Catnip is known by a number of names, including catswort, catmint, and even field balm. It's a perennial in the mint family that's best known for its ability to drive cats wild, but before you use all your catnip on kitty, consider the medicinal uses for catnip that you might be able to take advantage of.
Catnip contains nepetalactone, a natural sedative that can help you relax and get to sleep at night. It's also a muscle-relaxer and antispasmodic that can be used to treat stomach cramps. It may even help lessen the symptoms of migrane.
The next time you're having trouble settling in for the night or your stomach is bothering you, try a cup of catnip tea. I'm sure kitty won't mind sharing a little of his stash with you.
Catnip Tea Recipe
1 tsp. Catnip leaves (dried)
6 oz. Boiling water
Pour boiling water over dried catnip leaves and let steep for five to seven minutes.
I usually add a pinch of dried lemon balm to my catnip tea. Lemon balm has a mild lemony flavor that's a nice compliment to catnip. A little honey is nice too.