Do you hike? Are you someone who likes trekking through the woods? Maybe sometimes you like to cut through some thick roughage to check out something cool… like a creek or a river. Chances are you have brushed up against Stinging Nettle, if you live in the Eastern United States or Europe. You wouldn’t have forgotten it. Your skin will itch like crazy and you’ll have an overwhelming burning sensation for a few minutes. You should feel back to normal soon enough. The crazy thing is, the plant is extremely good for you. Are you aware of Stinging Nettle’s Benefits?
Nutrients… Empowering immune System Response!
If you are looking to add more natural vitamins and minerals... you have come to the right place! First things first. Everyone knows adding vitamins to your diet is a good thing. Stinging Nettle contains more vitamin A than carrots! Perfect for proper eye health and for a solid immune system.
It has vitamin C which is essential for cellular and arterial health. Vitamin K is also found in nettle. It is useful for maintaining bone and heart health. Vitamins B1, B2, B3, and B5 are also present in Stinging Nettle.
You can’t just talk about vitamins without mentioning their best friends… MINERALS. They go together like peas and carrots. Stinging Nettle contains calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and sodium.
All of your essential amino acids take up residence in Stinging Nettle. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. They also make sure that your hormonal system works properly. Cells need hormones so they can function properly. Hormones are also important for sexual health, metabolism, respiration, movement, growth, and sensory perception. They are a BIG DEAL!
Phytonutrients also take up space in nettle. They are also known as phytochemicals. There are numerous types of phytonutrients. You are probably familiar with chlorophyll and beta-carotene. It also contains lutein (a type of vitamin), zeaxanthin (a carotenoid good for the eyes), quercetin (a plant flavonoid good for inflammation), and rutin
(a bioflavonoid that works as an antioxidant).
These nutrients behave as antioxidants in your body. Antioxidants help fend off free radical scavengers which can damage your cells and lead to early cell death which is NO BUENO!. Studies have demonstrated Stinging Nettles’s ability at raising bodily antioxidant levels. This, in turn, boosts your immune system response.
Go On, Get Your Anti-inflammatory Out!
Inflammation is tightly close-knit with many chronic diseases in modern times. In fact, it is recognized as one of the most significant causes of death worldwide. Strong statement? Well, if you consider the fact, it is associated with heart disease, diabetes, and cancer (with many others). These are some biggies when it comes to death by unnatural causes.
Stinging Nettle has been used for centuries in folk medicine for its natural anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. If you are looking for a natural way to alleviate osteoarthritis or other joint pain, Stinging Nettle may be able to help.
A study published in Molecules in 2018 demonstrated that people were able to reduce their non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs when combing them with nettles. The less prescription meds, the better. It also helps if you steer towards an anti-inflammatory diet.
Just What The Prostate Ordered
Prostate health should concern a lot of men over the age of 50. This is when those pesky doctors want to set you up for a test. It sounds too much like an alien abduction scenario to me. I always turn them down and DIG DEEP into prevention. I am probably wrong, but oh well, maybe the blood work will catch a problem.
Anyway, that is why I always keep my eye open for new ways to strengthen my immune system… naturally.
The funny thing is doctors haven’t a clue to what causes an enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH), but there are ways to treat it. Well, guess what? You guessed right, stinging nettle helps treat one of the main symptoms… urinary problems.
An early warning signal is the need to relieve your bladder more frequently and having difficulty in getting the job done. Stinging Nettle has been shown to be effective in urinary tract infections and helping reduce calcium oxalate crystals which can develop into extremely painful kidney stones.
Stinging Nettle may also help slow your prostrates growth (if you have BPH). It is able to collaborate with your cells and affect your hormone levels. A study showed that those treated with nettle versus those that were only given a placebo had a more compelling reduction in their prostate size.
Stinging Nettle is commonly used in Europe for treating the symptoms of BPH. Research has shown it favorable in treating the symptoms of an enlarged prostate. No one has yet to discover which components within nettle have a POSITIVE EFFECT on your prostate health, the jury is still out. You should always consult with your physician if you think you have a problem.
Hay Fever… Play It Safe!
Seasonal allergies are a tremendous problem where I live… right smack in the middle of the Ohio Valley! Pollen is the primary rascal behind allergy season. There was a time when I was plagued by constant sinus infections. I have long since been hampered by pesky pollen invaders because of my devotion to morning algae shots.
