Nettle Leaf Tea - A Mineral/Vitamin Supplement

Discussion in 'Vegetables, Grains, Legumes, Fiber' started by Inaut, May 15, 2020.

  1. Inaut

    Inaut Member

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    So, I'm going back to drinking nettle leaf tea and started re-educating my self about its benefits. Just wondering who consumes it and if they've found any lasting benefits? If I recall correctly, @Jennifer and @Blossom consumed it?

    I also read something on a board somewhere (looking for studies now) which I found very interesting was that nettle leaves actually help lower lactate in addition to the laundry list of other benefits...

    Pound for pound I think we'd be hard pressed to find something that checks so many boxes in the health department and if fiber is an issue, just make a strong brew...

    Urtica spp.: Ordinary Plants with Extraordinary Properties

    "Supports the liver, kidneys, thyroid, adrenal glands, intestines, bones, tendons, ligaments, blood vessels, etc. It is a natural antihistamine, removes uric acid and dissolves kidney stones. It is rich in vitamins, minerals and trace minerals. It helps to stop diarrhea and bleeding, and is a natural diuretic. The sterols in nettle are anti-inflammatory, immune supporting and dilates blood vessels improving circulation and regulating blood pressure. It is fed to farm animals to increase their growth and give some animals thick healthy coats. Some people also use nettle leaf extract to help restore hair growth and color. Fed to chickens it increases the protein content of their eggs and increases their shell hardness." so says one of my favourite herbalists
     

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  2. damngoodcoffee

    damngoodcoffee Member

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    I love a cup of strong nettle tea. Tastier than other green broths and gives me that same warm calm feeling. Haven't used it super regularly though. It's been a while since I last drank it, thanks for reminding me to get it again.
     
  3. metabolizm

    metabolizm Member

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    It's supposed to relieve varicocele symptoms.
     
  4. methylenewhite

    methylenewhite Member

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    It's very potent TNF inhibitor.
     
  5. Jennifer

    Jennifer Member

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  6. SOMO

    SOMO Member

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    Is it the Leaf or Root that has the Aromatase Inhibitors?
     
  7. OP
    Inaut

    Inaut Member

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  8. OP
    Inaut

    Inaut Member

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    Found this quote browsing through one of James Sloan's(herbalist) post on curezone

    "Hydrazine sulfate works by blocking the enzymes needed for the conversion of the lactic acid, generated by the fermentation of cancer cells, back in to glucose. In short blocking the lactic acid cycle. I have always used nettle leaf for the same purpose. Nettle leaf though works by removing the lactic acid from the body rather than blocking its conversion. By removing it from the body it cannot be converted back in to glucose. Nettle leaf is also nutrient rich, supports the immune system, and supports the liver, kidneys, thyroid, adrenals, etc."
     
  9. Lejeboca

    Lejeboca Member

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    Did he provide any references for the statement that "Nettle leaf though works by removing the lactic acid from the body rather than blocking its conversion"? Thanks.
     
  10. OP
    Inaut

    Inaut Member

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    Nothing referenced. I'm looking for reference still.
     
  11. OP
    Inaut

    Inaut Member

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    @Lejeboca I tink I found it.


    HIGHLIGHTS ON NUTRITIONAL AND THERAPEUTIC VALUE OF STINGING NETTLE
    (URTICA DIOICA)

    AMAL AIT HAJ SAID1*, IBRAHIM SBAI EL OTMANI2, SANAE DERFOUFI3, ADNANE BENMOUSSA3
    1Laboratory of Pharmacognosy, 2Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry and Food Science, 3Laboratory of Medicinal Chemistry, Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacyof Casablanca, HassanII University, 19 rue Tarik Ibn Ziad, BP 9154, Casablanca, Morocco
    Email: amal.aithaj@gmail.com


    Received: 26 Jul 2015 Revised and Accepted: 02 Sep 2015

    ABSTRACT

    Urtica dioica L. is a herbaceous plant belonging to the family of Urticaceae that has been used for centuries against a variety of diseases. Thanks to its high content of nutriments and bioactive compounds like poly phenols, vitamins and minerals, nettle possesses a great nutritional value and a large number of pharmacological effects, including anti-proliferative, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, analgesic, immunostimulatory, anti-infectious, hypotensive, antiulcer activities and cardiovascular disease prevention. Stinging nettle is considered safe and has been shown to be side effects free, when taken by mouth of up to 18 gram per day. The most common stinging nettle preparations usually include the crude dried powder, dry extract, infusion (herbal tea), decoction or fresh juice. Stinging nettle root is mainly used for mictional disorders related to benign prostatic hyperplasia while the leaves are used for arthritis, rheumatism and allergic rhinitis. This up to date review highlights the current knowledge and scientific advances concerning Urtica dioica.

