Also known as catmint, catnep, catswort and field balm.
Catnip is a nice herb to have around for cats and you.
Catnip will excite cats but has an opposite effect on humans.
In humans catnip helps to soothe the nerves and the digestive system.
The leaves of catnip have traditionally been chewed as a remedy for alleviating toothaches. The inhabitants of Southern Appalachia have used it since the eighteenth century as a remedy for cold. Tea made from catnip has been used to relieve intestinal cramps and gas discomforts. Recent researches show that consumption of teas containing catnip has anti-cholinergic effects.
Catnip has been used for relief of insomnia and prevention of nightmares, and has amild anti-spasmodic effect and is used to treat cramps. The juice from the leaves was used to stimulate menstrual flow. It has been used in the treatment of children’s ailments, such as colicky pain, flatulence and restlessness. The herb has also been used asa cold remedy, for hives, as a diaphoretic, a refrigerant and an anodyne.
Due to this ability to promote relaxation, catnip may also be used to help lessen migraine headaches.
On the skin, catnip may reduce swelling associated with arthritis, hemorrhoids, and soft tissue injuries, such as bruises, when it is used as a topical poultice. A poultice is usually a soft cloth that has been soaked in a medication, possibly heated, and applied to an aching or injured area of skin surface. Recent laboratory studies have shown that catnip may contain antibacterial and antiviral substances, but the effects of these components need further study to be proved.
Some recent research on Catnip show that Catnip oil may have a future in termite control. Recent experiments by SRS researcher Chris Peterson show that catnip oil repels and even kills termites in a laboratory setting. Peterson, an entomologist with the SRS Wood Products Insect Research unit in Starkville, MS, and fellow researcher Janice Ems-Wilson, a chemist at Valencia Community College in Orlando, FL, presented the results of their research at the national meeting of the american Chemical Society held in New Orlean. Perhaps planting catnip around wooden porches or old barns may prevent a termite infestation? Looks promising