Pennyroyal mint is present in all kitchens around the world as an alternative to tea and coffee, and to improve digestion in heavy meals.
However, there are more benefits of poelo mint to discover and we are going to tell you, one by one, in this article where we praise the possibilities of this medicinal plant known scientifically as Mentha pulegium.
Where does the plant come from?
Pennyroyal or pennyroyal mint is a very standardized infusion that comes from the plant Mentha pulegium.
The pennyroyal has the appearance of a cespitous plant, a creeping species that spreads very quickly horizontally if the soil is fertile and has moisture.
Formerly, it was used in traditional medicine as an herb for consumption and for direct application on the skin.
In fact, pennyroyal mint is registered in Capitulare de villis vel curtis imperii, a legislative act that was created in the eighth century or later, during the reign of Charlemagne.
In this text, he writes in a careful and very meticulous way techniques and characteristics of different activities, trades, medicine, botany, agriculture and food, among others.
Phytochemical composition of pennyroyal mint
The benefits of pennyroyal mint come from a number of components considered phytochemicals that, in the concentration in which they are found in pennyroyal mint (Mentha pulegium), makes it possess the stimulating properties for our body.
Fatty acids: palmitic acid, lauric acid, formic acid.
Tannins and plant defense substances
Flavonoids: diosmin and hesperidin
Essential oils: thujone and pulegona
Pulegona: essential oil typical of plants of the genus Mentha.
The organic compound of pennyroyal mint known as pulegona it is a pleasant-smelling essential oil (typical of the Genus Mentha) but quite toxic in high doses. It is known that the consumption of essential oil by animals and humans can become toxic and produce alterations and failures in organs such as the liver.
However, when the plant is dried properly or by the temperatures of the infusion of pennyroyal mint, the essential oil loses its properties and ceases to be toxic.
Benefits of pennyroyal mint
We must not despise, far from it, the great contribution of vitamins and the benefits of pennyroyal mint. As for nutrients and energy, the content is very negligible, since it is water with a small concentration of the plant extract.
However, look at our table of minerals and vitamins.
Mineral composition (per 100 grams)
|Minerals||Concentration||% recommended daily|
Vitamin composition (per 100 grams)
|Vitamins||Concentration||% recommended daily|
|Vitamin B1||0.03 mg||2,5%|
|Vitamin B2||0.95 mg||73,1%|
|Vitamin B3||0.1 mg||0,7%|
Something that will surprise you is the high concentration of vitamin B2, whose 100 grams of consumption of pennyroyal mint provide us with more than 70% of the recommended daily amount of this vitamin.
The benefits of pennyroyal mint, therefore, are closely related to the contribution of B2, which produces the following benefits in our body:
- Essential for growth
- Intervenes in cellular respiration processes
- Increases the production of red and white blood cells
- Facilitates liver detoxification
These are, by way of summary, the properties and benefits of pennyroyal mint:
- Carminative properties
- Choleretic properties
- Digestive properties
- Emmenagogue properties
Improves digestion after heavy meals
Pennyroyal mint intervenes in the relaxation of the digestive system, reduciendor the annoying contractions and the so-called cramps.
Its mineral content facilitates the elimination of fats and the feeling of stomach heaviness.
By increasing the secretion of gastric juices, heavy meals are transformed more quickly by the action of stomach acids. This secretion intervenes in the stomach, pancreas and intestines.
By its carminative properties, eliminates the excess gas that is produced in the body when we ingest a large amount of proteins and fats.
Relief from respiratory problems
One of the most active compounds in helping against respiratory problems is menthol.
Many medical and pharmacological compounds for nasal use contain this active ingredient, which is present in the pennyroyal plant.
The benefits of pennyroyal mint make it easier to clear the airways and improve the entry of air into the lungs, especially in situations of colds, flu or inflammation of the airways.
In the past, the benefits of pennyroyal mint were used for nervous or hysteria people. This is because it contains among its phytochemical components with partially sedative effect.
This, adding to the intake of the hot infusion and the flavoring effect it produces, manages to reduce the feeling of stress and nervousness.
We can alternately mix the benefits of pennyroyal mint with the properties of rooibos tea to achieve a synergistic effect.
The presence of the set of essential oils related to tannins offer properties against insects, such as flies and mosquitoes.
Small doses have shown efficacy and neurotoxic activity, although it does not affect bees or bumblebees.
Benefits of pennyroyal mint to regulate menstruation
Pennyroyal essential oils such as thujone (or thujone) and pulegona have brain stimulating (analeptic) activity and have been linked to facilitating the expulsion of blood in women with complicated menstruations.
This occurs by increasing blood circulation and stimulating the area of the female reproductive system, in this case, so it increases menstrual flow.
Comment that thujone or tujone, in high concentrations, is toxic to the liver and brain. However, you would have to drink huge amounts of pennyroyal mint to overdose (about 45 grams per kilo of thujone weight).
Applied in ointment topically, the extract of pennyroyal mint leaves facilitates healing thanks to the terpenes and polyphenols present in the plant.
It facilitates wound healing and has antimicrobial activity, due to the presence of thymol and carvacrol, which inhibit the development of fungi and bacteria.
Its application in the form of a tincture on the skin also has a potential anti-inflammatory effect. Its use can reduce joint and muscle pain, as has been shown in some scientific trials.
On the skin, it can also treat some problems related to infections (eczema or psoriasis), demonstrating good efficacy in combination with modern treatments used. [See study]
The benefits of pennyroyal mint are also applicable to small febrile states, as it helps to relax us and lower fever.
This is due to the concentration of salicylic acid in pennyroyal mint, a component used in the famous aspirin that is still taken today to reduce pain.
The benefits of pennyroyal mint to facilitate the expulsion of gases
The benefits of pennyroyal mint in the increased digestive activity is favored by the presence of thymol (also present in the thyme extract), menthol and carvacrol.
This facilitates a greater ability to expel gas and activate intestinal transit, very positive in the hours after heavy meals or those that cause flatulence.
Contraindications of pennyroyal mint
- The use of this plant is totally contraindicated in pregnant or lactating women.
- Peppermint is also contraindicated in people with: anemia, hypoglycemia, people who are under medical treatment and children under 2 years.
- In addition, due to its high concentration of pulegone debin extreme care regarding its dose.