeine free herbal tea. While most people drink mint tea infusions because they love the refreshing taste, many find it a great alternative to drinking caffeinated hot drinks such as coffee and black tea and even green tea, which also contains some caffeine. Avoiding caffeine, particularly in the afternoon and evening can help with sleep problems as well as with anxiety and palpitations.
The lack of caffeine also means you are less likely to have another energy dip when the caffeine starts wearing off.
4. May help with weight loss
For those wanting to reduce their sugar intake (for example to lose weight), or who are cutting out sugar for other health reasons, drinking mint tea with its slight natural sweetness and uplifting aroma, is a great hydrating alternative to drinking sugar-laden colas, fruit juice and soft drinks.
If you find yourself flagging mid-afternoon, instead of reaching for a sugary soft drink, try drinking a calorie free cup of mint tea instead. Your blood-sugar levels will be more stable and you will be avoiding the dreaded energy crash that comes after a spike in your insulin.
5. May boost the immune system
Peppermint oil contains compounds which are said to have antibacterial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties, all helpful to aid the immune system.
Mint might also help to fight infections of the upper respiratory tract and help relieve a stuffy nose. If you catch a cold or suffer from sinusitis, then drinking a hot cup of peppermint tea and inhaling the menthol vapours can help to reduce nasal congestion.
6. May provide allergy relief
An interesting compound found in peppermint is rosmarinic acid, which is found in rosemary and some of the mint family. Rosmarinic acid acts to reduce symptoms of allergic reactions including sneezing, itching and runny nose found with seasonal allergies such as hay fever.
7. May help with bad breath
Peppermint is also a common ingredient in toothpaste, breath mints and chewing gum, all of which are typical grocery store options to fight bad breath. However, mint tea is a brilliant and entirely natural way to wash away the bacteria in the mouth which can cause bad breath.
8. May help as natural pain relief
It is thought that the aroma of a hot cup of peppermint tea acts positively on our olfactory system. There could be many applications of this including helping with tension headaches as the natural menthol oil vapours released from the leaves can help relax tense cranial muscles and relieve pain.
Similarly, the soothing compounds found in mint leaves might also help reduce the severity of dysmenorrhea (menstrual cramping). So before you reach for the painkillers, maybe try some mint tea first.
9. May boost focus
The refreshing and stimulating effect of drinking mint tea is also believed to help to boost mental alertness and concentration. The scent of peppermint tea stimulates the limbic system, making you more alert – a perfectly delicious way to boost your focus and ace your test.
Dragonfly’s Mint Teas
With all these benefits of mint tea, and particularly the benefits of peppermint tea, try it out for yourself! Whether you’re a mint purist or a herbal explorer, we think you’ll find something to love in our carefully selected and blended teas.
Our Pure Peppermint tea is made using sustainably sourced organic peppermint leaves slowly dried to retain their special essential oils. Deliciously fresh and reviving with a slight sweetness, it is a classic at any time of day.
We also have our popular Mint Garden Digestif tea, inspired by celebrated herbs from the British and European botanical traditions. This gently vibrant and soothing blend combines organic peppermint with other organic herbs said to support digestion such as fennel seed, ginger and nettle. Perfect to cleanse the palate and settle the system after a heavy meal, it is one of our go-to favourites.
If you are looking for a bit of a pick me up, why not try our quenching Moroccan Mint Green Tea. Served all day and night with meals in Morocco, every cup of this wonderfully reviving tea is said to be a refreshing surprise. Try our aromatic blend of gunpowder green tea and spearmint leaves drunk as it is or with a little drop of honey, Moroccan style! Delicious and one of our very best-sellers.
When making this tea, allow the kettle to cool slightly after boiling so that you don’t scald the green tea leaves, then simply pour the hot water onto the tea bags and infuse.
Is it cocktail time? If the answer is yes, then have a look at our Clean Gin and Moroccan Mint recipe for a super refreshing mocktail.
Did you know?
The mint family is a truly ancient class of plants containing over 30 different species and has been part of the culinary and medicinal world for thousands of years. The name comes from the Greek nymph Menthe who was turned into a plant by Persephone and sprigs of mint have even been found in ancient Egyptian tombs!
Peppermint is relatively a new kid on the mint block. It is actually a hybrid of Spearmint and Water Mint, and was first recorded in Britain by the botanist Linnaeus in the 18th century. Spearmint with its more pointed leaves is native to Europe and Asia and has a softer taste than Peppermint with its rounder leaves and high levels of menthol.