Botanical: Urtica dioica
Other common names: stinging nettle, devil’s leaf, net plant, dwarf nettle, great stinging nettle.
Nettle has been used for centuries to nourish and strengthen the urinary tract. Long used as a diuretic, it cleanses the entire system by promoting the flow of urine and also aids kidney and bladder function. The herb is used to expel gravel from the bladder, flush toxins from the system and combat urinary tract infections. In the specific case of men’s health, the herb has been helpful in alleviating benign prostatic hyperplasia. The fact that Nettle root affects hormones and proteins that carry sex hormones (such as testosterone or estrogen) in the human.
As an anti-inflammatory, Nettle appears to inhibit the manufacture of prostaglandins, which may cause inflammation, and has thus been helpful in easing neuralgia, sprains, tendinitis, sciatica, arthritis, rheumatism and gout. The herb is also thought to purify the blood and neutralize and prevent the crystallization of uric acid, further helping to alleviate inflamed arthritic joints, gout and rheumatism. As an astringent, Nettle has been effective in stopping external (with topical use) and internal bleeding. It helps reduce menstrual flow, uterine and internal hemorrhage, blood in the urine, diarrhea and dysentery. The herb’s astringency also shrinks inflamed tissues and helps to alleviate hemorrhoids.
Nettle is a nutritive that has been used for centuries as a tonic that nourishes and detoxifies the entire system. A an iron-rich herb, Nettle is considered beneficial for anemia by building red blood cells, and its high vitamin C content.. ensures that the iron will be absorbed by the body. Nettle is also mineral and vitamin rich and is good for debilitated conditions. Nettle is used to cleanse the digestive tract, promote healthy digestion and ease stomach problems.
Nettle is said to be a fine circulatory stimulant, opening blood vessels and increasing blood circulation throughout the body, This circulatory action is believed to uplift a weary body and relieve fatigue and exhaustion. The iodine content in Nettle is said to stimulate and improve thyroid function and is thought to be helpful in treating goiter. Nettle is a well-known folk remedy for allergy relief, including hay fever and other allergies. It helps to relieve inflammation caused by allergic reactions and clears congestion from the nose and chest.
It is considered an expectorant that expels phlegm from the stomach and clears mucus from the lungs, which is helpful in cases of respiratory problems. Used externally, modem herbalists use Nettle as a hair tonic and growth stimulant and also an anti-dandruff shampoo. Nettle tea is also considered an effective hair tonic that may bring back the natural color of the hair.
A poultice made of the leaves alleviates pain due to inflammation, and the dried powdered leaf is said to stop nosebleed. As a wash, Nettle is good for burns, eczema, insect bites and wounds. although Nettle is a stinging plant, it is sometimes used in cosmetics as a facial. Nettle tea is an old-fashioned remedy for fever, colds and grippe, and has often been used to relieve backache. Nettles are said to have a variety of healing properties, affecting different parts of the body. First and foremost, they are considered wonderful nutrition, which provides a first-rate form of energy. Special notice is the high calcium content in the plant, particularly when taken raw, which can be indispensable in certain conditions, especially tuberculosis and lymphatic congestion.
The herb is also much employed for problems in the urinary and elimination systems, especially for mucus problems thereof It is good for blood in the urine and for incipient edema, although it doesn’t rank with other herbs, such as parsley, for established edema. It is said to gently loosen the bowels, although a decoction of the plant can be used for chronic diarrhea. It is good for hemorrhoids when taken internally. It has been employed for gravel in the kidneys and for kidney infections generally. It can be used for water retention, the plant is said to be good for digestion and assimilation generally. It is said to help the absorption of organic minerals when taken over a period of time. It is thus considered good for reducing.
“Grieve relates the case of a man, diabetic, who took a diet of young Nettles for three days as well as drinking a brew of them. He lost much weight and vastly improved his condition”. The plant is said to influence the secretions of the body generally, especially influencing bleeding. Most sources agree that it is an excellent and safe styptic.
It is said to check internal hemorrhages taken as tea internally as well as applied externally as a wash for external bleeding-Some even recommend pulping the leaves and applying this over the wound, although the application should not stay on too long, so as to prevent irritation. The powdered root can be used for the same purpose even if someone is spitting blood..
Interestingly the herb is widely recommended for use in rheumatic conditions. “A woman with chronic rheumatism in her legs was gathering berries, and found herself annoyed to be continually brushing her legs against stinging Nettle. However. Much to her surprise, the pains in her legs rapidly and dramatically diminished, and she remained much freer from her trouble from that day forth”. Some have recommended using the method of flagellation that is, striking the affected parts with the herb.
The herb is often recommended for back pain, in particular for sciatica. In Germany, a decoction is taken internally and a poultice applied externally for neuralgia, while in other localities, a decoction is taken internally.