Peppermint oil is an ingredient used in a variety of natural health products and is not an approved medication.

Generic Name
Peppermint oil
DrugBank Accession Number

Extracted from the stem, leaves, and flowers of Mentha piperita L. plant, peppermint oil (Mentha piperita) is a popular essential oil used in aromatherapy for both external and internal use. Mentha piperita is a hybrid of spearmint (Mentha spicata) and water mint (Mentha aquatica) 6. Medicinal use of herbal ingredients such as peppermint oil has a long history of treating digestive disorders and upper respiratory symptoms and cough 2. There are various over-the-counter and commercial uses of peppermint oil due to its carminative, cholagogue, antibacterial, secretolytic, and choleretic actions 3. Peppermint oil contains pulegone, which is a naturally-occurring pesticide 7. Other active constituents of peppermint oil include Menthol, menthone, cineol, and several other volatile oils 2,3.

Peppermint oil is used as a flavouring agent in foods and fragrance in hygienic or cosmetic products, and as an anti-itch and cooling agent in topical pharmaceutical products. It is also an active ingredient in topical analgesics for the relief of joint and muscle pain. Peppermint oil can be applied topically to temporarily relieve tension-type headache. The use of peppermint oil in the management of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) has been investigated in many clinical studies due to its relaxing effects on smooth muscle; however the evidence supporting this use is unclear. Due to its effectiveness in relaxing GI smooth muscle but ability to induce gastroesophageal reflux, enteric-coated formulations of peppermint oil has been established which bypass the upper GI tract unmetabolized, thereby facilitating its effect in the lower GI tract without effects in the upper tract 2. Peppermint oil is safe and well-tolerated at commonly recommended dosage 2.

Approved, Investigational
  • English black mint oil
  • Mentha crispa oil
  • Mentha dumetorum oil
  • Mentha piperita (peppermint) leaf water
  • Mentha piperita (peppermint) oil
  • Mentha piperita flowering top oil
  • Mentha piperita oil
  • Mentha X piperita oil
  • Menthae piperitae aetheroleum
  • Oil of peppermint
  • Pepermint oil
  • Peppermint american far west bulked
  • Peppermint american willamette natural
  • Peppermint flowering top oil
  • Peppermint indian rectified
  • Peppermint oil america
  • Peppermint oil mongolia
  • Peppermint oil yakima
  • Peppermint volatile oil
External IDs
  • FEMA No. 2848



Indicated for the over-the-counter use for:

-the symptomatic relief of minor spasms of the gastrointestinal tract, flatulence and abdominal pain, especially in patients with irritable bowel syndrome.

-the temporary relief of itching associated with insect bites, eczema, minor burn, sunburn, minor skin irritations, minor cuts, scrapes, atopic dermatitis and other skin disorders.

-the temporary symptomatic relief of mild joint and muscle pain as a local topical analgesic.

-the temporary relief of tension-type headache.

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Associated Conditions
Contraindications & Blackbox Warnings
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Peppermint oil induces a dose-related antispasmodic effects on the gastrointestinal smooth muscles 3. A meta-analysis study and additional clinical studies of patients with IBS demonstrated that the treatment with peppermint oil improves abdominal symptoms compared to the placebo group, resulting in reduced severity of abdominal pain, decreased abdominal distension, reduced stool frequency, and reduced flatulence 2,4. The use of enteric-coated peppermint oil was shown to be effective in reducing gastrointestinal symptoms of non-ulcer dyspepsia 2. In rats, peppermint oil promoted a time-dependent choleretic effect in increasing bile production and biliary output 3. In randomized controlled trials, topical application of peppermint oil was associated with a significant analgesic effect and a reduction in headache intensity compared to placebo 2. In a study of C57BL/6 mice, topical application of peppermint oil for 4 weeks was associated with a prominent hair growth effects; a significant increase in dermal thickness, follicle number, and follicle depth 1.

