To know nettles is to be dazzled by its profound virtues and its wide array of uses. Often mistaken for a weed (as many medicinal plants are), nettle – AKA stinging nettle – has been used for thousands of years around the world to holistically treat all kinds of ailments. It's important to keep in mind that they are called "stinging" nettle for a reason. It's best to completely dry nettle or process nettle with heat (by cooking, boiling, etc.) before using, or she will getcha!
Here are our top 3 favorite uses for nettles, especially as we prepare for spring:
Fight Allergies – Spring brings a return to life in many ways. Trees and flowers are bursting with new growth and blooms, and the days become sunnier and longer. But for those with seasonal allergies, spring can be a miserable time. Nettle is a natural antihistamine and works to improve the body’s resistance to pollens, molds, and other environmental pollutants. Compounds have been found in nettles that help combat the inflammation and reactivity of allergy sufferers. Enjoy as tea!
- Eat Your Vitamins – Few plants are as nutrient dense as nettles are. They are packed with protein, chlorophyll, vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin A, C and K, iron, silica, potassium, iodine, magnesium, and calcium. Add a handful of nettles to soups, stir-fries, pastas (hello nettle pesto!), and other savory dishes. Or simply enjoy as a tea regularly for a nutritious boost.
- Hair & Skin Tonic – Thanks to its antihistamine, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and pain-relieving properties, nettle has a long history of being used to treat skin irritations like eczema and acne. You can drink nettle tea, or apply the tea directly to the skin. Using nettle tea topically can also naturally cleanse the skin and scalp. By improving scalp circulation, it gives your hair follicles a chance at growth and doubles as a natural astringent for oily hair and scalp!
As always, we encourage you to take caution when using nettle or any other medicinal herbs!