Herb of the Month – Nettle

Stinging Nettle (Urtica Urens) – Roots, Leaves and Stems
Actions of the plant
1. Stimulant: Increases circulation to the body this includes blood and fluids. So if you were full of mucous you may want to stimulate circulation of the fluids to thin the mucous, bathing the tissues with fluids decreases inflammation as well (Elderly, diabetics, cold hands and feet)
2. Diuretic: this increases the output of urine. Remember that our kidneys remove many toxins from the body. These toxins include Uric Acid which causes gouty arthritis. (recurrent kidney and bladder infections)
3. Expectorant: This simply helps cause the expulsion of mucous and breaks up congestion similar to the stimulant actions. (colds, asthma and allergies)
4. Astringent: this means a cleanser very similar to antibiotics where you would cleanse the body of frequent illness or perhaps infection.
5. Tonic: A tonic is similar to a vitamin in simple terms you may take it for longer periods of time to nourish and improve health. (someone prone to being anemic or seasonal allergies)
6. Nervine: I noticed while typing these notes that this is not on your chart. Nettle contains Serotonin, a chemical that is vital for healthy brain function and regulates moods. Additionally, the stinging nature of the fresh plant applied in an oil base to the skin adds stimulation to the nerve endings this might be a great way to treat arthritis or neuropathy pain (caused by the nerve endings).
Medical uses and benefits of Nettles just to name a few
• A highly nutritive herb with a broad range of actions.
• Nettles have an alkalizing effect upon the body.
• Used to increase circulation.
• A specific for arthritis, rheumatism and gout
• Great for the joints.
• Used in pain and inflammation issues.
• One of the few herbs for the thyroid gland.
• A strong detoxifier of the skin.
• Being alkaline it neutralizes acids (like uric and sulfuric acids).
• Somewhat of a haemostatic (stops bleeding).
• Feeds the body nutrition, especially potassium and iron (although it is also full of minerals).
• Useful in circulation issues, somewhat of a vasodilator.
• Promotes the flow of urine and is useful for kidney stones.
• Shrinks swollen tissues.
• Excellent for pregnancy, nutrition, and for anti-abortive issues.
• Used in cases of bronchitis especially asthma, emphysema and C.O.P.D.
• Nettles are an expectorant (removes mucus) and have adaptogenic properties in aiding the body to build up immunity to allergies.
• Used for anemia.
• A great blood purifier and body regulator.

How to determine what form you would administer: (Of course muscle testing would decide)
**1 cup of tea = 2 “00” capsules = 3 (30C) homeopathics
1. Tea: As you recall teas are eagle medicine. They swoop in to treat symptoms but the actions will remain in the body to have a tonic affect as well. I encourage parents to let their children drink this perhaps sweeten with some fruit juice because it is so rich in vitamins and minerals. I would chose a tea for most conditions as it is the fastest acting especially in the case of kidney/bladder problems. Someone who is very acidic would benefit more from tea to alkalize the body, one example would be someone who gets cold sores or bladder infections frequently you would encourage tea as your first choice.
2. Capsules: A convenient way of using nettle, not everyone has the time to enjoy or likes tea. Many that are having problems with frequent urination are hesitant to drink tea thinking that it will increase the urination. Another reason I might chose a capsule is that it will work as turtle medicine similar to a vitamin or supplement so if someone is prone to low energy or low thyroid I would recommend the capsules.
3. Tincture: The tincture is very similar to the actions of the tea. Keep in mind that because of the alcohol extraction that tinctures will enter the blood stream very quickly. So the tincture may be an excellent choice for pain and inflammation or to improve circulation. Nettle tincture can be used topically as well (see oil notes below)
4. Homeopathic: the strength that I use is a 30C. This means that if I take 1 grain of nettle and transfer it energetically (electronically) to 300 liters of water this is how I arrived at that dilution. So homeopathics are the safest way to use any herb as you can see there is NO real herb involved in a homeopathic only the energetic of the herb. This is the same as Bach Flower Remedies or even using Aroma therapy. As a matter of fact if you have a stuffy head or inflammation often just holding the bag of herbs will begin to heal you! Homeopathics come in many strengths: 1X = 1 liter of water, 1C = 10 liters of water; the reason that I mention this is several times on the internet I see that people comment on how strong a 200C dosage is, scientifically that really is incorrect.
5. Oil: This is a good way to point out how “like cures like”. It is only recently that I have begun to use the nettle in oil. So with that in mind when you hold the fresh plant you will begin to have skin irritation, stinging, burning, great for skinned knees, itching and redness; often as the body tries to get rid of the histamine reactions it will cause dry scalp possibly some eczema. SO when using oil topically you would use it for those very conditions. Remember that the tincture would also work the same here but the alcohol may be a little more drying than you would like. You could muscle test! Don’t forget we will be learning about making herbal oils that can also be used for your creams and salves.
6. Cream: this has the very same affects as the oil but of course it is a much easier and cleaner way of applying.
7. Salve: When looking at the healing affects of the oils, salves of course are oil with beeswax added so if you have someone who is a magnet for mosquitoes, bites from fleas, someone who gets rashes from playing in the grass; you get the idea having some salve handy might be a great choice. I have been considering adding this one to my first aid kit.

Growing Stinging Nettle
Things You’ll Need
• Nettle seeds or plants
• Potting soil and containers
• Plastic wrap
• Shovel
• Bagged cow manure fertilizer
• Heavy garden gloves and long sleeve shirts
1. Order seeds or plant starts from a nursery; or, go dig your own if you know of a place where they grow wild. Do this in early Spring.
2 . Start seeds indoors at room temperature. Use rich potting soil and barely cover the seeds. Cover the container with plastic and put it in a warm, dark place. The seeds sprout in 7 to 10 days and can be transplanted outside about a week after germination.
3 Dig a trench or set up containers outside in partial shade. Line with cow manure or other rich organic fertilizer.
4. Transplant your started seedlings or plants outside after all frost danger has passed. Space them roughly one foot apart.
5. Water abundantly and side dress with fertilizer frequently. Nettles love cow manure as a fertilizer.

Read more: How to Grow Nettle | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_2092214_grow-nettle.html#ixzz1ffUhnF35