The nettle – just another weed or a healthy super food?

Dear readers,

you all know it, that nasty weed in your garden that seems to have nothing else to do than to burn you when you touch it in order to make you remember about it for a while. Nasty, really. BUT! There is much more to nettles than burning you, there is a world of health inside that little green plan that grows so unnoticed everywhere.

Nettle is the most well-known  plant when it comes to cleaning your blood, it has excellent detoxifying qualities. In triggering the functioning of your kidney it helps to eliminate toxins and “waste products” from your metabolism. Its leaves can be used to prepare a very purifying, well-tasting tea, they are extremely rich in calcium, iron and proteins and can be used in your green smoothie or as a savory ingredient in cremes, baking goods and much more.

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Also, nettles have anti-inflammatory properties and are being used for example in treatments of inflammatory illnesses of the intestine like colitis ulcerosa and morbus crohn. They help treating rheumatic conditions and purify your urine tract. Even in cases of prostatic cancer they are said to inhibit the growth of further cancerous cells. There’s a lot more to those nasties, like a strengthening of your auto immune system and they are very helpful when it comes to hair loss caused by an over acidic metabolism. I have written earlier posts regarding causes and treatments of excessive acidity in your body.

Nettles are very rich in minerals and nutrients and protect your liver with their high amounts of antioxidants. They are an excellent source of beta carotin, manganese and contain 8 times the vitamin C content of an orange.

So, question is how do I integrate nettles into my daily food? Apart from nettle tea you find nettle extract ready made. Otherwise go and get nettle roots yourself (preferably with gloves…. 😉 ), dry them and pulverize them.

As for the leaves (which have unlimited possibilities of use in your kitchen) go out and get them, best between May and September or in milder regions even directly after winter. Don’t forget the gloves as mentioned before…. Use young, soft leaves, the plant should not have reached knee hight, yet. Chop the leaves roughly, add them to a pan with very little water together with some crushed garlic, steam the leaves for a few minutes, add some spices (there are special mixtures of spices for nettle leaves) and serve them with a bit of butter.

You can use them in any smoothie of course or dry them and prepare a tea (2 tsp, crush them a bit before pouring the hot water over them), have about 500ml every day (that would make 8 tsp :D). Dried nettle leaves can be used as a herb in nearly all dishes all year around and will thus enhance their nutrient and mineral content.

Nettle seeds then can be used in muesli, soups, dressings or even in smoothies. Add them to your dough or just take them as a supplement.

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All these very positive qualities of the nettle make it an excellent companion when purifying, detoxifying or during colone cleansing.

Go ahead and show it to them, use them like they used your skin when you were running outside as a child with bare legs!!!

 

 

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