But we are discussing Stinging Nettle, and I have just recently added it to my daily regime. It has another benefit that motivates me to consume it. However, Stinging Nettle is a holistic medicine fave for treating hay fever.
Scientists have yet to discover how nettle helps relieve allergy symptoms but some feel it is able to reduce inflammation in your body. Research has shown nettle as being able to disrupt your body’s histamine production.
Histamine is the source behind all the well-known allergy symptoms… inflammation… sinus issues… itching… headaches. Substances such as pollen induce your body to produce histamine. You are probably familiar with anti-histamines being used for sinus issues.
Blood Pressure… Endless Fun
Heart disease kills more people before their time than anything else. Untreated, it can lead to a heart attack or a stroke. So, if you have high blood pressure, this is an indication that something has gone wrong in your body.
Many things can cause high blood pressure. The primary reason is poor food choices. My blood pressure was getting too high a few years ago. My other vitals were also heading for the dog house. I made a quick decision after running into some research about whole-food plant-based diets. My health immediately turned around… just by changing my diet.
I am not trying to convert anyone to how I eat. We all have choices. What I am saying… MY HEALTH TURNED AROUND IMMEDIATELY!… along with countless others who have chosen to eat natural foods.
We live in a world obsessed with junk food. Processed food is man-made. It is not natural! It is full of sodium... table salt… which means the salt we most commonly use is processed as well. Sodium is entrenched in most processed foods. It is sooo bad for your system.
Fat is also a major health violator. Animal fats clog up your arteries and raise your blood pressure. Fat is the main culprit behind diabetes. Diabetes supposedly leads to high blood pressure, but I suspect the underlying factor is the fats not diabetes itself. This is well documented in the China study.
So if you’re not one to give up eating for pleasure, you got to find some other means to bring down your ole’ blood pressure. Stinging Nettle has been traditionally used to treat high blood pressure. Nettle is a popular plant used in Western herbal medicine.
Some test-tube and animal studies have indicated several ways nettle help lower blood pressure. First of all, it may stimulate nitric oxide production. This helps your blood vessels relax and dilate which helps lower your blood pressure.
Also, stinging nettle compounds may behave as calcium channel blockers. This helps expand your arteries and relax your heart. People can use nettle as a diuretic. To make you pass urine more often. This should help you pass more water in your urine and help lower your blood pressure.
Change Your Whole Blood Sugar
Diabetes is a partner in crime with heart disease. Zapping the lives of many humans worldwide WAY TOO SOON! Food again is behind the scenes challenging multitudes of lives by polluting the bloodstream. I will stick to my guns. A WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED DIET is a pathway to freedom. GOOGLE IT… BING IT… or whatever, if you’re curious.
Most people desire short cuts in life… and sitting around like a frog on a log. Certain foods can help lower blood sugar. Apple cider vinegar does the trick, or find a good source of amla fruit powder. But gaining attention is an old-time fave from traditional folk medicine… stinging nettle… which also support healthier blood sugar levels.
Studies have shown stinging nettle has helped improve hyperglycemia by helping to restore insulin levels. There was a study done over a three-month period with 46 people. They were given 500 mg of stinging nettle extract three times a day. The participants showed significantly lower blood sugar levels compared to those who were given a placebo.
There is some solid supporting evidence in stinging nettle’s effectiveness in lowering blood sugar. If you have diabetes, it would be to your best advantage to do everything possible in controlling your blood sugar. Diabetes, when left unchecked, has a devastating effect on your health. You don’t want to go there. So put down those Twinkies!
All You Need Is Digestion
Let’s face it. Most people don’t really think twice about what they eat. If you are reading a post like this, I imagine you have broken loose from the herd. People who see how I eat are constantly snickering and saying they would never eat that way, and you can bet the ones that say that are grossly overweight and don’t seem to healthy.
There are so many chemicals and additives in processed foods. The sad thing is most people just ignore reading the label or ordering from restaurants and trusting that they hold your best interests at heart. Very few restaurants spend the extra money to ensure they are using all-natural ingredients without preservatives.
Put it simply, you are eating manufactured foods in many cases. Your body doesn’t know what to do with these fake foods. Some of these items become free radicals and harm your cells. Your stomach doesn’t know how to process them. Your stomach is designed to handle food from nature… whole food.