Mechanism of action

Dose-dependent antispasmodic effect of peppermint oil is largely mediated by its menthol constituent 3. It is proposed that peppermint oil relaxes gastrointestinal smooth muscle and attenuates contractile responses by reducing the influx of extracellular calcium ions. In rabbit jejunum smooth muscle cells investigated via whole cell clamp configuration technique, peppermint oil was shown to inhibit the potential-dependent calcium currents in a concentration-dependent manner 3. Both a reduction in peak current amplitude and an increase in the rate of current decay were observed, indicating that the pharmacological activity peppermint oil resembles that of dihydropyridine calcium antagonists 3. In a rat small intestine study, peppermint oil in the intestinal lumen inhibited enterocyte glucose uptake via a direct action on the brush border membrane and inhibited intestinal secretion 3. There is also evidence that menthol is an antagonist of L-type Ca2+ channels via interacting with dihydropyridine binding sites and blocks the currents of low-voltage-activated calcium channels 3. Peppermint oil may facilitate hair growth by promoting the conservation of vascularization of hair dermal papilla, which may contribute to the induction of early anagen stage of active growth phase of hair follicles 1.


After oral administration, peppermint is rapidly absorbed 3. Menthol is highly fat-soluble therefore rapidly absorbed from the proximal gut 5.

Volume of distribution

No pharmacokinetic data available.

Protein binding

No pharmacokinetic data available.


The predominant biliary metabolite of peppermint oil is menthol glucuronide, which undergoes enterohepatic circulation 3. The urinary metabolites are products of hydroxylation at the C-7 methyl group at C-8 and C-9 of the isopropyl moiety, forming a series of mono- and dihydroxymenthols and carboxylic acids, some of which are excreted in part as glucuronic acid conjugates 3.

Route of elimination

Peppermint oil is eliminated mainly via the bile following oral administration, with glucuronide and sulphate metabolites predominant 3. The metabolites, mainly menthol glucuronide and mono- or di-hydroxylated menthol derivatives, may also undergo approximately equal renal and fecal excretion 3. Renal recovery of total menthol within 24 hours was dose-dependent whereas the recovery in bile was substantially higher over 8 hours 3.


No pharmacokinetic data available.


No pharmacokinetic data available.

Adverse Effects
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Oral LD50 value in rat is 2426 mg/kg MSDS. In fasted mice, the LD50 following oral administration was 2410 mg/kg 7. Higher doses of peppermint oil has the potential to induce menstruation, bronchospasm, tongue spasms, and, possibly, respiratory arrest 2 in addition to potential hepatotoxicity and nephrotoxicity 6.

Overdose may cause severe gastrointestinal symptoms, diarrhoea, rectal ulceration, epileptic convulsions, loss of consciousness, apnoea, nausea, disturbances in cardiac rhythms, ataxia and other CNS problems, probably due to the presence of menthol 8. In the event of overdose, the stomach should be emptied by gastric lavage. Observation should be carried out with symptomatic treatment if necessary 8. A near fatal case of high dose peppermint oil ingestion was reported, the overdose was characterized by comatose and reduced heart rate 6.

Not Available
Pharmacogenomic Effects/ADRs
Not Available


Drug Interactions
This information should not be interpreted without the help of a healthcare provider. If you believe you are experiencing an interaction, contact a healthcare provider immediately. The absence of an interaction does not necessarily mean no interactions exist.
AcenocoumarolThe serum concentration of Acenocoumarol can be increased when it is combined with Peppermint oil.
AlfuzosinThe metabolism of Alfuzosin can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
AlprazolamThe metabolism of Alprazolam can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
AripiprazoleThe metabolism of Aripiprazole can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
Aripiprazole lauroxilThe metabolism of Aripiprazole lauroxil can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
AtorvastatinThe metabolism of Atorvastatin can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
CilostazolThe metabolism of Cilostazol can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
ColchicineThe metabolism of Colchicine can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
EliglustatThe metabolism of Eliglustat can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
EszopicloneThe metabolism of Eszopiclone can be decreased when combined with Peppermint oil.
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Food Interactions
No interactions found.


