Benefits of Coriander and Mint
Mint, that well known mouth and breathe freshener, scientifically known
as Mentha, with over two dozens of species and hundreds of its
varieties, is an herb with remarkable medicinal properties. The market
is full of products like tooth paste, chewing gums, mouth & breathe
fresheners, candies and inhalers etc. which are based on mint. Most of
us are familiar with only the refreshing part of it, but it has much
more to offer than that. Let’s have a look.
The health benefits of mint include the following:
* Digestion: Mint is a good appetizer and promotes digestion, due to its
typical aroma. It also soothes stomach in cases of indigestion,
inflammation etc. This aroma of mint activates the saliva glands in our
mouth as well as glands which secrete digestive enzymes, thereby
facilitating digestion. Thus it is extensively used in culinary.
* Nausea & Headache: Again, the strong and refreshing aroma of mint is
an excellent and quick remedy for nausea. Whenever you feel it, just
smell the oil of mint or crushed fresh mint leaves or use any product
with mint flavor, whichever is available near you, and it will be gone.
In fact, many people keep mentha oil or mint flavored products with them
to avoid nausea, particularly when they are traveling. Balms based on
mint or simply mint oil, when rubbed on forehead and nose, gives quick
relief in headache.
* Respiratory Disorders, Cough etc.: The strong aroma of mint is very
effective in opening up congestion of nose, throat, bronchi and lungs,
giving relief in respiratory disorders resulting from asthma, cold etc.
As it cools and soothes throat, nose and other respiratory channels, it
gives relief in cough too. Many balms are based on this property of
mint. Unlike other inhalers which are based on aerosols, those based on
mint are more effective and eco-friendly too.
* Asthma: Regular use of mint is very beneficial for asthma patients, as
it is a good relaxant and gives relief in congestion. But, over dosage
may irritate as well.
* Skin Care, pimples etc.: While mint oil is a good anti septic and anti
pruritic, mint juice is an excelle,nt skin cleanser. It soothes skin,
cures infections, itching etc., and is also good for pimples. Its anti
pruritic properties can be used for treating bites of insects like
mosquitoes, honey-bees, hornets, wasps, gnats etc.
* Female Sterility: Now, there is a mixed opinion about this. Some say
that prolonged use of menthol may cause sterility and induce inability
to conceive, by interfering with the production of ova and also killing
these gametes, because of its germicidal and insecticidal properties. It
is also heard that men who smoke menthol cigarettes are more likely to
suffer from impotency than those who smoke normal cigarettes. It is not
certain whether it is due the tobacco alone or mint has anything do with
it. But menthol certainly has insecticidal properties. While another
group suggests that mint may be used to treat sterility in females.
* Oral Care: This is a well known property of mint. Being a germicidal
and breathe freshener, it takes care of oral health by inhibiting
harmful bacterial growth inside mouth and by cleaning tongue and teeth.
* Cancer: Current researches show that certain enzymes present in mint
may help cure cancer.
* Other Benefits: Besides its wide industrial use in food stuffs such as
ice-creams, chocolates etc., alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages,
cosmetics, medicines, inhalers and mouth and breathe fresheners, it is
used as a condiment and decorative item in culinary world-wide. Drinks
and food-stuffs containing mint cools you off in summer. It is a good
relaxant. One more peculiar property which is very much in contrary to
its cooling and soothing effects is that it induces sweating if consumed
in fever, thereby curing it. Mint juice can be applied on burns to heal
and soothe them. It is also beneficial in rheumatism. It is also said to
improve activity of the brain, although there are no sufficient proofs.
The health benefits of coriander include treatment of swellings, high
cholesterol levels, diarrhea, Mouth ulcers, anemia, digestion, menstrual
disorders, small pox, eye care, conjunctivitis, skin disorders, blood
sugar disorders, etc.
Coriander, commonly known as Dhania in the Indian Subcontinent or
Cilantro in the Americas and some part of Europe, is an herb which is
extensively used around the world as a condiment or as a garnish or as a
decoration on the dishes. Its scientific name is Coriandrum Sativum L.
Its leaves and fruits have typical aroma and are used raw or dried in
But that part of introduction was only the tip of the ice-berg.
Coriander has so many benefits that a book can be written on them. It
has eleven components of essential oils, six types of acids (including
ascorbic acid, better known as vitamin-C), minerals and vitamins, each
having a number of beneficial properties. The rest is given below.
* Swellings: Cineole, one of the 11 components of the essential
oils, and linoleic acid, present in coriander, possess anti rheumatic
and anti arthritic properties, which are very beneficial for swelling
caused due to these two reasons. For others, such as swelling due to
malfunctioning of kidney or anemia, it is seen to be effective to some
extent, as some of the components help excretion of extra water from the
* High Cholesterol Levels: Some of the acids present in coriander viz.
linoleic acid, oleic acid, palmitic acid, stearic acid and ascorbic acid
(vitamin-C) are very effective in reducing the cholesterol level in the
blood. They also reduce the cholesterol deposition along the inner walls
of the arteries and veins.
* Diarrhea: Some of the components of essential oils in coriander such
as Borneol and Linalool, aid digestion, proper functioning of liver and
bonding of bowels, helping cure diarrhea. It is also helpful in diarrhea
caused by microbial and fungal action, since components like Cineole,
Borneol, Limonene, Alpha-pinene & beta-phelandrene have anti bacterial
effects. In addition, the fresh coriander leaves are excellent
* Mouth Ulcers: Citronelol, a component of essential oils in coriander,
is an excellent antiseptic. In addition, other components have anti
microbial and healing effects which do not let wounds and ulcers in the
mouth go worse. They aid healing up of ulcers and freshen up the breath.
* Anemia: Coriander is good in iron content which directly helps curing
* Digestion: Coriander, due to its rich aroma because of its essential
oils, apart from being an excellent appetizer, helps in proper secretion
of enzymes and digestive juices in the stomach, stimulates digestion and
peristaltic motion. It is helpful in treating problems like anorexia.
* Small Pox: The essential oils in coriander are rich in anti microbial,
anti oxidant, anti infectious and detoxifying components and acids. The
presence of vitamin-C and iron strengthen the immune system too. These
properties help prevent and cure small pox. They also reduce the pain
and have a soothing effect on pox patients.
* Eye Care: Coriander has lots of anti oxidants, vitamin-A, vitamin-C
and minerals like phosphorus in the essential oils in it which prevents
aging of eye, macular degeneration and soothes eyes against stress.
* Conjunctivitis: As discussed earlier, coriander is a very good
disinfectant and has anti microbial properties which protect the eyes
from contagious diseases like conjunctivitis.
* Skin Disorders: The disinfectant, detoxifying, anti-septic,
anti-fungal and anti-oxidant properties of cumin are ideal for curing
skin disorders such as eczema, dryness and fungal infections.
* Blood Sugar: Due the stimulating effect of cumin on the endocrine
glands, the secretion of insulin is increased from pancreas which
increases the insulin level in the blood, thereby helping proper
assimilation and absorption of sugar and resultant fall in the sugar
level in the blood. This property is very beneficial for the diabetes
patients and others too.
* Other benefits: Still want more from it? You get it! Coriander helps
cure ulcer, inflammation, spasm and acts as an expectorant, protects and
soothes liver. It is anti-carcinogenic, anti-convulsant, anti-histaminic
and hypnotic. Coriander is believed to be a natural aphrodisiac and
previously it was extensively used in certain preparations, combined
with other herbs, to enhance libido.
Disclaimer: All information is provided here only for general health education. Please consult your health physician regarding any treatment of health issues.
22 Jul, 2011