Catnip or Cat Mint is presented as a whitish-grey plant. Its scientific is Nepata Cataria. As its name implies, it involves cats with its minty aroma. It stimulates cats and gives them a hair-raising experience. Catnip Essential Oil also has a lot of health benefits being a carminative, anti-spasmodic, diaphoretic, nervine, emenagogue, stomachic, astringent, stimulant and sedative substance.
Catnip is a popular medicinal herb used in treating ailments. The components of Catnip that makes it potent are: Nepetalactone, Geraniol, Valeric Acid, Monoterpene, Citral, Nepetalic Anhydride, Limonene, Dispentine, Thymol, Caryophyllene, Citronella, Nerol, Nepetalic Acid, Bio Flavonoids and carotenoids. The popularity of Catnip surpasses its effects on cat’s behavior because of its therapeutic benefits. Catnip Essential Oil, an extract of the Nepeta Cataria or catnip plant is from the mint family. It grows as a wild weed and is found in herb gardens. The extract is orange or pale yellow in color and has a minty aroma.
Catnip Essential Oil Benefits
Catnip Essential Oil benefits include:
- Helps in treating Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease
- Provides relief and cure to acidity and stomach disorders
- Regulated menstruation
- Helps in treating respiratory and muscular cramps
- Removes toxins and promotes sweating
- Cures insomnia, anxiety and tension
- Helps in weight loss and promotes urination
Catnip Essential Oil Uses
- Catnip Essential Oil as Anti-Spasmodic. Catnip Essential Oil cures all kinds of cramps whether it is muscular, respiratory, intestinal or other parts of the body. It effectively relaxes the muscles and cures spasmodic cholera. It is anti-spasmodic and cure problems related to spasms and cramps.
- Catnip Essential Oil as a Carminative. Carminative is a property that assists in removing gas from intestines. Gas trapped in intestines is pushed upwards and could be fatal. It gives you a choking feeling, indigestion, causes chest pains and uneasiness. It also causes stomach pain and raises blood pressure. Catnip Essential Oil helps by moving the gasses downward and prevents additional gases from forming. It is a very good cure for chronic gas trouble.
- Catnip Essential Oil as Diaphoretic. Catnip Essential Oil induces profuse sweating and helps in reducing your weight. It also reduces the blood pressure, removes excess salts and toxins, keeps the heart healthy and removes fevers.
- Catnip Essential Oil as Emenagogue. Catnip Essential Oil stimulates hormone secretions and assists in regulating menstrual cycles. It eases cramps, relieves menstrual pain and helps people with irregular and obstructed menses.
- Catnip Essential Oil as Nervine. Catnip Essential Oil cures several nervous disorders that includes shaking limbs or hands, vertigo, nervousness, Alzheimer’s disease, convulsions, Parkinson’s disease, sluggishness and the lack of reflexes. It strengthens and activates the nerves.
Catnip Essential Oil Side Effects
- May stimulate the uterus and cause miscarriage. It stimulates menstruation so it’s not for use for women suffering from pelvic inflammatory diseases. It makes menstruation heavier and could worsen heavy menses. Catnip Essential Oil should not be used by pregnant women, breastfeeding moms and children.
- Could cause skin irritation. Consult with a doctor before using and take a patch test first before applying directly to the skin.
- Has diuretic effects. It’s not a good mix with diuretic medications.
- Has sedative effect. It must not be taken along with sedatives.
- Has adverse interactions with lithium. It alters how the body expels lithium and increases the lithium amounts in the body.
How to Use Catnip Essential Oil
- In medicine. Catnip Essential Oil is proven to contain astringent and antibiotic properties.
- As an insect repellent. The oil is effective as a mosquito repellant and is a common ingredient in insect repellents and pesticides. It also combats termites, cockroaches, deer ticks and dust mites. The setback is its short shelf life.
- In a diffuser. The oil is compatible to mix with other oils like lemon, mint, lime, eucalyptus, citronella, myrrh and geranium oil. Mix a few drops of this oil with any of the essential oils mentioned above and place these in a diffuser.
How to Make Catnip Essential Oil
The usual way to create Catnip Essential Oil is by steam distillation of its flower, leaves and buds.
- Collect the stems and leaves of the catnip plant. Chop them finely to expose more of the plant’s surface area.
- Using a casserole dish, cover its bottom with the cut up plant. Immerse the plants in olive oil.
- Heat the casserole at 200 degrees F for 2 – 3 hours slowly in the oven.
- Cool to room temperature. Then strain the leaves and put the oil in the refrigerator until it is needed for use.
Catnip Essential Oil Recipe
Recipe for Catnip Essential Oil Insect Repellent
- Distilled water
- 1 cup of rubbing alcohol or Witch hazel
- 3 to 4 tbsps of the following dried herbs: peppermint, citronella, spearmint, lemongrass, catnip, and lavender
- Boil a cup of water then add a combination of 3 to 4 tbsps of all the dried herbs. You can use 1 tbsp of each herb: catnip, spearmint, peppermint and lavender, then add 2 dried cloves.
- Mix them well then cover. Let it cool while covered.
- Strain the herbs then mix with 1 cup of rubbing alcohol or witch hazel.
- Place it in a spray bottle and store in the fridge or a cool place.
- Use when needed.
It has a nice smell and it is very refreshing to the skin. If you want a stronger version, prepare the herbs as a tincture in an alcohol mix and use this as a spray after you strained out the herbs.
Where to Buy Catnip Essential Oil
You can buy Catnip Essential Oil in bulk at online wholesalers like eBay, Alibaba and Amazon.com. There are also online sellers for essential oils like pipingrock.com, taosherb.com, mercola.com, fromnaturewithlove.com and others. You can buy them from aromatherapy shops as well.
More Information on Catnip Essential Oil
- Mixes well with lime, lemon, mint, myrrh and eucalyptus oil. It also mixes well with grapefruit, lemon, lavender, marjoram, orange, peppermint, spearmint and rosemary.
- Cures dyspepsia, colic, flatulence and migraine.
- Nepetalactone is an insect repellant property and drives away mosquitoes, cockroaches, and other insects.
- Thymol, a Catnip Essential Oil component, is proven with antiseptic properties. It is used as a training aid for cats and in reducing anxiety.