For a long time there have been reports that the aroma of peppermint can improve exercise performance. It alters perception of how hard you are working out making the exercise seem less strenuous, slower paced and easier to complete.
In March 2013 a study was performed on the actual intake of peppermint oil. In a recent study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, researchers looked at the effect of peppermint oil on exercise performance. In the study males drank 500ml of water with 0.05ml of peppermint oil consumed each day for ten consecutive days. They tested participants before and after peppermint consumption for various indicators of cardiovascular performance.
The extent that peppermint consumption improved performance was considerable. The oil improved exercise performance, respiratory function, blood pressure, heart rate, and respiratory gas exchange. It also reduced resting blood pressure and heart rate. The amount of total work performed by the test subjects was increased by 51%, including an increase in the time to exhaustion of about 25%. So not only did the subjects go for a quarter longer than they did without the peppermint oil, their work rate per unit time was higher too. In other words, they went faster for longer.
Aromatherapy and oils have been used for centuries and are generally regarded as safe, however as with any supplements you must ensure you seek a professionals view before using essential oils as they can be contraindicated in some medical conditions.
This article is intended for information only.