    Keywords: Urtica dioica, Polyphenols, Urtica Dioica Agglutinin (UDA), Benign prostatic hyperplasia, Rheumatism.

    © 2016 The Authors. Published by Innovare Academic Sciences Pvt Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (Creative Commons — Attribution 4.0 International — CC BY 4.0)

    INTRODUCTION

    Nettle has been used for over 2,000 y as a natural remedy for its therapeutic properties. However, it was until the beginning of the 20th century that its medicinal importance was largely studied and dramatically enhanced, beginning with the determination of the chemical structure of the main chemically active agents and their pharmacological properties. It should be stressed that most of the indications from traditional medicine have been validated and new properties have been discovered. Moreover, given its balanced protein composition and its high content of minerals and vitamins, nettle has also been shown to be of great nutritional interest.

    In Morocco, these medical and nutritional data remain poorly explored, and the use of nettle is being increasingly neglected both in the culinary field and in the medical and veterinary areas.

    This work highlights the current knowledge and scientific advances concerning Urtica dioica. We begin with a botanical and a phytochemical study of the plant and its traditional medical uses in Morocco. We then look in detail at its nutritional and medical properties and we describe, at last, its methods of preparation and use, its toxicity and the use precautions.

    Botanical study

    Native to Eurasia, nettle was widely distributed throughout all the temperate regions of the world. It is now found in Europe (more in northern than in southern Europe), in northern Africa, in Asia and in northern and southern America where it’s also largely widespread [1]. Table 1 summarizes the most known common names of Urtica dioica.

    Nettle is a herbaceous plant, 1 to 2m tall and perennial with rhizomes. It belongs to the Urticaceae family in the Rosales order and the genus Urtica characterized by unicellular stinging hairs. The erect stems are strong, hairy, mostly unbranched and quadrangular. They are green in young plants and purple/reddish in older ones. The leaves are opposite, egg-shaped, elongated, with a strongly serrated margin and a pointed tip (fig. 1). The leaves and stems are very hairy and bear many stinging hairs whose tips come off when touched, transforming the hair into a needle that injects a stinging liquid. The nettle is dioecious with separate male and female plants that flower from June to September. The flowers are unisexual, small, and are arranged in clusters on slender, branched spikes formed in the leaf axils. Female flowers are greenish and have a unilocular ovary with a solitary ovule bearing one style with a brush-like stigma. Male flowers are yellowish and composed of 4 stamens, with long elastic filaments, which are bent inwards in the bud. Stinging nettle produces oval-shaped achenes (one-seeded fruits) containing tiny dark brown or almost black seeds. The root system is composed of a taproot which branches into fine rootlets allowing the tuft nettle to expand [1, 2].

    Traditional medicinaluses

    In Morocco, all parts of the plant are used in traditional medicine. The whole plant is used as a diuretic, anti-hypertensive, anti-diabetic, hemostatic, anti-asthenia, antianemic, antispasmodic, antirheumatic and as a remedy for headaches and chills [3, 4]. Nettle is also used to treat spleen, renal and dermal disorders [5]. The seeds are administered orally for their aphrodisiac and galactagogue effects and other traditional uses against tuberculosis and kidney stones have been described [6]. External uses include the treatment of aphthae, hemorrhoids, scabies and pruritus [4].

    Table 1: Common names of Urtica Dioica all around the world

    Latin name

    Urtica dioïca L. Syn

    English names

    Nettle; Common nettle; Stinging nettle; Tall nettle; Slender nettle; Greater nettle.

    French names

    Ortie dioïque; Grande ortie; Ortie piquante; Ortie élevée.

    Arabic names

    الحريكة ; القراص (Hourriga; Kerrass)

    Spanish names

    Ortiga; Ortiga gran; Ortiga grossa; Ortiga major; Ortiga inayor.

    German names

    Brennesslbatter; Brennessel-kraut; Nesslkraut; Haarnesselkraut.


    [​IMG]
    Fig. 1: Urtica dioica, botanical aspects (Pictures from Wikipedia. Permission granted to copy, distribute and/or modify under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License)

    Phytochemical study

    The leaves of nettle are rich in flavonoids, as well as phenolic compounds, organic acids, vitamins and minerals. The root contains lectins, polysaccharides, sterols and lignans. The stinging action is due to the liquid contained in nettle’s hairs. This liquid contains at least three compounds that could be the cause of its allergic reactions: acetylcholine, histamine and serotonin [2, 7].

