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Nettle for menopause

18th October  World Menopause Day

The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the International Menopause Society designated  18th October as World Menopause Day. The purpose of today is to raise awareness of menopause and chronic diseases that affect women after menopause.

It’s a normal, natural part of the aging process, yet many women are still worried about going through this change. Symptoms include irregular periods, hot flashes, sleep disturbances, vaginal dryness, breast tenderness, loss of libido and mood swings. These are all the results of unevenly changing levels of hormones in the body. Both high and low levels of estrogen can cause unbearable migraines in women. Hormonal changes after menopause may bring changes in bone density too.

But there are also things to celebrate in menopause: no more periods, PMS, or worrying about unwanted pregnancies. The aim is to see this time from a perspective of new possibilities: amazing personal growth, self-awareness, greater freedom and excitement.

Healers and wise women consider stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) a reliable friend, and one of the best herbs for menopause and hormonal health. Nettle infusion strengthens the adrenals, eases anxiety, increases energy, helps prevent night sweats, builds blood, protects bones and heart. Eating cooked nettle is another excellent way to gather its benefits.

The first craft beer brewed specifically for menopausal women has been developed in New Hampshire. The beer Libeeration combines Saphir hops with herbs that herbalists claim help ease symptoms associated with hormonal shifts. The beer contains nettle, motherwort, lemon balm, chamomile, mugwort, rose, chickweed and damiana. The result is a gruit style ale that’s golden straw in color with fruity, spicy, earthy flavors. And it weighs in at more than 6 percent ABV.

Let’s raise our glasses to women!

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Nettle soup for cool evenings

It’s autumn already. Days shorten and the temperature lowers day by day. We can still find some fresh nettle in the garden or in the wild to cook something delicious and nutritious to strengthen our immune system for the winter. If all the nettle had gone to sleep by this time, we can still use dried or frozen nettle we preserved during the growing season.

Let’s cook a heartwarming soup!

Ingredients:

  • 150 g of fresh/frozen nettle leaves rinsed or 2 cups dried leaves soaked in water for a few hours
  • 20 g of ginger finely chopped
  • 1 fennel root cut in pieces
  • 1 big sweet potato cut in pieces
  • 1 onion chopped in small pieces
  • ½ leek chopped in slices
  • 1 garlic clove finely chopped
  • 1 green apple cut in pieces
  • few drops of olive oil
  • salt/pepper to taste

Preparation:

Saute the ginger, onion, leek and garlic in a few drops of olive oil until they release their pleasant smell. Add the rest of the veggies and the nettle. Stir and cover with water, then bring to boil. When your ingredients are cooked, remove from fire and blend until you have a creamy texture.

Serving suggestions:

Add some spicy olive oil and a few drops of lemon to your plate. You can grill small pieces of Pleurotus mushrooms and add them to your soup as a crispy surprise. Alternatively, you can roast some pine nuts, or sunflower seeds/pumpkin seeds, or make some crouton from your old bread.

Bon appetit!

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Nettle in the Egg

8th October 2021 World Egg Day

World Egg Day is an annual international campaign every second Friday in October that promotes the nutritional benefits of eggs in our diet and honors the farmers who care for the poultry which supply them. For centuries, eggs have played a major role in feeding families around the globe. Eggs are one of nature’s highest quality sources of protein, and indeed contain many of the key ingredients for life. The proteins contained within eggs are highly important in the development of the brain and muscles, have a key role to play in disease prevention and contribute to general well-being.

The importance of nettle in the diet of poultry

Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica), as a superfood, is not only beneficial for humans, but birds too. Filled with essential nutrients and vitamins, as well as dietary fiber, it promotes health and a balanced diet for animals. 

Did you know that nettle addition was found to substantially increase broiler skin yellowness? Chicken with yellow skin is often seen as a sign of healthy food and good quality chicken. Nettle is good for the eggs too. The widely used curcumin is not the only option for farmers to add in chicken food to promote a better color for skin and egg yolk. Wild nettle is found everywhere and is cheaper than curcumin.

