At this time of year, we may think of peppermint primarily as the spicy flavor in candy canes, but this herb and its essential oil have also been used for health purposes.
Peppermint oil has been studied most extensively for irritable bowel syndrome. Results from several studies indicate that peppermint oil in enteric-coated capsules (which helps to release the drug after passing the stomach) may improve symptoms of this condition. However, peppermint oil can also cause heartburn. To avoid this problem, don’t take antacids at the same time as peppermint oil capsules. Antacids can cause the enteric coating on the capsules to break down too quickly.