Mint TeaWikipedia: Peppermint_tea | Teaviews: mint-tea
Updated: Feb. 2, 2016
About Mint Teaherbal tea. It is used as tea on its own, in herbal tea blends, or mixed with green or black teas.
Mint is not a single species of plant, but rather, a diverse plant family, Lamiaceae or Labiatae, that contains many plants called by the name of "mint" as well as many culinary herbs, medicinal plants, and a broad variety of other plants, including many plants important in herbal teas, such as lemon balm and wild bergamot. Most true mints (and plants with the characteristic "minty" aroma) belong to the metha genus, but a few plants in other genera also have minty aroma and bear the name "mint" as well.
Apple Mint (Left)
and Peppermint (Right)
Some cultivated mints are individual species that occur in the wild—e.g. spearmint is Mentha spicata, whereas others, such as Peppermint, are hybrids of different species. Usually when the term "mint" is used alone, it refers to spearmint, although for herbal teas, peppermint is more common. Most of the commercially available mint in the U.S. is either spearmint or peppermint.
Apple mint, also called woolly mint or fuzzy mint, is particularly important in tea culture, as it is traditionally used for blending with green tea in Morocco.
Mint tea can be made out of fresh or dried leaves. It is typically brewed with boiling water. The amount of leaf used typically varies by the species. Peppermint can have an overwhelmingly strong aroma, requiring less leaf to be used, whereas spearmint and other mints require more leaf. Mint teas make particularly good iced teas, as mint is often described as having a cool or refreshing quality.
Heath effectsMany mints have numerous health benefits. Spearmint has significant antioxidant properties which have been shown to aid in the preservation of meat. Mint tea has also been shown to enhance iron absorption. Peppermint, spearmint, and Japanese mint have been shown to inhibit and kill a number of strains of harmful bacteria, including antibiotic-resistant strains such as MSRA. Spearmint has also been shown to inhibit the growth of a variety of harmful fungi.
While most mints are generally safe for consumption in food or beverages, some species of mint are toxic in large doses. Pennyroyal (Mentha pulegium), which has a pleasant minty aroma and makes a delicious tea, can cause liver damage and can even be lethal in a high enough dose, and is an ongoing source of poisoning.
1. Sweetie R. Kanatt et. al., Antioxidant potential of mint (Mentha spicata L.) in radiation-processed lamb meat, Food Chemistry, Vol. 100, No. 2, 2007, pp. 451-458.
2. F. Zaida et. al., Iron Availability and Consumption of Tea, Vervain and Mint during Weaning in Morocco, Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism, Vol. 50, No. 3, 2006.
3. H. Imai et. al., Inhibition by the essential oils of peppermint and spearmint of the growth of pathogenic bacteria., Microbios., Vol. 106, Suppl. 1, 2001, pp. 31-9.
4. K. M. Soliman, R. I. Badeaa, Effect of oil extracted from some medicinal plants on different mycotoxigenic fungi, Food and Chemical Toxicology, Vol. 40, No. 11, Nov. 2002, pp. 1669-1675.
5. Ilene B. Anderson et. al., Pennyroyal Toxicity: Measurement of Toxic Metabolite Levels in Two Cases and Review of the Literature, Annals of Internal Medicine, Vol. 124, No. 8, Apr. 15, 1996, pp. 726-734.
Varieties, Kinds, or Types of Mint Tea
Best Mint Tea
The notion of the "best" Mint Tea is subjective, because different people have different tastes. We present the most often-rated and highest-rated teas in this category, and allow you to draw your own conclusions.
Most Often-Rated Teas