Nettle supplementation increases the egg quality besides strengthening the immune system of laying hens. Yolk color is an important quality trait of eggs. Natural pigment sources are preferred by consumers. Nettle and egg are the two main essential gifts from nature.

Have you ever made a nettle omelette? This recipe is worth trying 🙂

Ingredients for the filling:

  • Fresh nettle tops, a large colander filled to the brim or dried nettle leaves soaked in water for a few hours
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, halved and cut in rings
  • Salt and pepper

Roughly chop the nettles. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the onion and let cook till it becomes translucent. Add the nettle tops, stir and cover with a lid. Cook until the nettles are wilted, season with salt and pepper and set aside.

Ingredients for the omelet per person:

  • Olive oil for frying
  • 2 -3 eggs
  • Salt and pepper
  • finely grated parmesan cheese

Beat the eggs with a fork in a bowl. Season the eggs with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a frying pan. Pour in the eggs and as the omelet begins to cook, use a spatula to draw the eggs from the side to the middle and allow the uncooked eggs to run beneath. Repeat this a few times. Sprinkle the parmesan on top and let the omelet cook till just set but still soft. Put a generous helping of the nettles on one half of the omelet and fold it over. Let the omelet slide on a plate.

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Heart Protection with Nettle

29 September 2021 World Heart Day

Today, 29 September is World Heart Day, created by the World Heart Federation to raise awareness on heart health. World Heart Day informs people around the globe that cardiovascular disease (CVD), including heart disease and stroke, is the world’s leading cause of death claiming 17.9 million lives each year, and highlights the actions that individuals can take to prevent and control CVD. It aims to drive action to educate people that by controlling risk factors such as tobacco use, unhealthy diet and physical inactivity, at least 80% of premature deaths from heart disease and stroke could be avoided.

There are many synthetic medicines available on the market, though they might cause side effects that need to be treated by other drugs and this undesired cycle goes on and on. Fortunately, modern science is rediscovering the health benefits of traditionally used herbs. Nettle (Urtica dioica) is one of the most studied medicinal plants that have the ability to positively affect the heart. 

Research has revealed that frequent consumption of stinging nettle tea can help lower systolic blood pressure and relieve tension and stress on the cardiovascular system. Nettle offers a variety of active compounds many of which also act as antioxidants inside your body.

Nettle contains vitamins and minerals that are regarded as heart protectors. The plant is a source of vitamins A and C, beta carotene, and other carotenoids. Because of its high content of vitamin C and iron, which help the body boost red blood cell (RBC) production, it may help prevent anemia. Nettle also contains the flavonoids quercetin and kaempferol, which can help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease. Nettle is a source of iron and potassium, tea made from this stinging plant may help to relax blood vessels and aid in healthy circulation.

It also helps to rebalance the body by acting as a tonic for the blood by balancing blood pH and safely flushing waste from the body. 

Enjoy a cup of tea made with fresh or dried nettle leaves. Or add a few drops of nettle tonic to your beverage to purify your blood!

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How to cure snoring naturally with nettle?

Snoring often goes unnoticed as a disease, but it is not taken seriously. Snoring is a risky habit! 75% of people who snore suffer from obstructive sleep apnea. It means their breathing gets disrupted for short periods when they sleep. This increases their risk of developing heart disease. Therefore, it is essential to treat this condition not only because of the person’s health but also because it poses risk to their marriages! In most of the cases, the spouse of a snoring partner sleeps in a separate bedroom! So, if you snore, take help of herbs.

Drinking tea – especially before falling asleep – can alleviate snoring. Nettle, lime blossom, sage and arnica should be particularly suitable. Sage is used for general respiratory problems. Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) tea is especially recommended if snoring is caused by pollen allergy. If the mucous membranes are swollen and you cannot breathe freely through your nose, nettle is a great help. Nettle leaves are a known antihistamine. When your sinus passage gets inflamed due to allergies of upper respiratory tract infections such as cold or sinusitis, you may snore a lot. Nettle leaf tea can be one of the best home remedies for snoring of such type.

Nettle leaf tea has bioflavonoids in it which opens up the sinuses and stabilizes white blood cells that make histamine. Just ensure to have dried nettle leaves for your tea.