    Nettles secondary metabolites have marked pharmacological properties. The main flavonoids are quercetin, kaempferol and rutin. These flavonoids have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that may limit oxidative damage responsible for some chronic diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases and degenerative diseases. They have many other effects, such as the inhibition of lipid peroxidation of liver mitochondria and blood cells and have also been shown to have hypoglycemic, antibacterial and antiviral properties [8-10]. The most active flavonoid is quercetin. It has strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions [11]. It is not only capable of reducing the incidence of mammary tumors in rats [12, 13] but it also has anti-tumor activity against prostate cancer [14]. Its anti-ulcerogenic activity has also been demonstrated [15, 16]. The antioxidant activity of rutin is similar to that of quercetin [17-19]. In addition, it has anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer properties and reduces the cytotoxicity of oxidized bad cholesterol (LDL) [20, 21]. Tannins, caffeic acid, ferulic acid and coumarins also have antioxidant activity and may protect cells against damage caused by free radicals [22, 23].

    Nettle root contains a lectin called Urtica dioica Agglutinin (UDA). This lectin is somewhat unique. It has a low molecular weight (8 to 9 kDa) and consists of a single polypeptide chain of less than 100 amino acids [24]. The UDA has immunomodulatory activity and appears to limit the autoimmune manifestations [25]. Table 2 summarizes the chemical composition of nettle’s main parts.

    Nutritional value

    Nettle leaves are rich in protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and trace elements. Proteins make up of 30% of the dry mass [31]. Furthermore, the protein content of the leaves widely covers the needs of amino acids, especially the essential amino acids for humans [33, 38]. Content of mineralsubstances is about20%of the dry mass [31, 45]. Nettle is rich in iron, zinc, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus and potassium. Leaves content of cobalt, nickel, molybdenum and selenium have also been determined [32]. The proportions of different compounds given in the literature are different. The origin and time of sample collection may be responsible for that. The maximum and minimum levels of various compounds are shown in tables 3 and 4.

    Table 2: Chemical composition of Urtica dioica

    Part used

    Chemical composition

    References

    Aerial parts

    Flavonoids: Quercetin-3-O-rutinoside (rutin), kaempferol-3-O-rutinoside and isorhamnetin-3-O-glucoside.

    [26-28]

    Organic acids: Caffeic acid and its esters, ferulic acid, chlorogenic, citric, fumaric and phosphoric acids.

    [26, 29]

    Essential oil: Carvacol, carvone, naphthalene, (E)-anethol, hexahydrofarnesyl acetone,

    (E)-geranyl acetone, (E)-β-ionone and phytol.

    [30]

    Minerals and trace elements: Calcium, Potassium, Magnesium, Phosphorus,

    Iron, Sulphur, Zinc, Manganese, Copper, Nickel and Selenium.

    [31-37]

    Vitamins: vitamin A (retinol), vitamin B2 (riboflavin), vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid),

    vitamin B9 (folic acid), vitamin C (ascorbic acid), vitamin K(phylloquinone).

    [33, 38]

    Other constituents: Tannins, chlorophyll and carotenoids.

    [38]

    Root

    Acidic polysaccharides: glucans, arabinogalactans and rhamnogalacturonans.

    [39]

    Flavonoids: myricetin, quercetin, kaempferol, quercetin-3-O-rutinoside (rutin),

    kaempferol-3-O-rutinoside and isorhamnetin.

    [40]

    Minerals and trace elements: Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc, Manganese and Copper.

    [34]

    Lectins: Urtica dioica agglutinin (UDA), consisting of a single-chain polypeptide made of 89

    amino acids and rich in glycines, cysteines andtryptophans.

    [24, 41]

    Phytosterols: β-sitosterol; β-sitosterol-3-O-β-glucoside, (6'-O-palmitoyl)-sitosterol-3-O-β-D-glucoside;

    7β–hydroxysitosterol; 7α-hydroxysitosterol; 7β-hydroxysitosterol-β-D-glucoside;

    7α-hydroxysitosterol-β-glucoside; 24R-ethyl-5α-cholestane-3β,6α-diol; stigmasterol,

    campesterol, stigmast-4-en-3-on, hecogenin.

    [27, 39]

    Lignans: neo-olivil, secoisolariciresinol, dehydrodiconiferyl alcohol,

    isolariciresinol, pinoresinol, and 3,4-divanillyltetrahydrofuran.

