HERB - Fwd: hist-brewing: mint tea

Ghia ghia at netherworld.com
Fri Oct 29 12:45:25 PDT 1999

Are they saying that the pennyroyal grew near the mint and was mistakenly brewed
as mint (similar to ragweed-chamomile confusion) or that the mint plant itself
contained pennyroyal?


Bowen MacTarbh wrote:

> Greetings unto the list;
>      I thought some of you might be interested in this post to the brewing
> list. I will be more than happy to forward comments to and from the brewing
> list for those not on both lists.
>                                                   Respectfully;
>                                                   Bowen
> >From: isenhour at uiuc.edu
> >Reply-To: isenhour at uiuc.edu
> >To: hist-brewing at pbm.com (Brewmasters Histerical)
> >Subject: hist-brewing: mint tea
> >Date: Tue, 26 Oct 1999 09:49:44 -0500 (CDT)
> >
> >I have been searching hundreds of science journals trying to locate some
> >hard evidence that hops somehow effect male testosterone (nothing so far)
> >but I did run across this and thought it worth a post.
> >
> >from Pediatrics, V98, N5, pp944-947 1996
> >
> >Hepatic and neurologic injury developed in two infants after ingestion
> >of mint tea. Examination of the mint plants, from which the teas were
> >brewed, indicated that they contained the toxic agent pennyroyal
> >oil.
> >
> >METHODS: Sera from each infant were analyzed for the toxic
> >constituents of pennyroyal oil, including pulegone and its metabolite
> >menthofuran.
> >
> >RESULTS: Fulminant liver failure with cerebral edema and
> >necrosis developed in the first infant, who died. This infant was
> >positive only for menthofuran (10 ng/mL). In the other infant, who was
> >positive for both pulegone (25 ng/mL) and menthofuran (41 ng/mL),
> >hepatic dysfunction and a severe epileptic encephalopathy
> >developed.
> >
> >CONCLUSION: Pennyroyal oil is a highly toxic agent that may cause both
> >hepatic and neurologic injury if ingested. A potential source of
> >pennyroyal oil is certain mint teas mistakenly used as home remedies
> >to treat minor ailments and colic in infants. Physicians should
> >consider pennyroyal oil poisoning as a possible cause of hepatic and
> >neurologic injury in infants, particularly if the infants may have
> >been given home- brewed mint teas.
> >
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