Our grocery stores and drug stores are full of anti-acids or fiber supplements to handle some of these unnatural foods that are eaten in multitudes. Inflammation occurs when your body is trying to counter-attack things that don’t belong in your system. Inflammation is behind almost every chronic disease plaguing mankind.
Exorbitant inflammation impedes your digestive process. Harmful bacteria grow out of control in your digestive tract. You will probably get sick more. Changing to a whole-food plant-based diet will work wonders and turn your digestive problems around… if you have them… or maybe you aren’t in tune with your body.
Stinging nettle has awesome anti-inflammatory powers. It is better for you than drug store chemicals. It can help you go regular in your digestive process. Constipation, diarrhea, and upset stomach can be reduced. However, if you switch to a whole-food plant-based diet, it will clean your system out and you will get a temporary case of diarrhea. This also happens when you use colon cleansers.
Nettle may help promote healthy bacteria which will go to bat for you and help you straighten out your digestive issues. Having a healthy gut can help protect you from a host of diseases. Keeping a healthy gut helps you age more gracefully.
There Is No Life Without Nettle Tea!
One of the best ways to add stinging nettle to your life is to make a nettle tea. I personally add nettle leaves to filtered water along with some green tea and bring it to a boil. I’ll let it simmer for a few minutes and pull it off the heat. I then let it sit for a bit so more of the nutrients can seep into the hot water.
Use a heaping tablespoon of nettle leaves per 8 ounces of water. One ounce of dried leaves is equal to about 4 ounces of fresh. I don’t intend to go itching through nettle fields to obtain the leaves. It doesn’t feel so nice. The leaves are pretty easy to obtain from an online store.
The tea doesn’t have a bad flavor. I drink it with green tea at times without any kind of sweetener. It isn’t bitter.
If you wish, once you pull it off the heat, you can steep the tea for up to ten hours so you can pull more of the nutrients out. Hot and cold water combinations will draw out different nutritional components from the plant. Make sure you cover up the infused nettle. You can then strain it and put it in the refrigerator (if you make a larger batch).
So what you have here is a beverage high in vitamins and minerals… all-natural… which assimilates with ease into your body. Basically a liquid salad.
Let’s Talk About Side-effects!
There is always a chance for side-effects from natural foods. Strawberries and peanuts are common foods in which some people are allergic to.
I have already mentioned at the beginning of this article how nettle can cause severe itching for a brief period. There are hair-like barbs on the stems of the plant. Trust me, it will cause a moment of distress until you find your way out of the plants… and they crowd together like penguins in Antarctica.
Nettle barbs are slightly venomous. They can inject several chemical compounds into your skin. In rare cases, a severe allergic reaction can occur which could end up being life-threatening. A similar situation can happen with a bee sting. Only a limited number of people suffer from this. So if you develop hives from whatever, you are having an allergic reaction.
Pregnant women should probably avoid nettle until delivery. It could induce contractions in the uterus. This could lead to a miscarriage.
Certain medications may have a negative reaction with stinging nettle. If you are on blood thinners or blood pressure medication, diuretics (water pills… nettle already acts like a diuretic), and lithium.
Diabetics should proceed with caution since this could lower blood sugar… especially when on insulin. Carefully monitoring and working with a physician is highly advisable.
I hope I’ve presented a strong case here for you to consider adding stinging nettle to your ongoing health program… if you have one. You really should take time out of your day for your wellness, so you can have more days… or be able to enjoy your days.
The thing that pops out for me is blood sugar control and prostate health. Diabetes is a growing worldwide concern, and I have already been bitten by that bug. The research on blood sugar looks promising, and I just need to remember to drink more nettle tea. It really doesn’t taste bad.
Prostate health declines in a huge percentage of men and should not be tread lightly. The research looks solid with regards to prostate health.
To recap some other benefits:
- antioxidant power
- offers pain relief. Serotonin and other neurotransmitters are found in the plant’s compounds.
- Acts as an antiviral and anti-bacterial
- may help decrease inflammation
- offers anti-cancer support
- digestive support
So if you’re a tea lover, mix in some nettle leaves for a healthier immune system. Nettle has an abundant source of vitamins and minerals and is a wonderfully nutritious food to add to your diet.
I am making no claims to diagnose or imply any cures by taking stinging nettle. Stinging nettle is a whole food and like many foods in nature is beneficial in regard to health. There is a lot of scientific studies backing the material in this article. There are no affiliate links on this post.
keyword Stinging Nettle’s Benefits?