    [42, 43]

    Coumarins: Scopoletin

    [39, 43]

    Fruit (seeds)

    Fixed oil: saturated and unsaturated fatty acids.

    Carotenoids: β-carotene, lutein and violaxantin.

    Polysaccharides.

    [44]

    The vitamin composition is very varied. It contains both fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K, and also significant amounts of water-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin C and the B vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B9). Wetherilt found that 100g of fresh leaves contained 0.0l mg vitamin B1 (thiamine), 0.23 mg of vitamin B2 (riboflavin), 0.62 g of vitamin B3 (Niacin), 0.068 mg vitamin B6, 238 mg of vitamin C, 5 mg of pro-vitamin A (β-carotene) and 14.4 mg of vitamin E (α-tocopherol) [38].

    This richness in nutrients gives the nettle valuable nutritional and also pharmacological properties. Trace elements and vitamins strengthen the immune system and allow the body to better resist bacterial and viral infections. The simultaneous presence in nettle of vitamins B1, C, E, iron, zinc, selenium and manganese contributes to its anti-oxidant qualities. Nettle has also a remineralizing action, thanks to the presence of calcium, potassium, silicon and iron. It would be beneficial in osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. The high potassium content is another indicator of the protective power of nettle leaves against cardiovascular disease. The iron content and also the presence of vitamin C, which increases the bioavailability of iron makes that nettle is indicated for the treatment of anemia. Additionally, the magnesium intake it provides reduces the incidence of all forms of stress while zinc has an anti-inflammatory action.

    Another asset of the nettle is chlorophyll. The nettles leaves contain a significant amount of chlorophyll, around 4.8 mg per gram of dry leaves [46]. This chlorophyll promotes cleansing and detoxification, it cleanses the digestive system and fights bloating and bad breath. In addition, chlorophyll promotes regeneration of cells and activates wounds healing.

    Finally, thanks to their high content of protein, essential amino acids, vitamins and iron, nettle leaves can be an important nutritional supplement. Therefore, they can be a good remedy for the treatment of protein-energy malnutrition in malnourished children, pregnant women, convalescents and the elderly.

    Table 3: Nutritional composition of fresh leaves of stinging nettle [31, 33-36]

    Nutritional constituent

    Min (%)

    Max (%)

    Water

    65

    90

    Proteins

    4.3

    8.9

    Ashes

    3.4

    18.9

    Carbohydrates

    7.1

    16.5

    Lipids

    0.7

    2

    Fibers

    3.6

    5.3

    Calories (kcal/100g)

    57

    99.7


    Table 4: Content of mineral and trace elements (mg/100 g of dry matter) [31-37]

    Mineralsand trace elements

    mg/100 g ofdry matter

    Min

    Max

    Minerals

    Calcium

    113.2

    5090


    Magnesium

    0.22

    3560


    Phosphorus

    29

    75


    Potassium

    532

    917.2


    Sodium

    5.5

    16

    Trace elements

    Cobalt

    0.0084

    0.018


    Copper

    0.52

    1.747


    Iron

    3.4

    30.30


    Manganese

    0.768

    5.784


    Molybdenum

    0.4265

    -


    Nickel

    0.0732

    -


    Selenium

    0.0027

    0.0074


    Zinc

    0.9

    3.033


    Pharmacological properties

    Antiproliferative activity

    Many research works show that nettle root's components can interfere with several mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of benign prostatic hyperplasia. The antiproliferative effect on prostate cancer cells of UDA and the methanolic alcoholic root extracts has been demonstrated in vivo and in vitro [45, 47, 48].

    Lignans from root extract not only inhibit the binding of androgens to their transporter proteins SHBG (Sex Hormone Binding Globulin), but also the binding of these proteins to the membrane receptors of the prostate, thereby inhibiting their proliferative activity on prostate tissues [42, 45, 49].

    The root extract reduces the production of estrogen by aromatase inhibition, thereby decreasing the conversion of androgens to estrogens [50]. Also, it was mentioned that root extracts inhibit the enzymatic activity of the membrane of prostate cells, which would stop its growth [45, 51]. Clinical studies on a root extracts showed a significant improvement of the symptoms of benign prostatic hypertrophy [52-54].

    Anti-inflammatory activity

    Scientific research has highlighted the nettle's ability to decrease the inflammatory response, through multiple mechanisms whose consequences are the reduction of synthesis of lipid mediators and proinflammatory cytokines. Indeed, leaf extracts inhibit the biosynthesis of arachidonic acid cascade enzymes, in particular the cyclo oxygenases COX-1 and COX-2, thereby blocking the biosynthesis of prostaglandins and thromboxanes [55].

