The genus name, Mentha, is derived from Minthe. In Greek mythology, Minthe was a nymph taken by Pluto as a lover. Filled with jealousy, Pluto’s wife Persephone turned Minthe into a mint plant. The species name piperita is Latin for “like a pepper.” This references the plant’s peppery taste. Medical prescriptions on ancient papyrus scrolls suggest that peppermint has been used since ancient times in Egypt. Peppermint has a long history of use as a medicinal and culinary herb in the middle east and Asia. The first modern description of peppermint comes from English botanist John Ray in 1696.
Peppemrint is a hybrid of watermint and spearmint. It grows up to thirty-six inches high and has aromatic, serrated leaves. Peppermint is considered more medicinal than other mint varieties due to its high menthol essential oil content. The finest quality peppermint is said to grow in the northwestern United States, and this is from where this organic peppermint is sourced. Peppermint tea has long been used to aid digestion, calm queasy stomachs, help clear sinuses, enhance mental clarity, and serve as a mood enhancer. Peppermint tea is a great caffeine-free morning pick me up!
Warning: Use with caution in persons with gastroesophageal reflux or with a hiatal hernia, as peppermint may decrease esophageal sphincter pressure. Use with caution in persons with gastrointestinal ulcers or significant gastrointestinal inflammation.