Peppermint Oil Capsules and IBS – Do They Actually Work?

Do peppermint oil capsules actually work for IBS? This is a question I get asked all the time.

Peppermint oil capsules are commonly recommended by doctors and dietitians. You will probably be hoping that this naturally remedy actually works and is not just a fad.

In the post I am going to explain how peppermint oil capsules work for IBS and what dose you should be taking. I will also cover any side affects that you need to be aware of.

peppermint oil capsules IBS

What Are Peppermint Oil Capsules?

Peppermint oil capsules are capsules filled with oil from peppermint leaves.

Unlike simple peppermint oil you find in the shop, the capsules have an enteric coating on them. This means that they are designed to open up once they have left your stomach.

How Do Peppermint Oil Capsules Help IBS?

You will be pleased to know that peppermint oil capsules will help your IBS symptoms!

There have been multiple studies looking into their use. These studies show that if you take peppermint oil capsules regularly in the day, they will help reduce your IBS related pain (1 , 2 , 3 ).

Peppermint oil capsules may help your other IBS symptoms but the main one showing in the research is pain.

How Do Peppermint Oil Capsules Work?

Peppermint oil contains the active ingredient methanol.

It is thought that peppermint oil capsules have several actions on your gut.

Firstly,  it works by relaxing the smooth muscle inside your gut. It does this by blocking the calcium channels (4 , 5 , 6 ).

There may also be some interactions with serotonin and opioid receptors in your gut, as well as a possible anti-microbial affect (7 , 8 , 9 ).

What Dose of Peppermint Oil Capsule Shall I Take For IBS?

I am sure you are eager to get going with this supplement. BUT, this is a difficult question to answer.

The research is really varied. Studies use a wide variety of doses, so it is difficult to advise you specifically on what will work for you.

Instead,  I would suggest you follow the manufactures guidelines and use the dose that they suggest on the packet.

Is It Safe For Me To Take Peppermint Oil Capsules?

Yes, it is safe for you to take these capsules. BUT there are a few things you need to be aware of.

Around 13% of people in studies found that they had some side affects but these were fairly minor (10 ).

Side affects you may experience from taking peppermint oil capsules (2 , 11 );

  • Heartburn
  • Dry mouth
  • Belching 
  • Rash
  • Headache
  • Increased appetite

Please be careful that you do not chew the capsules. Most people in these studies who suffered with heartburn, chewed the capsules. Remember, you want the capsule to open up once it has left your stomach.

One last thing is, we don’t yet know how safe taking these capsules are long-term. Studies currently are only around 2-12 weeks long (11 ).

Is Peppermint Tea Good For IBS?

Whilst peppermint tea will not trigger IBS symptoms, it has no proven benefit to help IBS.  It unlikely that the peppermint concentration in a tea format is strong enough.

Where Can I Buy Peppermint Oil Capsules?

Capsules can be purchased in most health food stores or pharmacies. 

Here are 3 examples of peppermint oil capsules (please note that these are affiliate links).

Colpermin IBS Relief




Peppermint oil capsules are a safe and affective way for you to prevent IBS pain. They may also help with some of your other IBS symptoms.

To take, just follow the manufacture guidelines.

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The post Peppermint Oil Capsules and IBS – Do They Actually Work? appeared first on THE IBS DIETITIAN .

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