    In addition, an inhibitory effect was demonstrated on the NF-kappa B (nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells) system involved in immune, inflammatory and antiapoptotic responses [56,57] and the PAF (Platelet Activating Factor) [55]. Furthermore, several studies have shown that the extract of the leaves reduces the release of Interleukins IL-2 and IL-1β, Interferon γ (IFN γ) and Tumour Necrosis Factors TNF-α and TNF-κ [58,59].

    Therefore, the anti-inflammatory effect of nettle leaves suggest that it may be useful in acute inflammatory diseases but also in chronic diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis.

    The aqueous extract of nettle roots also has anti-inflammatory activity. Wagner had shown that a polysaccharide fraction of this extract has an inhibitory effect on the induced rat paw oedema, comparable to that of indomethacin [60]. The anti-inflammatory effect is related to the inhibition of cyclo oxygenases and lipoxygenases, and to cytokines production.

    Antioxidant activity

    Extracts of nettle have a neutralizing role of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Their antiradical activity on the superoxide anion O2 °-, the hydroxyl radical OH ° and nitric oxide radical NO ° was determined by spectrophotometry. Numerous studies have shown that the methanolic and ethanolic extracts of leaves have a remarkable antioxidant effect on the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH) [9, 61-63].

    Chelation of ferrous iron was evaluated using ferrozine, which forms a red chromophore with the residual iron (FeII-Ferrozine) having an absorption maximum at 562 nm. The absorbance obtained shows that nettle has a significant chelating activity of the ferrous ions [63].

    Another study conducted on rats treated with carbon tetrachloride (CCl4), showed that nettle decreased lipid peroxidation and increased the activity of the antioxidant defense system playing thus a protective role against hepatotoxicity. This antioxidant activity is essentially correlated to the phenolic compounds content [9, 64].

    Immunomodulatory activity

    Many studies indicate that flavonoids are able to modulate the immune system. This modulatory effect of the aerial parts of nettle was studied on mice, using an ethanolic extract at two different doses (50 and 100 mg/kg), taken orally for 14 d. The activities of enzymes such as cytochrome P450, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase showed a significant decrease while the antioxidant enzymes showed a significant increase. In addition, the plant has also shown a modulatory effect on enzymes of the kidney, lung and stomach, such as glutathione-S-transferase, superoxide dismutase and catalase [65].

    Quercetin-3-O-rutinoside, kaempherol-3-O-rutinoside and isorhamnetin-3-O-glucoside present in the aerial parts of the nettle contributes to the immunomodulatory activity [2, 66].

    Furthermore, the immunomodulatory effect of the UDA isolated from the roots, has been demonstrated in several studies that elucidate their action on T cells, macrophages, thymocytes and on the release of TNFα [60].

    Analgesic and antinociceptive properties

    In addition to its anti-inflammatory action, the nettle has an analgesic effect, proved in vivo in rats and mice. The aqueous extract of the leaves at the dose of 1200 mg/kg is capable of reducing the thermal stimulation in the hot plate test at 55 °C and causes a greater resistance to pain [67].

    The antinociceptive effect of the hydroalcoholic extract of nettle leaves was evaluated through the acetic-acid writhing test and formalin-induced paw licking test. The results obtained show that the hydroalcoholic extract significantly reduces in a dose-dependent manner the nociceptive response in mice and rats. Flavonoids, the caffeoyl malic acid and the caffeic acid could be responsible for these analgesic properties [56].

    Antiulcer properties

    The protective effect of the nettle against gastric ulcers is dose dependent. The aqueous extract of aerial parts, at doses of 50 and 200 mg/kg protected rats against gastric ulcer, with significant protection rates ranging from 67.7 to 77.8%. Moreover, this extract showed analgesic activity against gastric dilatation caused by acetic acid [63].

    Anti-infective properties

    The antibacterial properties of various extracts of Urtica dioica against different bacterial strains were identified by several studies. In a study conducted on nine bacteria: Citrobacter koseri, Enterobacter aerogenes, Escherichia coli, Micrococcus luteus, Proteus mirabilis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, and Streptococcus pneumoniae, the aqueous extract of aerial parts inhibited the growth of all these bacteria except some strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa [63].

