If you follow me on Instagram, you probably already know that I went to Sicily recently. Beyond the beautiful landscapes and delicious food, one thing I probably didn’t share was how — in the land of espresso and cappuccino — I had tea every morning! It wasn’t just any tea, but peppermint tea as mint is grown there and a (not widely known) local favorite and coffee alternative. And now that I’m back home, I have been drinking peppermint tea ever since! Finding another beverage to enjoy in the mornings is key, especially since I quit coffee.
The taste and smell are not the only reasons why I keep drinking this tea. I learned that peppermint tea is packed with antioxidants and has many benefits on the digestive and the immune systems, and for mental wellness. No wonder it is one of the most popular tea varieties in the world!
Read on for the benefits of drinking peppermint tea
Mint tea comes in a wide variety of types, but the most popular are peppermint and spearmint. Peppermint, in particular, is a cross between water mint and spearmint. Because of its unique blend, this tea packs in a lot of benefits.
Soothes your stomach
Peppermint tea is great for soothing upset stomachs. The menthol in this tea creates a cooling effect, which relaxes the stomach muscles, improves circulation, and alleviates inflammation. Feeling full after a meal? Drink this tea. It can reduce the “full” feeling and the inflammation that causes bloating.
Peppermint tea can also help regulate digestion by stimulating the gastrointestinal juices which speed up digestion. Specifically, it increases stomach bile which makes food digest more efficiently. One study reports that drinking this tea can also help move gas through the body, relieving the feeling of bloating and cramps.
Neutralizes bad breath
It is not by accident that most toothpastes and mouthwashes contain peppermint in them. It provides a fresh, clean feeling and fights bad breath. While it camouflages bad breath, peppermint tea also has antibacterial properties which work to kill the germs and bacteria that lead to bad breath.
If you consume smelly food, it is a good idea to drink the tea afterwards to neutralize the odor. For the best results, make sure your tea is made from real peppermint, not flavoring.
Fights the common cold
Peppermint tea can help fight off colds while building up your immunity. The same menthol that soothes your stomach can help soothe a sore throat, by relaxing the throat muscles that cause an irritating cough.
The antibacterial properties of this tea can help fight off bacteria that can be harmful to your immune system. Peppermint tea also contains important vitamins and nutrients that can boost the immune system. The antioxidants, calcium, potassium, and vitamin B in peppermint tea can help your body more easily absorb nutrients and fight bacteria so you can stay healthy.
Peppermint tea can also sharpen your mental acuity. Studies report that the menthol scent stimulates the hippocampus in the brain which controls mental clarity and focus. Additional studies show that the scent can also improve memory accuracy.
To get these results, make sure to inhale the aromas of the tea while drinking it. Science shows that these results mostly come from the smell, not from consuming it.
Peppermint tea can help reduce stress and anxiety. It is commonly used in Ayurveda and aromatherapy for its sedative qualities. After a long day, drink the tea as a way to unwind and relax. Do not worry about being jittery, a peppermint tea is caffeine-free and will not cause insomnia.
It’s not for everyone!
Though it has a lot of benefits, those who are pregnant or suffer from acid reflux should avoid peppermint tea. If you are taking any medications, make sure to consult your doctor, as peppermint tea can interact negatively with medications for acid reflux, blood pressure, diabetes, and heart burn.