How Nettle Tea Helps Your Health

November 12, 2012

How Nettle Tea Helps Your Health

Nettle tea is an acquired taste unless you like vegetables like spinach or green cabbage. Then you’ll find this herbal tea to be a refreshing change from other beverages. Despite the occasional sting when harvesting the top tips of nettle plants, fresh nettles makes for a better tasting tea. You can also eat the cooked nettles. If you can’t get fresh nettles, then use dried nettles or commercially made nettle tea bags.

Making Fresh Nettle Tea

Substitute a cup of this tea for a cup of coffee or a fizzy drink can help reduce your daily calorie and sugar consumption. It makes a great beverage paired with savory foods. Try adding lemon juice before adding any honey or other sweetener. Some people prefer their drink their nettle tea straight.

When gathering fresh nettles, use only nettles free from pesticides or car exhaust fumes. If you are not sure of what came into contact with the nettles, do not use them. Wear gloves when gathering nettles. The tips at the top of the plant produce the best flavor of tea, but leaves near the top can also be used. These tips tend to be a lighter color than the rest of the plant. Boil the nettles for ten minutes. Boiling will kill the sting. Drink as a hot beverage or over ice.

As a Cold Compress

Nettle tea is useful even if you do not want to drink it. It can help reduce swelling, especially for piles or hemorrhoids. Make the tea but let it cool off. Use a clean washcloth to soak up the tea. Wring out any excess. Press the cool nettle tea soaked cloth to your sore behind. Use as necessary.

Cold compresses made of this herbal tea are also used as a home remedy for swelling of the joints to help reduce swelling, but there has not been conclusive proof that nettle tea can help reduce swelling die to rheumatoid arthritis. Since it is known to act as a diuretic, the theory is that nettle tea compresses can help the body expel excess fluid in the joints.

Other Uses

Some people with dandruff problems like to use this herbal tea as a final hair rinse after shampooing.

This tea is sometimes recommended for people to prevent the formation of kidney and bladder stones or to maintain good urinary tract health. Because it can make you urinate more often, avoid this tea if you have been diagnosed with decreased kidney function.

Nutrients

Nettle tea contains these nutrients:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin K
  • Calcium
  • Potassium
  • Iron
  • Flavonoids

Caution

Some people are allergic to nettles. If you have never eaten cooked nettles or drunk nettle tea before, consume only a little bit and wait 24 hours to see if you get any allergic reactions like hives, itchy skin or problems breathing. If these things occur, you have a nettle allergy.

For those not allergic to nettles, drink only one cup of tea on the first day or you may get diarrhea. Gradually increase to three cups per day.

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