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Active Moieties
PeppermintunknownV95R5KMY2BNot AvailableNot applicable
Over the Counter Products
NameDosageStrengthRouteLabellerMarketing StartMarketing EndRegionImage
Anti Itch BalmOintment0.0952 g/28gTopicalUs Organic Group Corp2013-03-29Not applicableUS flag
Anti-Bacterial StickerPatch0.25 mg/100mgTopicalYCM PRODUCTS CO., LTD2020-10-13Not applicableUS flag
Colpermin - Src 187mgCapsule, delayed release187 mg / eccOralReed & Carnrick, Division Of Block Drug Company (Canada) Ltd.1995-12-312000-06-28Canada flag
COLPERMIN CAPSULE 187mgSolution187 mgOralWELLCHEM PHARMACEUTICALS PTE LTD2004-11-04Not applicable
Colpermin Enteric Coated Cap 187mgCapsule, delayed release187 mgOralTillotts Pharma Ag1992-12-311997-07-22Canada flag
Dr Tans Pain Releiving 3 day Herabl PatchPatch0.3 g/1gTopicalGreat Loong Llc2017-05-25Not applicableUS flag
Esprit De Menthe PoivrefLiquid10 mL / 100 mLOralLab Valmo EnregistrÉ, Division Of Technilab Inc.1984-12-312000-08-24Canada flag
Luxuriant hair for solutionsLiquid0.1 g/100gTopicalBarona Co., Ltd2016-02-01Not applicableUS flag
MINTEC CAPSULESCapsule, delayed release184 mgOralบริษัท เมก้า ไลฟ์ไซแอ็นซ์ จำกัด (มหาชน)2018-04-09Not applicableThailand flag
Peppermint Essence 10%Liquid10 %OralStanley Pharmaceuticals, A Division Of Vita Health Products Inc.1965-12-312000-08-17Canada flag
Mixture Products
NameIngredientsDosageRouteLabellerMarketing StartMarketing EndRegionImage
AmolPeppermint oil (1.963 %) + Cinnamon oil (0.24 %) + Clove oil (0.1 %) + Lavender oil (0.24 %)LiquidOralAmol Pharma Gmbh1999-11-012010-03-09Canada flag
Antiphlamine Coin PlasterPeppermint oil (0.693 mg/0.2832g) + DL-alpha-Tocopherol (0.308 mg/0.2832g) + Diphenhydramine (0.246 mg/0.2832g) + Levomenthol (2.769 mg/0.2832g) + Methyl salicylate (5.541 mg/0.2832g) + Nonivamide (0.046 mg/0.2832g) + Synthetic camphor (1.108 mg/0.2832g)PatchTopicalHanul Trading Co., Ltd.2016-10-10Not applicableUS flag
Arex Sinsin PasPeppermint oil (45.46 mg/1) + Levomenthol (90.9 mg/1) + Methyl salicylate (90.9 mg/1) + Synthetic camphor (34.1 mg/1) + Zinc oxide (431.82 mg/1)PatchCutaneous; Topical; TransdermalSinsin Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.2013-07-26Not applicableUS flag
Arex Sinsin PasPeppermint oil (22.73 mg/1) + Levomenthol (45.45 mg/1) + Methyl salicylate (45.45 mg/1) + Synthetic camphor (17.05 mg/1) + Zinc oxide (215.91 mg/1)PatchCutaneous; Topical; TransdermalSinsin Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.2015-08-31Not applicableUS flag
BALSEM GOSOK CAP LANG / EAGLE BRAND BALMPeppermint oil (30.45 %) + Camphor (11.1 %)OintmentTopicalEAGLE PHARMA (M) SDN. BHD.2020-09-08Not applicableMalaysia flag
BUĞUMENTOL BUĞU, 40 GPeppermint oil (2 g) + Eucalyptol (2 g) + Levomenthol (1 g) + Turpentine (2 g)SolutionRespiratory (inhalation)DROGSAN İLAÇLARI SAN. VE TİC. A.Ş.2020-08-14Not applicableTurkey flag
Cal Mo Dol OntPeppermint oil (7.5 mg / g) + Camphor (15 mg / g) + Eucalyptol (25 mg / g) + Levomenthol (40 mg / g) + Methyl salicylate (100 mg / g) + Turpentine oil (3 mg / g)OintmentTopicalHerbes Universelles Inc.1980-12-312009-07-15Canada flag
Cellzyme ON-TOXPeppermint oil (0.089 g/100mL) + Eucalyptus oil (0.092 g/100mL) + Ferric oxide (0.084 g/100mL)CreamTopicalPHARMACAL-INTERNATIONAL. CO., LTD2017-08-16Not applicableUS flag
Cellzyme ON-TOXPeppermint oil (0.089 g/100g) + Eucalyptus oil (0.092 g/100g) + Ferric oxide (0.084 g/100g)CreamTopicalPHARMACAL-INTERNATIONAL. CO., LTD2017-08-16Not applicableUS flag
Cellzyme ON-TOXPeppermint oil (0.089 g/100g) + Eucalyptus oil (0.092 g/100g) + Ferric oxide (0.084 g/100g)CreamTopicalPHARMACAL-INTERNATIONAL. CO., LTD2017-08-16Not applicableUS flag
Unapproved/Other Products
NameIngredientsDosageRouteLabellerMarketing StartMarketing EndRegionImage
Anti Itch BalmPeppermint oil (0.0952 g/28g)OintmentTopicalUs Organic Group Corp2013-03-29Not applicableUS flag
Antiphlamine Coin PlasterPeppermint oil (0.693 mg/0.2832g) + DL-alpha-Tocopherol (0.308 mg/0.2832g) + Diphenhydramine (0.246 mg/0.2832g) + Levomenthol (2.769 mg/0.2832g) + Methyl salicylate (5.541 mg/0.2832g) + Nonivamide (0.046 mg/0.2832g) + Synthetic camphor (1.108 mg/0.2832g)PatchTopicalHanul Trading Co., Ltd.2016-10-10Not applicableUS flag
Co CoolPeppermint oil (0.01 g/100g) + Menthol (0.06 g/100g) + Pine needle oil (pinus mugo) (0.01 g/100g)LiquidNasalLydia Co., Ltd.2019-08-22Not applicableUS flag
Luxuriant hair for solutionsPeppermint oil (0.1 g/100g)LiquidTopicalBarona Co., Ltd2016-02-01Not applicableUS flag
Seeone Body RelaxPeppermint oil (0.09 g/120mL) + Vanillyl butyl ether (0.48 g/120mL)CreamTopicalRainbow Beauty Cosmetic2016-12-01Not applicableUS flag
Thera DermPeppermint oil (13 mg/240mg) + 7-Aminodesacetoxycephalosporanic acid (450 mg/240mg) + Camphor leaf oil (6 mg/240mg) + Menthol (13 mg/240mg) + Methyl salicylate 2-ethylbutyrate (28 mg/240mg)LotionTopicalManna Omni International Incorporated2017-10-31Not applicableUS flag
Thera Derm Roll OnPeppermint oil (9 mg/90mg) + (-)-menthol 1-propylene glycol carbonate (9 mg/90mg) + Camphor (4 mg/90mg) + Methyl salicylate 2-ethylbutyrate (18 mg/90mg)LiquidTopicalManna Omni International Incorporated2017-07-31Not applicableUS flag
TheraDermPeppermint oil (12 mg/120mg) + Camphor (5 mg/120mg) + Menthol (12 mg/120mg) + Methyl salicylate 2-ethylbutyrate (24 mg/120mg)SprayTopicalManna Omni International Incorporated2017-03-17Not applicableUS flag
Yumaki Original Mint ToothPeppermint oil (0.05 g/100g) + Aminocaproic acid (0.05 g/100g) + Ascorbic acid (0.005 g/100g) + Green tea leaf (0.1 g/100g) + Levomenthol (0.1 g/100g) + Water (45.15 g/100g) + Xylitol (0.1 g/100g)Paste, dentifriceTopicalJeno And Company2017-11-01Not applicableUS flag