To make nettle leaf tea for snoring, you‘ll need:

  • 1 tsp dried nettle leaf
  • 1 cup boiling water

Place the dried nettle leaves in a pot. Pour boiling water over it. Steep for 5 minutes. Strain and drink. Have 3 cups of nettle leaf tea daily.

Nettle is diuretic in nature. You may have to get up in the middle of the night to urinate.

Have a good snore-free sleep!

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Nettle for your Skin

Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) is a nutritional powerhouse. More than 100 chemical components have been identified in nettle, including minerals as well as vitamins. Nettle also contains phytonutrients: chlorophyll, beta-carotene, lutein, quercetin, all of which are incredible for hair, nails and skin. Nettle is a natural beautifier herb. 

Let’s have a closer look at how nettle can help your skin!

Nettle has antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal effects as well as powerful antioxidant abilities that decrease oxidative stress in the body. It has been shown that nettle clears acne and eczema. Nettle is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and can be exceptionally helpful in easing skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and dermatitis. It is a wonderful remedy for easing itchy skin due to its action as a natural antihistamine.

Nettle tea has been used for women to treat hormone imbalances during and after pregnancy. It is pretty common among women that the biggest and most painful pimples tend to occur right before their period, at the same time that they are sobbing over subway delays, lack of candy, and world peace. Using nettle tea as a face tonic on those annoying pimples, makes them disappear before the end of the period.

Whether drinking nettle tea, eating a nettle dish or applying straight on your skin, it is beneficial for your body anyway. If you’d like to spend a little “me-time” focusing on your face, here is an easy recipe to make your own nettle powder face mask.

Ingredients:

  • 30 g French green clay powder 
  • 10 g Nettle leaf powder 
  • 3 drops of your favourite essential oil (rosemary, lavender, sage, yarrow or tea tree oil)
  • A jar for storing

Preparation:

Combine all the ingredients together into a jar. Mix well and store it away from sunlight. Be careful with the essential oil as it can be too strong and irritating for your skin. Use only 3 drops!

Use:

Combine 1 tbsp of face powder mix with approx 1 tsp of honey, milk or water or until you get a smooth paste that spreads well on your skin. Leave on for about 5 minutes or until almost dry. Remove by applying a warm, wet flannel over the area and then pressing off gently. 

Nettle tea is a must-have in your herbal apothecary! It is a simple plant with the amazing gift of the whole person’s wellbeing.

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Nettle for your Kids

Well, the new school year has started already. Kids are forced to sit for several hours a day in school, concentrating and learning a lot of new things that hopefully they will benefit from later on in their lives. Studying can be really tiring for a young, still-developing brain, that’s why sleeping and proper nutrition are necessary.

Giving your not too small little babies – they go to school already! – an extra mineral boost with a herbal infusion works great. Nettle is filled with nutrients that a kid needs, so it’s a great choice to prepare nettle for your kids. Nettle contains so much calcium that it is an excellent remedy for growing pains in children. And everyone needs a big refuel at lunchtime, so pack this nettle infusion to their lunch. This kid-friendly hydrating and mineral-rich herbal infusion recipe is for your family: 

Ingredients:

  • 3 tsp nettle
  • 2 tsp hibiscus
  • 1 litre of water
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tsp honey 

Preparation:

Put the nettle and hibiscus at a mason jar, French Press, or teapot. Pour the cold water over the herbs and let them steep overnight. You can steep up to 24 hours if you wish. After the infusion has steeped, strain off the herbs and enjoy. You can add a squeeze of lemon and for the kids new to herbal tea you can drizzle in the raw honey. Just shake up the infusion and honey in a jar and it will dissolve.

Good herbal power for school!

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Prostate Cancer Awareness with Nettle Root

Nettle root (Urticae radix) has specific medicinal properties that are unique from those of the other parts of the plant. It contains sterols (β-sitosterol), lignans, secoisolariciresinol and polysaccharide-proteins.

The perennial roots are creeping, so nettle multiplies quickly. It is quite difficult to kill unnecessary nettles out of your garden. Nettle grows and spreads by stolons, which form a network of yellow, lateral, creeping rhizomes. These rhizomes are double-layered, consisting of an upper layer of young runners and a deeper layer of thicker, more fibrous roots.

