The Health Benefits of Wintergreen Oil (Methyl Salicylate)
Wintergreen is an herb, native to eastern North America and Canada, wintergreen oil is made by steam processing of warmed, water-soaked wintergreen leaves which is normally used to make medicine it is also used as a fragrance, in foods and beverages. American Indians reportedly used wintergreen for treating back pain, toothache, rheumatism, fever, headaches, and sore throats centuries ago.
Wintergreen oil is known for its analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anti-rheumatic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, disinfectant, diuretic and stimulant therapeutic properties. It is popularly used as a topical pain-reliever in creams like Bengay and many others over the counter products.
- The methyl salicylate and salicylic acid acts like a natural aspirin. Dilute as needed and massage into the soles of the feet, the back of the neck, or over the area of concern for pain relief.
- Wintergreen oil is absorbed through the skin, it eventually reaches the blood stream, where it stimulates and increases urination, acting as a diuretic. This speeds up the removal of toxins like uric acid from the body through urination. The removal of excess water, fats, and salts through urine aids in weight loss, which also reduces the effects of rheumatic conditions.
- Wintergreen oil promotes menstruation and also helps get rid of problems like nausea, fatigue, and pain associated with it.
- The anti-spasmodic properties of wintergreen oil aids in treating all kinds of spasms in the respiratory system, digestive system, nervous system, circulatory system, and muscles. Adding few drops of wintergreen oil in steam inhalation, warm baths, gentle massaging and few other topical applications on the affected parts will give complete relief from respiratory disorders like asthma, chest congestion, breathing problems and spasmodic coughs.
- Known for its strong aroma, wintergreen oil improves attentiveness and stimulates the mind.
Pregnant women should consult their doctor before proceeding to use the product. It should be kept away from children and not used in aromatherapy. The oil is quite poisonous and should only be used in small quantities added to carrier oil or other preparation before using.