MINT - Know your HERBS -

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MINT - Know your HERBS -

Post  Admin on Tue Mar 12, 2013 5:09 am

The botanical names for mint are Mentha piperita and Mentha Sativa.

Mint is a genus of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae (mint family). The genus has a subcosmopolitan distribution across Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia, and North America.

Mints are aromatic, almost exclusively perennial, rarely annual, herbs. They have wide-spreading underground and overground stolons and erect, square, branched stems. The leaves are arranged in opposite pairs, from oblong to lanceolate, often downy, and with a serrate margin. Leaf colors range from dark green and gray-green to purple, blue, and sometimes pale yellow. The flowers are white to purple and produced in false whorls called verticillasters. The corolla is two-lipped with four subequal lobes, the upper lobe usually the largest. The fruit is a small, dry capsule containing one to four seeds.

While the species that make up the Mentha genus are widely distributed and can be found in many environments, most Mentha grow best in wet environments and moist soils. Mints will grow 10–120 cm tall and can spread over an indeterminate area. Due to their tendency to spread unchecked, mints are considered a weed.

The parts of the mint used are: leaves

The nutritional value of mint is as follows:
potassium, calcium, iron, manganese and magnesium, antioxidant vitamins including vitamin A, beta carotene, and vitamin-C. The leaves of mint also contain many important B-complex vitamins like folates and riboflavin.

Health Benefits of mint

  • Mint promotes digestion, due to its typical aroma. It also soothes stomach in cases of indigestion, inflammation etc. This aroma of mint activates the saliva glands in our mouth as well as glands which secrete digestive enzymes, thereby facilitating digestion.

  • Aroma of mint is an excellent and quick remedy for nausea. Balms based on mint or simply mint oil, when rubbed on forehead and nose, gives quick relief in headache.

  • The strong aroma of mint is very effective in opening up congestion of nose, throat, bronchi and lungs, giving relief in respiratory disorders resulting from asthma, cold etc. As it cools and soothes throat, nose and other respiratory channels, it gives relief in cough too.

  • While mint oil is a good anti septic, mint juice is an excellent, skin cleanser. It soothes skin, cures infections, itching etc., and is also good for pimples. Its anti pruritic properties can be used for treating bites of insects like mosquitoes, honey-bees, hornets, wasps, gnats etc.

  • Being a germicidal and breathe freshener, it takes care of oral health by inhibiting harmful bacterial growth inside mouth and by cleaning tongue and teeth.


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