After a long day at the office, followed by whipping up a healthy meal, it’s tempting to crash and burn on your eating choices once dinner ends. However, with the benefits and taste of peppermint tea, you can have it all!
Let me introduce you to your new healthy post-dinner treat.
Peppermint tea has a myriad of health benefits and ends your night on a cozy, mindful note as you curl up with a mug and the ones you love. In fact, it’s been around, and a popular drinking choice, for thousands of years.
Here’s “the tea” on peppermint.
What Is Peppermint, Really?
This aromatic herb is a hybrid between spearmint and watermint, but it’s got a delicious flavor that’s all its own. In the scientific world, it’s called Mentha × Piperita, and it smells and tastes just as good as it feels.
The distinctive minty taste and benefits come from its essential oils like limonene, menthol, and menthone. These give it the cooling, refreshing qualities that we know and love.
You can find these oils in various products to add aroma or flavoring: toothpaste, bath products, aromatherapy, and mouthwash, to name a few. Though I love many of these items made with refreshing peppermint scents and tastes, nothing beats a cup of peppermint tea.
Benefits of Peppermint Tea
The benefits of peppermint tea range far and wide, benefitting everything from our stomachs to our concentration.
Science-backed health benefits of peppermint tea include:
- Aids digestion and stomach issues
- Relieves pain
- Supports a healthy weight
- Increases concentration and energy
- Promotes a healthy immune system
- Freshens breath
Most studies I reference below were conducted on peppermint extract rather than the peppermint leaves themselves.
I’m not a doctor, and this is not medical advice — but I am a wellness expert who is in love with this herbal tea!
Here are some of the top benefits of peppermint tea.
1. Aids Digestion & Stomach Issues
One of the best-known benefits of this mint tea is gastrointestinal relief. If you have stomach cramps, peppermint tea has been shown to stop your smooth muscles from contracting, which could ease stomach spasms and gastrointestinal pain, as well as gas and bloating.
Studies of both adults and children have shown that peppermint can make stomach pain less frequent, shorter, and less severe.
It’s also a possible comfort to people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), as much research has found peppermint can reduce symptoms by up to 40%.
2. Relieves Pain
Menstrual cramps may be a little more manageable after a cup of peppermint tea, and who doesn’t love a cup of something warm and soothing when we’re cramping? In fact, one study found a capsule form of peppermint as effective as NSAIDs in reducing period pain.
Pain can often stem from inflammation, and peppermint’s anti-inflammatory effects may give your immune system backup.
Peppermint tea may also provide welcome relief for headaches. More research is still needed, thanks to menthol, but early evidence shows that menthol can increase blood flow and create a soothing, cooling sensation.
3. Supports a Healthy Weight
Is peppermint tea good for losing weight? Peppermint tea may be good for weight loss, but more studies are needed to confirm exactly how it can influence weight long-term.
However, one animal study found that peppermint seemed to decrease appetite. Try a cup to stave off any late-night cravings.
4. Increases Concentration & Energy
Feeling drowsy or distracted? A cup of peppermint tea may help you focus once again. One study saw people have a better performance during cognitive tests after taking capsules of peppermint oil.
Inhaling the scent of your tea may also have positive effects on your stress levels. Maybe it’s time for all of us to start reaching for the peppermint tea before big presentations.
5. Promotes a Healthy Immune System
Whether it’s fighting off bacteria in the mouth or soothing a stuffy nose, peppermint tea packs an antibacterial punch and antifungal properties.
Breathing in the vapor from fresh peppermint tea can also help relieve infection symptoms in the respiratory tract, making it double trouble for sinus issues like the common cold.
Just keep in mind that peppermint tea is not a cure for bacterial or viral illnesses. Here are some of my other recommended ways to feel better fast with a cold or flu!
6. Freshens Breath
There’s a reason you can find this flavor in gum so often — peppermint is known for keeping breath fresh. If you’re worried about bad breath, grab a cup of peppermint tea before walking into a meeting.
Also, remember those antibacterial properties? Well, they may also assist in reducing pathogenic bacteria in your mouth, cutting down on gum disease and plaque.
Peppermint Tea Nutrition Facts
Can you believe that list of benefits?! From reducing bacteria to slimming your waistline to helping your digestion after a meal, there are so many reasons to love peppermint tea.
