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Stinging Nettle is one of the most beneficial herbs used by many all across the world. It is known by several other names such as big string nettle, isirgan, ortiga, kazink, grote brandnetle, brennessel, common nettle, ortie, gerrais, devil’s leaf as well as urtiga.
This herb was first grown in the colder areas of Northern Asia and Europe, however, now a days you will find that stinging herb is grown commercially all around the world. Stinging nettle grows best in soil that is rich in nitrogen. Open meadows as well as not so thick wooded areas are also where stinging nettle can be found growing. Stinging herb is about two to four feet tall. It has straight and stiff stems that bear heart shaped leaves. The leaves are jagged and pointed towards the end. The flowers of stinging nettle are yellow or pink in color. The underside of leaves are completely covered in tiny and rigid hair, upon contact these hair like growth release chemical substance.
The parts of stinging herb used in treatments and herbal cures are leaves, stem as well as the roots.
The health benefits of stinging nettle are:
1. Pain: For many centuries stinging nettle is used as a herbal cure for treating pain, especially pain in the muscles as well as the joints. It is beneficial for treating pain associated with arthritis as well as gout.
2. Laxative and Diuretic: Stinging nettle herb is a natural laxative as well as a diuretic. Several studies have indicated that stinging nettle has a positive effect in the treatment of diarrhea and disorders of the urinary tract. It is also beneficial in treating prostate disorders. Studies have also shown that stinging nettle is also helpful in treating benign prostatic hyperplasia.
3. Hair: This herb is exceptionally is improving the health of the hair. If you use it directly on your hair it helps make them shinier, treat oily hair as well as reduce dandruff. Stinging nettle is also very good cure for treating baldness. Those who have started losing hair can use this herb to avoid further balding. Stinging nettle is also helpful in getting rid of lice.
4. Hay fever: Stinging nettle is a good cure in stopping the bouts of sneezes. It also eases itching caused by hay fever. Stinging nettle is considered to a good cure for hay fever as it has the ability to reduce the production of histamines in the body related to allergen.
5. Respiratory problems: stinging nettle is a helpful herb in treating respiratory problems like asthma, sinus, bronchitis as well as respiratory allergies. As said above stinging nettle is a very good histamine blocker which helps in keeping the allergies under control. Stinging nettle is used to cure rhinitis and reduce inflammation without any side effects.
6. Other diseases: stinging nettle is a helpful cure against several ailments like ulcers, inflammation of the intestines as well as hemorrhoids.
7. Bodybuilding aid: stinging nettle has 3,4-divanillyltetrahydrofuran which is a testosterone-booster. This substance helps in lowering estrogen level and increasing muscle, a good supplement for bodybuilders.
8. Cancer: some studies have shown that stinging nettle has a positive effect against some forms of cancer, even prostate cancer.
Do not take stinging nettle is you are taking medicines which are blood thinners like aspirin. This herb reduces the blood pressure, those already suffering from low BP must not take this her. Do consult your physician before taking stinging nettle.
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I’m disappointed that it wasn’t mentioned that if you happen to get into stinging nettles the remedy is to take a fresh leaf and crush it and apply it to the affected skin. Bingo. Discomfort gone. See #1: good for pain.