7 Advantages and Disadvantages of Mint Leaves

Mint is a wonderful smelling herb that is well known by most people. It has a wonderful fresh scent that most enjoy. But what are the pros and cons of this well known herb?

List of Advantages of Mint Leaves

1. Help with Common Cold
Drinking a tea made of fresh or dried mint leaves is a great way to alleviate some of the symptoms of the common cold. The menthol breaks up the mucous and allows for easier breathing.

2. Treat IBS
Peppermint oil, when consumed, can soothe your irritated bowels and calm the symptoms of IBS. Simply eating fresh leaves won’t be enough to help with IBS – you will need to look for and take capsules that contain the oil obtained from the leaves.

3. Soothe Indigestion
Mint leaves increase bile in your stomach and can help your body digest food more comfortably. Consuming mint leaves helps with this. The best way to reap this benefit is to finely crush the fresh leaves before eating them.

4. Allergy Relief
The antioxidant rosmarinic acid in mint leaves can help relieve any seasonal allergies that you experience. Mint leaves are full of this powerful antioxidant, which is also an anti-inflammatory, perfect for soothing irritated nasal passages and your throat. The leaves can also be rubbed on a topical allergy and the oil will help calm your skin.

List of Disadvantages of Mint Leaves

1. Unhealthy for Infants
Rubbing menthol oil on an infant’s face can cause breathing problems. The oils contained in fresh mint leaves can be deadly to small children.

2. Unhealthy During Pregnancy
Mint tea made with fresh or dried leaves can actually cause problems during pregnancy. Large amounts of the leaves can actually trigger a miscarriage. Although some women can better tolerate mint than others, there’s still a risk for everyone.

3. Painful for Acid Reflux
The same property that makes mint leaves useful if you suffer from indigestion can be harmful if you suffer from acid reflux. By prompting your body to create more bile, mint leaves can actually harm the esophageal valve. This can actually cause more bile to leave your stomach and enter your esophagus, causing further problems.

As you can see, there are a lot of advantages to consuming mint leaves, but that does need to be weighed with any possible disadvantages. This healthy herb is available to most people and can really help alleviate certain medical problems.

Author Bio
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.