A few days ago, a friend of mine, let’s call him Andy, told me he had the flu. So I gave him some peppermint tea and catnip tea leaves. The next day he was remodeling his bathroom. He said he felt amazing and asked if there was “anything else in that tea that I should know about?” I told him “no”, it was 100% peppermint and catnip. Nothing added and those two plants do not have any drugs, such as caffeine or ephedra, in them.
I am a big tea lover. Caffeinated and herbal, I love tea. I literally drink several cups of some sort of tea every day. I like coffee a lot also, but I love tea. The reason being is because of the variety, the simplicity, the low cost, and the health benefits that can be found in tea.
All the teas that have caffeine come from the same plant, camilla sinensis – white, green, orange and black, they all come from the same plant. There are different ways to grow and process them to give the different flavors, but they all start as the same plant.
However, I’d like to keep my focus on the herbal tea I gave my friend – peppermint and catnip. Why did I mix those two? First off, many of you have probably heard me suggest peppermint tea as a treat when craving something sweet. I find it takes the edge off the hunger by giving the mouth something a little sweet, the body a hot liquid that relaxes it, and the menthol acts to both stimulates the mind and relax the body. I like to add catnip to give the flavor and mouth-feel a little more body then the peppermint has by itself, plus the reasons you will read below.
The Health Benefits of Peppermint Tea
- Relieves Stress – the menthol is a natural muscle relaxant. This will not only relieve feelings of anxiety, but help you fall asleep as well. It has been proven to encourage a more restful sleep and as a bonus it gives more vivid dreams.
- Sinus Relief – it is a natural decongestant, plus the warm liquid helps clear the sinuses and both soothe the throat.
- Weight Loss – It is slightly sweet and can be used in place of a desert, is a natural appetite suppressant, mixing with green tea will amplify this effect. The menthol flavor/sensation left in the mouth deters the desire to eat more. Plus, often when people want to eat something, they are actually dehydrated so drinking a cup of peppermint tea can satisfy many needs for the body and mind.
- Stomach Issues – Peppermint is a natural remedy for upset stomach, bloating, IBS, gastric emptying disorder, and indigestion of various causes.
- Skin – Peppermint can help clear up hormonal skin problems.
- Mouth Benefits – Peppermint has been shown to be superior to the mouthwash chemical chlorhexidine in inhibiting the formation of biofilm formations linked to dental cavities.
- Allergies – Peppermint also is a histamine blocker and can decrease the effects of hay fever.
- Memory – the scent of peppermint has been shown to increase memory and alertness.
- Plus: reduce headache pain, asthma, improve skin and hair, and works as an anti-inflammatory and free radical scavenger.
With all that going for it, why not drink peppermint? But, mix catnip with is and see what you get. Keep reading.
Catnip has the Following Health Benefits
- Reduces anxiety
- Improves sleeping
- Relieve migraines and headaches
- Relief of cold, flu and upper respiratory symptoms
- Relieves GI issues
- Can be used topically for: Arthritis, hives, and hemorrhoids
If you mix these two together they make a powerful “medicine”. Plus, they taste good. The peppermint tea is good by itself, but I like the catnip with it to give it a little body, a little more depth.
I prefer loose leaf tea because I can mix different herbs together for taste, benefits, and quantities. Plus, I find them fresher and more potent. There is a really great place in Eugene, Oregon called Mountain Rose Herbs. I buy all my herbs there and most of my teas. (Plus they have oils, lotions, butters, herbs and spices, and many other things that I don’t use. And, the prices are very reasonable.) I love these guys.