    Another study on 38 microorganisms brought evidence of the bactericidal effect of organic extracts of the aerial parts. These extracts inhibited the growth of Acinetobacter calcoaceticus, Bacillus cereus, Bacillus spizizenii, Bacillus subtilis, Citrobacter freundii, Entrobacter aerogenes, Erwinia sp., Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Micrococcus sp., Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Salmonella paratyphi B, Serratia marcescens, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and Vibrio parahaemolyticus. Phenolic compounds in the nettle would be responsible for this antibacterial effect [68].

    The antiviral activity of the nettle was evaluated in vitro [69]. The selective and powerful inhibitory action of UDA on the intracellular replication of HIV (HIV-l and HIV-2), respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and cytomegalovirus (CMV), was well elucidated [70].

    The antimycotic activity on some pathogenic fungi (Alternaria alternata, Aspergillus flavus, Candida albicans, Ceratcystis ulmi, Fusarium oxysporum, Fusarium solani, Phoma exigua, Phytophthora carotovora, Porphyromonas gingivalis, Microsporum cookei, Microsporum gypseum, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Trichoderma viride, Trichophyton mentagophytes and Rizoctonia solani) was also confirmed [63, 71].

    Antidiabetic activity

    A study conducted to evluate the anti-diabetic activity in vivo showed the hypoglycemic effect of aqueous extracts of leaves of nettle on diabetic rats. These results are explained by the inhibition of the intestinal absorption of glucose [72].

    Furthermore, studies performed on the islets of Langerhans have demonstrated the stimulatory action of nettle on insulin secretion, accompanied by a decrease in blood sugar. Tests performed on normal and diabetic rats after intra peritoneal injection of aqueous extracts confirmed this result [73].

    Antihypertensive action

    Intravenous injections of an aqueous extract of the aerial parts of the nettle, using two concentrations: 4 and 24 mg/kg/h resulted in a blood pressure drop of 15% and 38% proportionally to the administered dose. This decrease was correlated with an increase in diuresis and natriuresis. However, the hypotensive effect was reversible after one hour if a low concentration (4 mg/kg/h) had been used, while it persisted when using a high concentration (24 mg/kg/h) [74].

    Moreover, root extracts tested on isolated pieces of vaso constricted aorta showed a relaxant activity. This vasodilator effect is due to the release of the endothelial nitrogen oxide, potassium channel opening and a negative inotropic action [75].

    Effect on platelet aggregation

    Several studies indicate that extracts of nettle strongly inhibit platelet aggregation. The inhibitory effect of the aqueous extract of the leaves on platelet aggregation induced by thrombin was clearly demonstrated. Flavonoids are the main compounds involved in this activity [76, 77].

    Action on hyperlipidemia and atherosclerosis

    Daily administration of aqueous extract of Urtica dioica at 150 mg/kg for 30 d, either as part of a normal or high fat diet, caused a reduction in serum lipids and lipoproteins. Significant decreases in cholesterol and LDL/HDL ratio (Low Density/High Density Lipoproteins) were observed [77].

    Similarly, administration of an ethanolic extract to hypercholesterolemic rats, using doses of 100 mg/kg and 300 mg/kg, was responsible for the decreased of cholesterol and LDL levels [78, 79].

    Anti allergic activity

    The anti-allergenic activity of the nettle is mainly due to two mechanisms. In addition to its inhibition of histamine H1 receptors, nettle inhibits tryptase, consequently reducing mast cell degranulation and the release of proinflammatory cytokines [55].

    In a randomized double-blind study with allergic patients having allergic rhinitis, an improvement in symptoms was observed after one week of treatment [80].

    Toxicity

    Toxicological studies have shown that the LD50 (median lethal dose) of the aqueous extract of the leaves administered intraperitoneally in mice is 3.5g/Kg [72]. While the LD50 of the hydro-alcoholic extract of the leaves administered orally is 5.77 g/Kg [56].

    Toxicity studies carried out on the roots have shown that the LD50 values obtained after intravenous injection of an aqueous extract and an infusion of the roots to rats are respectively 1.721 g/kg and 1.929 g/kg [81].

    Whereas the LD50 of hydro-alcoholic extracts administered intraperitoneally is 600 mg/Kg [82]. The toxic dose of the fixed oil of nettle seeds is greater than 12.8 ml/kg [83]. For chronic oral application in rats, the DL50 was 1.31g/kg (table 5).

