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Peppermint is a plant that is cultivated all over the world. It is a hybrid of spearmint and watermint. Peppermint is lauded in many industries from food manufacturing, to cosmetics, and medicine for its versatility, flavor, aroma, and health benefits. In the food manufacturing industry, peppermint is an often-used ingredient for flavoring of products from gum to tea and much more. The medical uses for peppermint are many, such as for the treatment of various skin conditions, nausea, irritable bowel syndrome, flatulence, headaches, menstrual cramps, and the common cold.


Peppermint is so widely used for a vast array of products, conditions, illnesses, etc. that it is manufactured and delivered in many forms. As an essential oil for external use it is often delivered in the form of creams, rubs, and tinctures. For some conditions it is given as a capsule. Other forms of delivery are possible, ask your compounding pharmacist for more information. As each form of delivery or administration has its own particular set of instructions or directions, be sure to consult with your doctor before using any form of peppermint to ensure that it is safe for your use and that you know how to use it.


Peppermint may cause unwanted side effects in some users. Unfortunately there is no way to know how peppermint will affect you until you begin using it. Some users experienced side effects listed below, but your experience may be unique. Remember that you should always see your doctor if you experience anything that feels like it is lingering or perhaps getting gradually worse. Some of the possible side effects of peppermint are listed below.

  • Heartburn
  • Flushing
  • Headache
  • Mouth Sores
  • Other Allergic Reactions


Anyone who is considering the use of peppermint should have a frank discussion with his or her primary care doctor before beginning use. Your doctor will review your medical history, speak to you about your current health, and inform you of possible side effects that could be experienced. If your doctor thinks peppermint is a good option for your treatment or desired outcome, follow his or her directions for use. Always alert your doctor about any side effects or symptoms, etc. that are concerning to you.

Peppermint may be contraindicated for many reasons so discuss all contraindications with your doctor and let him or her decide if you should take or use peppermint.

Peppermint is contraindicated for the following:

  • Gallstones
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
  • Liver Disease
  • Parkinson's Disease
  • Digestive Ulcers

Peppermint may be unsafe for pregnancy and breastfeeding, especially in larger amounts. Do not take peppermint in any amount until you consult with your doctor and she or he advises you.

Peppermint may be contraindicated for the following:

  • Diarrhea
  • Achlorhydria
  • Anyone Experiencing Loose Stools
  • "It is rare to find health professionals who are so willing to educate the patient on what they need to know."

    Clair C. | West Hollywood, CA