Drug Categories
Not classified
Affected organisms
Not Available

Chemical Identifiers

CAS number


General References
  1. Oh JY, Park MA, Kim YC: Peppermint Oil Promotes Hair Growth without Toxic Signs. Toxicol Res. 2014 Dec;30(4):297-304. doi: 10.5487/TR.2014.30.4.297. [Article]
  2. Kligler B, Chaudhary S: Peppermint oil. Am Fam Physician. 2007 Apr 1;75(7):1027-30. [Article]
  3. Grigoleit HG, Grigoleit P: Pharmacology and preclinical pharmacokinetics of peppermint oil. Phytomedicine. 2005 Aug;12(8):612-6. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2004.10.007. [Article]
  4. Khanna R, MacDonald JK, Levesque BG: Peppermint oil for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2014 Jul;48(6):505-12. doi: 10.1097/MCG.0b013e3182a88357. [Article]
  5. Grigoleit HG, Grigoleit P: Gastrointestinal clinical pharmacology of peppermint oil. Phytomedicine. 2005 Aug;12(8):607-11. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2004.10.006. [Article]
  6. Nath SS, Pandey C, Roy D: A near fatal case of high dose peppermint oil ingestion- Lessons learnt. Indian J Anaesth. 2012 Nov;56(6):582-4. doi: 10.4103/0019-5049.104585. [Article]
  7. Cosmetic Ingredient Review: Amended Safety Assessment of Mentha Piperita (Peppermint)-derived Ingredients as Used in Cosmetics [File]
  8. European Medicines Agency (EMA) COMMITTEE ON HERBAL MEDICINAL PRODUCTS (HMPC): Final Community herbal monograph on Mentha x piperita L Aetheroleum [File]
PubChem Substance
Download (115 KB)

