You can always toss a painkiller into your mouth each time you are being nagged by a headache or an aching knee. Or you can simply brew yourself a cup of a particular type of tea that experts say work just as effectively as your favorite painkiller — but without all of the serious side effects.
In Brazil, there is a plant in the mint family that is locally known as “salva de marajo” and “chazinho de hortela”. But for everyone else outside the said country, it’s called the “Brazilian mint” — what else?
Traditionally, the Brazilian mint is used for medicinal purposes. The leaves are used for making highly potent decoctions and infusions, and sometimes volatile oils are extracted from them for a variety of healing uses. It is also popular in Brazil for the leaves of the said plant to be dried and turned into tea.
Effective for All Sorts of Pain
Brazilian mint tea, in the country where it comes from, is commonly employed for dealing with various types of pain, which range from stomach discomfort to whole body pain that is associated with the flu.
Scientists from Newcastle University conducted animal studies on Brazilian mint tea. They found out that the said herbal beverage was just as effective as painkillers in eliminating pain. According to them, what makes Brazilian mint tea excellent at relieving pain is a plant molecule that is yet to be identified.
They say that they are not really shocked with their findings, most especially because majority of pharmaceutical solutions for various types of pain contain potent molecules derived from plants.
Correct Tea Preparation
In order for the said scientists to really find out what makes Brazilian mint tea well-trusted in the country where it comes from work as a pain reliever, they had to prepare the beverage in the exact manner as it’s done in Brazil.
Well, there are various ways of preparing Brazilian mint tea. The most popular of them all, however, is the one that entails allowing dried Brazilian mint to boil in water for 30 minutes. Afterwards, the resulting tea is cooled completely before consumption. Following the traditional preparation could greatly help scientists figure out what made it work.
Various Other Health Benefits Offered
Apart from relieving various body aches and pains such as an upset stomach, a throbbing headache or lower back pain, the intake of Brazilian mint tea is also known to come with a bunch of other benefits. For instance, back in Brazil, the beverage is commonly employed for sinusitis and various lung disorders.
It is also employed by traditional healers in dealing with intestinal parasites. Just like so many other herbal teas on the planet, Brazilian mint tea is also commonly used for strengthening the immune system and fighting infections.
What’s so nice about Brazilian mint tea is it can provide pain relief (and offer all the other aforementioned perks) just as effectively as painkillers, but without causing unfavorable side effects.
Can Put One’s Life in Peril
Prescription drugs for pain, most especially, are notorious for producing all sorts of side effects. For instance, some of them can actually irritate and damage the lining of the stomach, potentially causing ulcers to develop. When these painkillers are taken in combination, damage to the stomach can be increased tremendously.
Some prescription painkillers are also proven to damage the kidneys. Some of them are known to increase the blood pressure, and may even cause miscarriage.
If you think that you are safe taking OTC painkillers, think again. Just because they can be obtained without a doctor’s prescription doesn’t mean that they’re free of risks. For instance, acetaminophen can cause toxicity or damage to the liver even in small doses if it’s taken by someone who regularly drinks alcohol.