Mint is always a welcome addition to everyday life. You can find it in everything from gum, after-dinner treats, and toothpaste to ice cream, candy canes, and vodka. Mint has become one of the most widely-accepted herbs available in North America. You don’t have to have a sophisticated palate to appreciate it, and people of all ages love it. With a growing list of health benefits, and a mystical history, we know that there’s more to mint that meets the eye.
According to Greek Mythology, Minthe was a beautiful nymph who was loved by Hades, god of the underworld. Unfortunately, Hades’ wife, Persephone, found out about the affair. In a fit of anger, Persephone exacted revenge by turning Minthe into a plain-looking plant. Hades then compassionately gave the plant a sweet fragrance, so that at least people would be able to appreciate her sweet nature.
Mint has a host of practical benefits for the body and mind. In fact, the popular potent breath freshener, Altoids, was actually invented as a way to calm the stomach. Altoids contain a high dose of peppermint extract, the main ingredients of which are menthol and methyl salicylate - known to soothe a temperamental stomach. Mint’s uplifting taste and invigorating aroma help clear the mind and calm the spirit. Naturally caffeine-free, mint will also act as a muscle relaxant and will help your body unwind for a good night’s sleep.
For Firepot teas, we source our mint from here in the United States. Our mints are organically grown in the Pacific Northwest which produces, in our opinion, the best mint in the world! The cool climate and ample cloud cover there help to retain the sweet, potent essence of the plants.
In our Indian Rose Garden, we use spearmint. Spearmint is a bit softer and sweeter than other mints. It pairs nicely with the roses and chamomile. A natural antioxidant, spearmint contains vitamin A, beta-carotene, and vitamin C, as well as folates and B vitamins, including riboflavin, thiamin, and vitamin B6.
For our Moroccan Jasmine Mint tea, we use peppermint. It balanced the sweetness of the jasmine and aromatic green tea. Peppermint is a good source of minerals like iron, copper, magnesium, calcium, and potassium, and is rich in vitamin C. Peppermint has higher levels of menthol, which give it a stronger taste and aroma.
From chocolate mint to apple mint to water mint, people for centuries have been fascinated by the mint. Ancient Greeks sprinkled it throughout their homes as an air freshener. The more we learn about the beauty this plant provides, the more we love it. Mynthe may have thought it a curse, to be turned into this plant...we will be forever grateful.