Mint or pudina is aromatic, almost exclusively perennial herb. There are a variety of mints— some of the commonly known ones are peppermint, spearmint, applemint, lemon balm mint, chocolate mint etc. They have wide-spreading underground branched stems. They are fast-growing, extending their reach along surfaces through a network of creepers. Due to their speedy growth, one plant of each desired mint, with a little care, provides more than enough mint for home use. Some mint species are more invasive than others. To control over growth, they should be planted in deep, bottomless containers sunk in the ground, or planted above ground in tubs and barrels.
The leaf, fresh or dried, is the culinary source of mint but fresh mint is usually preferred over dried. The leaves have a warm, fresh, aromatic, sweet flavor with a cool aftertaste, and are used in teas, beverages, jellies, syrups, candies, and ice creams. In Middle Eastern cuisine, mint is used in lamb dishes, while in British cuisine and American cuisine, mint sauce and mint jelly are used, respectively. Mint (pudina) is a staple in Indian cuisine, used for flavouring curries and other dishes. Mint in used in chutneys to give them amazingly refreshing taste.
10 benefits of Mint / menthol—
Mint was massively used in traditional medicine. It was originally used as a medicinal herb to treat stomach ache and chest pains. The ancient Greeks believed rubbing mint on their arms would make them stronger.
- Eases digestion: Mint can work wonders for almost all digestive problems . Its antiseptic and antibacterial properties help relieve indigestion and also soothe an upset stomach. Pudin hara tablets are widely used over the counter medicine for stomach ache and indigestion.
- For asthma: Because of its anti-inflammatory properties mint can be used by asthamatic patients. It relieves the congestion and soothes the patient.
- For Diabetic patients: Mint is highly beneficial in controlling blood sugar levels. It is specifically important for type 2 diabetes.
- For weight loss: Mint is very effective in increasing metabolism rate and thus aids weight loss.
- Anxiety and stress: mint extracts are nearly as effective as Diazepam, a common anxiety medication, at reducing symptoms of this condition.
- For oral health: Mint essential oil and menthol are extensively used in breath fresheners, drinks, antiseptic mouth rinses, toothpaste, chewing gum, desserts, and candies, such as mint (candy) and mint chocolate.
- For cold and cough: Mint is known to clear congestion of the nose, throat, bronchi, and lungs. In addition to the respiratory channels, mint’s anti-inflammatory properties also relieve the irritation caused by chronic coughing. Lemon balm mint tea is a wonderful beverage.
- For Aromotherapy: Menthol and mint essential oil are also used in aromatherapy which may have clinical use to alleviate post-surgery nausea. Known in Greek mythology as the herb of hospitality, one of mint’s first known uses in Europe was as a room freshners.
- For skin care: Menthol from mint essential oil (40–90%) is an ingredient of many cosmetics and some perfumes. It help alleviate skin conditions like acne, pigmentation, oiliness, or dryness.
- In insecticides: Mint oil is also used as an environmental friendly insecticide for its ability to kill some common pests such as wasps, hornets, ants, and cockroaches.
Although it is used in many consumer products, mint may cause allergic reactions in some people, inducing symptoms such as abdominal cramps, diarrhea, headaches, heartburn, tingling or numbing around the mouth, anaphylaxis or contact dermatitis