These robust roots are easy to harvest and store, and they offer a number of medicinal uses. Nettle roots are usually harvested in autumn, before the soil hardens by winter frost. Nettle is anti-asthmatic: the juice of the roots (or leaves) mixed with honey, will relieve bronchial and asthmatic troubles. 

Nettle root was first used in urinary tract disorders in the 1950s. Stinging nettle root extract is often used in over-the-counter supplements and herbal remedies, particularly those labelled for “men’s health”.

The root extract contains β-sitosterol, a plant phenol that has been shown to reduce urinary tract complications associated with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) – the enlargement of the prostate.

Studies in people suggest that stinging nettle, in combination with other herbs (especially saw palmetto), may be effective at relieving symptoms such as reduced urinary flow, incomplete emptying of the bladder, post urination dripping, and the constant urge to urinate. These symptoms are caused by the enlarged prostate gland pressing on the urethra (the tube that empties urine from the bladder). Scientists aren’t sure why nettle root reduces symptoms. It may be because it contains chemicals that affect hormones (including testosterone and estrogen), or because it acts directly on prostate cells. 

It is important to work with a doctor to treat BPH, and to make sure you have a proper diagnosis to rule out prostate cancer.

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Nettle for your Nails

Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) is a nutritional powerhouse. More than 100 chemical components have been identified in nettle, including minerals as well as vitamins. Nettle also contains phytonutrients: chlorophyll, beta-carotene, lutein, quercetin, all of which are incredible for hair, skin and nails. Nettle is a natural beautifier herb. 

Let’s have a closer look at how nettle can help your nails!

Vitamin C is widely regarded as great for nails, so it’s great that nature provides us with nettle which contains a lot of it. Nettle also contains vitamin A, that enhances the production of keratin – the main building blocks of nails – and protects them from the destructive influence of toxins.

You can find nettle based dietary supplements in every health store to promote your nail growth and strength, but if you don’t want to spend too much money on them, you have an easy homemade option to increase nail health.

You can soak your nails in a strong nettle tea. Just brew the tea stronger than when made for drinking (add 3-4 teaspoons) and soak the nails for approximately 15 minutes once a week. You can also add oil and mix it with tea. Olive oil is an extremely moisturising and healing oil and is easily absorbed into the skin making it an excellent choice for nails. Another good choice for nails is grapeseed oil that is loaded with antioxidants, vitamin E, vitamin C, beta-carotene and vitamin D. 

After a few weeks of nettle tea and oil treatment, your nails will be beautiful, healthy, and strong.

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Beat allergies with Nettle

If you have seasonal allergies, you know they can be challenging, the symptoms can become difficult to tolerate.

Allergic rhinitis is increasingly common. Although this shares the same symptoms as hayfever, these can occur all year round rather than just through the pollen season. Allergic rhinitis can also be triggered by house dust mites, animal hair, traffic fumes, plant moulds, feathers in pillows, cleaning materials, air fresheners, perfumes, aftershaves and deodorants.

Allergies are an immune response to an otherwise harmless substance that comes into contact with cells in the mucus membranes of your nose, mouth, throat, lungs, stomach, and intestines. In a person with allergies, this ends up triggering the release of the chemical histamine. Histamine is a part of the immune system that causes all the symptoms you associate with allergies. Antihistamines block histamine activity, seeking to stop the allergic reaction.

Many allergy medications on the shelves of the drugstores work as antihistamines. But there are also certain foods and plant extracts that may similarly block the effects of histamine.

Did you know that stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) is a natural antihistamine?

If allergic rhinitis brings out itchy skin, bumpy red rashes or inflamed skin you may benefit from nettle. Nettle tea and nettle tincture are widely available. But nettle soup made from freshly harvested nettle leaves is also a great help to ease allergy symptoms.

For a nettle tea, measure one teaspoon of dried nettle to one cup of boiling water. Allow it to steep for 10 minutes, then strain and drink. 

3 cups of nettle tea a day gonna blow your allergy away! 🙂