Clinical Trials

Clinical Trials
4CompletedTreatmentEpisodic Tension Type Headache1
3CompletedTreatmentAbdominal Pain / Functional Colonic Diseases / Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)1
3CompletedTreatmentIrritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)1
3RecruitingSupportive CareUpper Gastrointestinal Endoscopy1
3TerminatedDiagnosticColorectal Adenomas / Malignant Neoplasm of Colon1
2CompletedBasic ScienceAbdominal Pain / Colonic Diseases / Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) / Visceral Pain1
2CompletedTreatmentCannabis Dependence1
1CompletedTreatmentAbdominal Pain1
1Enrolling by InvitationTreatmentNausea / Suffering, Physical1
1RecruitingBasic ScienceAbdominal Pain1


Not Available
Not Available
Dosage Forms
OintmentTopical0.0952 g/28g
PatchTopical0.25 mg/100mg
SolutionRespiratory (inhalation)
Capsule, delayed releaseOral187 mg / ecc
SolutionOral187 mg
PatchTopical0.3 g/1g
LiquidOral10 mL / 100 mL
LiquidRespiratory (inhalation)
LiquidTopical0.1 g/100g
Capsule, delayed releaseOral184 mg
LiquidOral; Topical0.1 mL / mL
PatchCutaneous; Topical; Transdermal
LiquidOral10 %
StickRespiratory (inhalation); Topical0.65 g/100g
Paste, dentifriceDental
Paste, dentifriceTopical
SolutionOral2 ml/100ml
SolutionOral10 ml/100ml
Capsule, delayed releaseOral187 mg
Not Available
Not Available


Experimental Properties
boiling point (°C)215MSDS
water solubilityInsolubleMSDS


Pharmacological action
Curator comments
Evidence supporting this enzyme action is limited in the literature.
General Function
Oxidoreductase activity, acting on paired donors, with incorporation or reduction of molecular oxygen, reduced flavin or flavoprotein as one donor, and incorporation of one atom of oxygen
Specific Function
Cytochromes P450 are a group of heme-thiolate monooxygenases. In liver microsomes, this enzyme is involved in an NADPH-dependent electron transport pathway. It oxidizes a variety of structurally un...
Gene Name
Uniprot ID
Uniprot Name
Cytochrome P450 1A2
Molecular Weight
58293.76 Da
  1. A Review of the bioactivity and potential health benefits of peppermint tea (Mentha piperita L) [File]
Pharmacological action
General Function
Vitamin d3 25-hydroxylase activity
Specific Function
Cytochromes P450 are a group of heme-thiolate monooxygenases. In liver microsomes, this enzyme is involved in an NADPH-dependent electron transport pathway. It performs a variety of oxidation react...
Gene Name
Uniprot ID
Uniprot Name
Cytochrome P450 3A4
Molecular Weight
57342.67 Da
  1. Dresser GK, Wacher V, Wong S, Wong HT, Bailey DG: Evaluation of peppermint oil and ascorbyl palmitate as inhibitors of cytochrome P4503A4 activity in vitro and in vivo. Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2002 Sep;72(3):247-55. doi: 10.1067/mcp.2002.126409. [Article]
  2. Sato Y, Sasaki T, Takahashi S, Kumagai T, Nagata K: Development of a highly reproducible system to evaluate inhibition of cytochrome P450 3A4 activity by natural medicines. J Pharm Pharm Sci. 2015;18(4):316-27. doi: 10.18433/j3vk5g. [Article]

Drug created at December 03, 2015 16:51 / Updated at August 07, 2022 05:31