    Table 5: LD50 of different Urticadioica extracts


    Extracts

    Animals tested

    Administration routes

    LD50 (mg/kg)

    References

    Leaves

    Hydo-alcoholic

    Mice

    Oral

    5770

    [56]


    Aqueous

    Mice

    Intraperitoneal

    3500

    [72]

    Root

    Hydo-alcoholic

    Rats

    Intraperitoneal

    600

    [82]


    Aqueous

    Rats

    Intravenous

    1721

    [81]


    Infusion

    Rats

    Intravenous

    1929

    [81]


    Infusion

    Rats

    Oral

    >1310

    [81]

    Seeds

    Fixed oil

    Mice

    Intraperitoneal

    >12.8

    [83]


    Modes of use and use precautions

    Nettle is used by oral and local routes. The most frequently used preparations in herbal medicine are the total dry powder, dry extracts, infusions, decoctions and the fresh nettle juice.

    Orally, aerial parts are used as diuretics and also in the treatment of arthritis, rheumatism and gout. Nettle teas are also used in the treatment of rhinitis and seasonal allergies [84].

    Thanks to their high content of iron and trace elements, nettle leaves infusions, tinctures or fresh juices are prescribed to treat anemia and also for asthenia, convalescence and demineralization states. In association with the marigold (Calendula officinalis) and curled dock (Rumex crispus), nettle leaves are used for the treatment of chronic skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and hives [85]. Nettle fresh juice has a hemostatic effect on the skin and nasal bleeding. It also overcomes the heavy periods or menorrhagias by reducing their flow [85].

    Used in mouthwash, nettle is also effective against oral infections such as aphtha, gingivitis and tonsillitis [86]. External preparations like fresh nettle poultices are used in cases of acne and to alleviate arthritic and rheumatic pain [86].

    Nettle preparations are also applied externally in hair care against dandruff and oily hair. Furthermore, the nettle roots, alone or associated with saw palmetto (Serenoa repens), are used as teas or extracts in mictional disorders due to benign prostatic hyperplasia [85].

    The adherence to dosage recommendations is essential. The recommended adult dosage of the dried aerial parts is 1.2 to 18g per day. For fresh juice, the recommended dose is 15 to 45 ml per day. Dosages for the dried root preparations are 0.3 to 24g per day. Recommended dosages and frequency of administration for each type of preparations are shown in table 6.

    Table 6: Recommended doses of Urtica dioica extracts

    Parts used

    Preparation

    Recommended doses

    References

    Dried aerial parts


    Dry powder

    6 à 12 g, per day

    8 à 12 g, 2 à 3 times daily

    2 à 5 g, 3 times daily

    3 à 6 g, 3 times daily

    [87]

    [84]

    [88]

    [89]

    Infusion

    6 à 12 g, per day

    3 à 5 g, 1 à 3 times daily

    2 à 5 g, 3 times daily

    3 à 6 g, 3 times daily

    [87]

    [84]

    [88]

    [89]

    Decoction

    2 à 5 g, 3 times daily

    [88]

    Liquid extract

    (Dry weight equivalent)

    6 à 12 g, per day

    2 à 5 g, 3 times daily

    2 à 4 g, 3 times daily

    [87]

    [84]

    [89]

    Tincture
    (Dry weight equivalent)

    1.4 à 2.8 g, per day

    0.5 à 1g, 3 times daily

    0.4 à 1.2g, 3 times daily

    [87]

    [90]

    [88]

    Freshaerial parts

    Fresh juice

    15 ml, 1 à 3 times daily

    [84]

    Dry powder

    0.3 à 0.6 g, per day

    4 à 6 g, per day

    [91]

    [87]

    Infusion

    4 à 6 g, per day

    4 à 6 g, 3 à 4 times daily

    [87]

    [84]

    Decoction

    4 à 6 g, per day

    4 à 6 g, 3 à 4 times daily

    [87]

    [84]

    Liquid extract

    (Dry weight equivalent)

    1.5 à 7.5 g, per day

    4.5 à 7.5 g, per day

    1 à 1.5g, 3 times daily

    [87]

    [84]

    [88]

    Dry extract

    (Dry weight equivalent)

    2.1 à 8.4 g, per day

    4.5 à 12.1 g, per day

    [84]

    [88]

    Dried roots

    Tincture
    (Dry weight equivalent)

    3 g, per day

    0.5 à 1g, 3 times daily

    1 à 1.5g, 3 à 4 times daily

    [84]

    [90]

    [88]

    Despite having anti allergic properties, nettle may cause allergies in sensitive people. Some rare hypersensitivity reactions like hives, itching, edema, oliguria and gastralgia have been reported [92, 93].

    Furthermore, the use of nettle orally is contraindicated in pregnant women because of the risk of abortion [94] and in children under 12 because of a lack of clinical studies in this area [1].


