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INNER BEAUTY: Being in Pepper-"mint" Condition in the Heat and Humidity

Even though I carefully plan my days out of the office, my mind and body often take unscheduled vacations in the summer.  Just venturing out of the air-conditioning long enough to walk the dog can cause my personal "operating system" to crash and lethargy, nausea and brain fog set in.  That's why in the summer time, I always have peppermint oil at hand.

Avoid Having an Out of Mind and Body Experience

Mentally, peppermint clears the brain, helps concentration, is restorative in cases of mental fatigue, and a mental stimulant.  Studies have shown that participants focus better and make fewer errors while inhaling peppermint oil.  Physically, peppermint is the ideal remedy for digestive disorders, including nausea and vomiting.  It is a great remedy for car or air sickness.

A study on the effects of peppermint on athletic performance conducted by Dr. Raudenbush and his colleagues at Wheeling Jesuit University showed that it reduced perceived physical workload, temporal workload, effort and frustration.  Participants also rated their level of vigor higher and level of fatigue lower in the peppermint condition.  (see more)  Menthol, which is present in abundance in peppermint oil, helps in clearing the respiratory tract.  It is an effective expectorant and therefore provides instantaneous, though temporary, relief in numerous respiratory problems including nasal congestion, sinusitis, asthma, bronchitis, cold and cough.

Relief Is In the Air

Peppermint is the second most popular essential oil (after Lavender) and it is used in various applications and dilutions.  One must exercise care, as the concentration of oil in fresh mint leaves, or mint tea is minute compared to the pure essential oil.  Surprisingly, peppermint may be either cooling or warming depending on the dilution used. In low dilutions (less than 2%) it is very cooling.  In HIGH dilutions, greater then 5%, it will be warming (a rubecacient), and serve as a counter-irritant in pain relief blends.  The safest and most potent way to restore oneself with peppermint is by inhaling the pure essential oil.

The oil can be placed in a room diffuser (cold air diffusers like fans and pumps are best as they do not compromise the efficacy of the oil as heat and burning do).  If you want to diffuse in an office or school setting where there are others around you who might object to ambient aromas, or when you are traveling, aromatherapy jewelry is a great way to limit the diffusion to your personal space only.  (So your colleagues fall asleep at their desk..their loss!)

Look "Cool" and Feel Refreshed

AROMAWEAR Jewelry and Accessories offers 2 styles that are designed to give you control of the aroma diffusion in each of these situations.  The Royal Locket collection (pendant, bracelet and key ring) will deliver uninterrupted diffusion to surround and support you with your choice of aroma.  The Secret Locket has a cover to control the release of aroma, and to keep the oils from evaporating between uses.  This is useful when you are surrounded by others, or your oil is very potent, and you want to inhale it every now and then.  Other possibilities you might like are to add 1 drop peppermint to a big glass of water to sip on, or fill a small glass spray bottle and add 1 to 2 drops peppermint per ounce of water.  Spray your environment and breathe deeply.
(Avoid getting the spray in your eyes or on your glasses - One should avoid peppermint oil when pregnant or nursing and keep away from children under the age of 3 )

Added Satisfaction

As an added bonus…one that moves us into the realm of outer beauty:  Alan Hirsch, M.D., studied peppermint's ability to directly affect the brain's satiety center which triggers a sensation of fullness after meals.  It looks like they are saying "inhale more... and eat less!"

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