• Catnip
  • Leonotis leonurus

Health Benefits

Leonotis leonurus has become a popular herbal remedy for many health benefits including its ablity to help support and alleviate symptoms of anxiety. The decoction of dried leaf or root is also used as an external wash to treat itchy skin and eczema as well as alleviating pain of bites and stings. Internally, the tea of the dried leaves is taken to treat headache, bronchitis, high blood pressure, the common cold as well as alleviating depression symptoms. Leaf infusions have been used to treat asthma and viral hepatitis.

The extract of Leonotis leonurus has antispasmodic effects, and is an antiacetylcholine and antihistamine. Leonotis leonurus can be used to treat irregular or painful menstruation and to improve circulation. In one experimental study, which was undertaken to investigate the anti-nociceptive, anti-inflammatory, and anti-diabetic properties of the leaf extract, it was found that the plant possesses properties that help manage or control pain, arthritis, and other inflammatory conditions, as well as adult-onset type-2 diabetes mellitus. This study gives pharmacological credence to South African folkloric uses of the plant (University of KwaZulu-Natal 2005).

Antinociceptive, antiinflammatory and antidiabetic effects of Leonotis leonurus (L.) R. BR. [Lamiaceae] leaf aqueous extract in mice and rats. Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa, 27(4): 257-64, 2005.

The part of catnip that is used the most is the flowers. Catnip is used for trouble sleeping (insomnia); anxiety; migraine and other headaches; cold and other upper respiratory infections; flu; swine flu; fever; hives; worms; and gastrointestinal (GI) upset, including indigestion, colic, cramping, and gas (flatulence). Some people apply catnip directly to the skin for arthritis, hemorrhoids, and as a compress to relieve swelling. Some people also smoke catnip medicinally for respiratory conditions.

Catnip Uses, Benefits & Side Effects, http://www.drugs.com/npc/catnip.html.

Hops is used for anxiety, inability to sleep (insomnia) and other sleep disorders, restlessness, tension, excitability, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), nervousness, and irritability. It is also used to improve appetite, increase urine flow, start the flow of breast milk, as a bitter tonic, and for indigestion. Other uses include prostate cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, high cholesterol, tuberculosis, bladder infections, intestinal cramps, an intestinal disorder called mucous colitis, nerve pain, and prolonged painful erection of the penis (priapism). Hops is sometimes applied to the skin for leg ulcers and as an antibacterial agent. In foods and beverages, the extracts and oil are used as flavor components. Hops are also used in brewing beer. In manufacturing, the extract is used in skin creams and lotions.

Health benefits of hops, http://altmedicine.about.com/od/completeazindex/a/hops_benefits.htm.