    CONCLUSION

    Notorious for its unpleasant irritant effects, stinging nettle is actually rich in vitamins and minerals and possesses many medicinal properties. During the last decades, several studies have focused on the pharmacological properties and the analysis of the chemical composition of this plant.

    Although its potential benefits are still not entirely defined, many studies have strengthened its claimed indications from traditional medicine. Conducted in vitro and in vivo in animals, these studies have indeed approved many of the nettle pharmacological effects as antiproliferative, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, analgesic, anti-ulcer, immunostimulating, anti-infectious, anti-hypertensive and also as protective against cardiovascular diseases.

    In addition, and in regard to its richness in protein, minerals and vitamins, the stinging nettle provides a proven great nutritional value.

    In the perspective of a large medical use, several clinical trials conducted in humans, confirmed these pharmacological and nutritional properties. And many toxicological studies proved that nettle can be considered safe since significant doses, administered orally in humans, showed no side effects.

    CONFLICT OF INTERESTS

    Declared None

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  12. damngoodcoffee

    damngoodcoffee Member

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    D?? :eh: Is that a mistake.

    Btw didn't Travis talk about greens containing something similar to vitamin D in effect?
     
  13. damngoodcoffee

    damngoodcoffee Member

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    I can find a few websites stating nettle has vit D but no specific measurements given.
     
  14. bzmazu

    bzmazu Member

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    Used Stinging Nettle for serious Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) Works beautifully...it is the preferred herb in Europe for BPH...saw palmetto I found useless...some think its a scam pushed by the prostate industry.
     
  15. Lejeboca

    Lejeboca Member

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    Thanks for the find! From its ref. [65] : Modulatory effect of Urtica dioica L. (Urticaceae) leaf extract on biotransformation enzyme systems, antioxidant enzymes, lactate dehydrogenase and... - PubMed - NCBI

    "The extract was effective in inducing GST, DTD, SOD and CAT activity in the forestomach and SOD and CAT activity in the lung..."

    Is increasing SOD a good thing?? I recall Dr. Peat mentioning to the contrary. But I didn't look sufficiently into SOD in this forum or else to answer my question.

    Also, [65] says that Urtica actually increases lipid peroxidation in the liver.
    upload_2020-5-18_18-7-56.png

    All in all, I am cautious taking large dozes of nettles. I take it for a particular muscle ache, which now may be explained by nettles action on LDH and as a hair rinse.
     
  16. Lejeboca

    Lejeboca Member

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    The reference [34] from the paper "Highlights..." above is also interesting that nettles has many "hard-to-get" minerals, which make it look like a seafood :):.

    Rafajlovska, Vesna & Kavrakovski, Zoran & Klopcevska, Jana & Srbinoska, Marija. (2013). Determination of protein and mineral contents in stinging nettle. Quality of Life (Banja Luka) - APEIRON. 4. 10.7251/QOL1301026R.

    https://www.researchgate.net/public...otein_and_mineral_contents_in_stinging_nettle

    Abstract: Content of proteins and minerals (Mg, Ca, Cu, Zn, Mn and Co) in leaves, stem and root of stinging nettle collected from different localities from the Republic of Macedonia were determined. Generally, the higher content of proteins and minerals were determined in leaves, followed by the content in stem and root. In the quantity of proteins significant differences were determined depending to the organ of stinging nettle. The highest determined values for the protein content in leaves expressed to the dry mass were 26.89% in leaves, 14.54% in stem and 10.89% in root. The values for the calcium content in stinging nettle were higher in comparison to the magnesium values. Zinc content in the leaves was two and five times higher than the content of copper and manganese, respectively. In leaves, stem and root non significant differences in cobalt content were determined.


    [EDIT] Removed my question on the iron content.
     
  17. Matt C

    Matt C Member

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    I dont' have any links on me but from what i've read over the years, you're hard pressed to find teas with more nutrients than Nettle and Tulsi(holy basil) teas.

    I have both in my cupboard, i just keep forgetting to drink them consistently
     
  18. not_James_Bond

    not_James_Bond Member

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    @Inaut
    Thanks, I am going to get me some Nettle tea, how are the digestive bitters going for you?? :D
     
  19. OP
    Inaut

    Inaut Member

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    Pretty good @not_James_Bond

    The herbs I’m using now are mainly gentian, ginger, tribulus and nettle leaf. I will be adding nettle root at some point but I love this combo so far
     
  20. Jing

    Jing Member

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    If you are going to be making nettle tea you should make infusions instead.
     
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