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                                                  Brand name:                          Catnip                                                   Latin name: Nepeta cataria                          Other names: Catmint, Catswort, Field Balm                                                   A Remedy For                          Catnip is considered a useful treatment for fevers and colds, although its                       effectiveness has not been officially recognized. It is also used to ease                       cramps, and it is believed to have sedative properties that can remedy                         nervous disorders and migraine headache. Its calming effects, however,                         have yet to be scientifically verified.                                                   What It Is; Why It Works                          Regarded today as little more than a treat for the household cat, Catnip                         once enjoyed popularity as a kitchen and medicinal herb throughout                         England and France. And this common herb does, in fact, offer several                         medicinal benefits, including the ability to reduce fever, promote sweating,                       and relieve cramps. (Reports of a psychedelic effect from Catnip smoke                         are, however, inaccurate. They stem from confusion of the plant with                         cannabis.)                                                   A perennial plant often reaching a 3-foot height, Nepeta cataria is native to                       Europe, and now grows wild in the United States as well. It has a                         pleasant, mint-like aroma. The leaves and tender shoots are considered                         medicinal.                                                   Avoid If...                          No known medical conditions preclude the use of Catnip.                                                   Special Cautions                          At customary dosage levels, Catnip appears to pose no risks.                                                   Possible Drug Interactions                          No interactions have been reported.                                                 Special Information If You Are Pregnant or Breastfeeding                                                   No harmful effects are known.                                                   How To Prepare                          To make tea, use 10 teaspoonfuls of Catnip per quart of water. Steep for                         10 minutes.                                                   Typical Dosage                          Take 2 to 3 cups of tea daily.                                                   Overdosage                          No information on overdosage is available.