Better yet, these nutrition facts keep this party going with even more reasons to make this your new treat of choice. One cup of peppermint tea typically:
- Is naturally caffeine-free
- Contains no sugar
- Has 2 mg of sodium
- Contains no cholesterol
- Contains zero fat
- Contains 1% of your daily recommended dose of iron and potassium
Don’t forget, though, that adding honey, cream, or sugar will change these statistics. I find it delicious enough to enjoy it without any add-ins.
Peppermint tea does not contain caffeine, making it the perfect beverage to wind down before bed. Since it’s sugar-free, many of my clients find this post-dinner habit really replaces cravings for sugary desserts.
When to Drink Peppermint Tea
There’s really no wrong time to drink peppermint tea. Personally, I like to have a glass to refocus during workday afternoons, then a soothing cup after dinner.
Ending your meal with peppermint tea really hits the sweet spot without adding any extra sugar to your meal. It may calm any indigestion or upset stomach from a particularly rich or filling meal.
Peppermint tea takes very little time to work. You can start feeling many of the benefits within the first few minutes after drinking it or after taking your first whiff of its cooling scent.
3 Fun Peppermint Tea Recipes
If you’re like me, you’re a girl on the go with not a lot of time to devote to your new tea habit. That’s one reason this nutritious treat is a great addition: you can make it ahead of time and chill it, or add just a few simple ingredients without sacrificing nutrition.
You can substitute tea leaves for teabags. Here are my favorite easy, healing recipes.
Citrus Peppermint Iced Tea
- 3 peppermint tea bags (or 5 teaspoons of dried loose leaf peppermint tea)
- 4 cups of hot water
- Juice from 2 limes, freshly squeezed
- Boil the water over the stove or in an electric kettle.
- Steep tea bags in hot water for 5-10 minutes before removing them. A longer steep will give you a more robust peppermint flavor.
- Stir in lime juice and honey, if desired.
- Cool tea to room temperature.
- Place in the fridge for 3-4 hours to chill.
- Serve over ice and garnish with fresh peppermint leaves for a refreshing pick-me-up.
Stomach Soother Peppermint and Ginger Tea
- 3-inch piece of ginger
- 5 slices of lemon
- 1 stick of organic cinnamon
- 1-2 handfuls of fresh leaves of peppermint
- 3 cups of water
- Place the water in a pot and slowly bring it to a boil, putting in the lemon slices and ginger to release their flavors.
- Once water is boiling, add in the peppermint leaves and bring to low heat, allowing the mixture to simmer for 10 minutes.
- Strain the mixture and pour the liquid into a mug.
- Garnish with another lemon slice, if desired.
This recipe is great to make in a bigger batch and tastes great chilled or iced.
Morning Mint Green Tea
- 2 peppermint tea bags (or 4-6 mint leaves)
- 2 green tea bags
- 2 sprigs of fresh mint (click here for more ways to use this ingredient)
- 6 cups of water
- 2 tablespoons of manuka honey
- Bring the water to a boil.
- Remove from heat.
- Let steep, covered, for 8-12 minutes.
- Serve iced or hot, garnished with fresh mint.
*This recipe does contain caffeine, so you will want to start, not finish, your day with it.
How many cups of peppermint tea should you drink in a day? You should drink one or two cups of peppermint tea a day, and you can mix it up with these different varieties to keep your flavors fresh.
Does peppermint tea have side effects?
Wow. With benefits and taste like these, you’re probably asking: what are the side effects of peppermint tea? No side effects of peppermint tea were found in a study on the issue.
However, some people find that it can exacerbate GERD, kidney stones, or acid reflux, or heartburn in large quantities.
Many mamas-to-be are likely also asking, “Is it safe to drink peppermint tea while pregnant?” According to research, it is safe to drink 1-2 cups of peppermint tea daily while pregnant or breastfeeding. It may even help with nausea!
With those questions answered, there’s only one left to ask. Is it bad to drink peppermint tea every day? Nope, I personally drink it every day and don’t plan to stop anytime soon.
My Favorite After-Dinner Treat
So, there you have it. A mug of peppermint tea is a great habit to create for a cozy nightly ritual, even if you do occasionally still find yourself reaching for the chocolate. Remember, your healing journey is about consistency, not perfection.
Peppermint tea makes for a wonderful after-dinner ritual that will help you relax, connect with your significant other and friends, and boost your health. Let me know what you think!