Peppermint flea – peppermint flea

Flea mint (Mentha pulegium); flea mint 

Perennial herbaceous plant of the labiumaceae family. The stem is erect, four-sided, branched, short-hairy above, 15-50 cm tall. The leaves are opposite, petiolate, oval or ovate, toothed, wedge-shaped at the base, pubescent. The flowers are small, in thick, almost spherical rings; calyx double-lipped, with ciliated teeth at the edges, corolla almost regular, with a 4-lobed bend, pinkish-lilac with a whitish tube, sparsely hairy outside. The fruit consists of 4 one-seeded nut-shaped lobes. Blooms in July – August.

Spread. Mint flea grows sporadically in the western regions of Ukraine and in the south of the Crimean region along the shores of reservoirs, on floodplain meadows.

Procurement and storage . Flea mint (Herba Menthae pulegii) is used to make medicine, which is harvested during the flowering of the plant by cutting the leafy parts of the stems in the morning. The collected grass is dried under shelter in the open air or in a ventilated room. 25% of dry grass is obtained. Ready raw materials are stored in well-closed cans or cans. The validity period is 1 year.

The plant is unofficial .

Chemical composition . Dried peppermint herb contains essential oil (1-2%), tannins, saponin and flavanone glycoside hesperidin. The main components of the essential oil are pulegone (75-90%), azulene, limonene, dipentene and menthone. There is no menthol in peppermint essential oil.

Pharmacological properties and use . In folk medicine, flea mint has similar uses to peppermint. The plant is known for its antispasmodic, pain-relieving, anti-inflammatory, choleretic and disinfectant properties, ability to reflexly expand coronary vessels, stimulate the secretion of the glands of the gastrointestinal tract and increase appetite. An infusion of the herb is drunk for gastrointestinal disorders, for pain and spasms in the stomach and intestines, for flatulence, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, for gallstone disease and jaundice, to stimulate cardiac activity and relieve headaches and insomnia. Externally, an infusion of the herb is used for skin itching (washing), inflammation of the gums (rinsing), and nervous excitement (baths).

Medicinal forms and applications. Internally – herbal infusion (1 tablespoon of raw material per 200 ml of boiling water, infuse for 1 hour) half a glass 4 times a day before meals (drink warm!).

Externally – washing and rinsing with the above-mentioned infusion, baths with the infusion (50 g of grass is poured with 2 liters of boiling water, heated in a well-closed vessel for 10-15 minutes, cooled, filtered, squeezed and added to the bath).

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