The 4th February is World Cancer Day, that’s meant to raise awareness on the prevention and cure of the disease. Cancer is a group of diseases in which normal cells grow uncontrollably and abnormally, invade and spread to other parts of the body. Unfortunately, it is the second most frequent cause of death worldwide (after cardiac diseases). Currently, a variety of treatments such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy, hormone therapy and surgery, as well as newer nanotechnology and gene silencing therapy, are used in the treatment of cancer, but cause many serious side effects and often may prolong life for only a few years.
In recent years, many researchers have analysed natural products for cancer cure and prevent cancer development. Plants are a precious source of anti-cancer agents.
Nettle (Urtica dioica) is a commonly used edible plant since ancient times. Did you know that nettle is the most studied medicinal plant worldwide?
Stinging Nettle has anti-cancer properties
Various studies have recently demonstrated the cytotoxic and anti-cancer properties of nettle, in particular against colon, gastric, lung, prostate and breast cancers. The anti-cancer ability of nettle extracts provide a promising chance for the use of nettle as a nutraceutical food for the prevention and treatment of several cancers. Nettle extracts reduced adverse effects and ameliorated the efficacy of cancer chemotherapies. Stinging nettle may exert biological anti-cancer activities through various mechanisms of actions, including antioxidant and anti-mutagenic properties, induction or inhibition of key processes in cellular metabolism and ability to activate the apoptotic pathways. Beneficial compounds from nettle are used in the production of different modern anti-cancer drugs.
Don’t forget to drink a cup of nettle tea every day. “A cup of nettle a day keeps the doctor away.”