Mint for Missed Periods

February 12, 2013

Early research is linking wild mint to improved menstruation periods.

Mint is widely regarded as a flavor, but little is known of the ingredient’s potential to regulate menstrual periods.

Because of side effects associated with hormone therapy and consumer demand for natural alternatives, researchers from Iran’s Shahed University and Tehran University of Medical Sciences are exploring menstrual period regulation with an herb cited in Iranian traditional medicine: horse mint or wild mint (Mentha longifolia L.).

In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 120 women with amenorrhea (absence of menstruation) or oligomenorrhea (infrequent or light menstruation) were instructed to consume 45 ml of mint syrup or placebo for two weeks. Subjects kept diary cards to confirm and score their bleeding occurrence throughout each menstrual cycle.

Women who consumed mint during their first menstrual cycle were 68.3% likely to menstruate compared to 13.6% of women in the placebo group. Across all included menstrual cycles, mint consumption was still associated with more frequent bleeding than placebo (33.3% compared to 3.3%), and with zero notable side effects.

Published in DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, the Iranian study is regarded as the first ever on mint consumption in this female population.

“Due to the beneficial effects of Mentha longifolia L., besides its safety, availability, and low cost; a future therapeutic role in women with amenorrhea and oligomenorrhea is expected,” concluded the researchers.