Nettle Tea Benefits & Side Effects
Nettles are plants we love to hate. However, when it comes to Nettle Tea benefits, things are a little different. That’s right - when brewed as an infusion, the long detested Stinging Nettle is a true sight to behold.
We therefore hope to change your mind about this supposed hedgerow menace in the following article, which will explore all aspects of its finer qualities. Keep reading to find out:
- What is Nettle Tea?
- Why Does the Nettle Plant Sting?
- Are There Nettle Tea Properties?
- What is Nettle Tea Good for?
- Is Nettle Tea Good for Hayfever?
- How About Nettle Tea Benefits for Hair?
- Is Nettle Tea and Diabetes a Safe Mix?
- Could Nettle Tea for Colds be Helpful?
- Is Nettle Tea a Diuretic?
- Is There Caffeine in Nettle Tea?
- Should I Worry About Nettle Tea Side Effects?
- Is it Safe to Drink Nettle Tea During Pregnancy?
- How to Make Nettle Tea?
These are but a few of the searing, burning questions (see what we did there?) we’ll be answering below. If then, after you’ve read this article, you want to know where to buy Stinging Nettle Tea, look no further than here.
The Kent and Sussex Tea and Coffee Company take pride in packing all of its Loose Teas, Tisanes and Coffees fresh to order. This ensures quality and consistency with every cuppa made.
What is Nettle Tea
If we want to understand, “what is Nettle Tea?,” we must first look at its botanical features. The Nettle plant (Urtica dioica), though cursed by hikers, gardeners and children alike, is a flowering perennial that has earned its place in the world.
It belongs to the Urticaceae family and flourishes nearly everywhere except the Arctic, the Antarctic and Africa.
There are three primary genera in this family, and within that there are an estimated 80 species. In the British Isles, we have the Common Nettle (the one we use for Nettle Leaf Tea), the Dwarf Nettle (Urtica urens) and the Roman Nettle (Urtica pilulifera).
All three, technically speaking, come with Nettle Tea benefits. However, it is the Common Nettle that has garnered the most attention.
Its name comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “Noedl,” which means “needle”. This likely derives from the needle-like pain of its sting. The term “Urtica dioica”, meanwhile, is twofold: “Urtica” is from the Latin words for “sting” or sometimes “burn.” “Dioica” means “two houses.” The latter phrase refers to how male and female flowers grow on separate nettle plants.
The plant itself consists of a hairy, single stalk with deeply serrated leaves of dark green on top and of pale green on the underside. Overall, it grows to heights of up to 1.2 metres (4 feet).
The size of the leaves averages at 15 centimetres (approx 6 inches). Underground, the plant has a yellow rhizome found very near the surface of the soil.
What About the Sting?
When it comes to, “what does Nettle Tea do?,” the first thing, surely, would be to hurt you. Right? Wrong. It is indeed true that the most famous thing about it is its sting.
This plant, after all, has developed hollow hairs stiffened by silica with a swollen base that contains three chemicals. These chemicals, in turn, are histamine, acetylcholine and serotonin, which, when combined, wreak havoc on your skin.
If making Nettle Tea from your garden is a priority, you’ll need to boil the sting out of the leaves. Simply put them into a pan over heat for five minutes.
Afterwards, you might want to dry them to ensure the best Nettle Tea possible. The safer alternative is to buy from us. We do all of the work so you don’t have to. In other words, all you have to worry about is brewing up.
You’re probably now curious about “what does Nettle Tea taste like?” When made into a standalone infusion, expect bold herbaceous notes with earthy, sweet, minty undertones - a true delight to the senses.
If you’re not convinced and are thus wondering, “how to make nettle Tea taste better,” we recommend creating a blend. Consider options such as Nettle and Mint Tea or Fennel and Nettle Tea.
There are even some people who combine Yerba Mate and Nettle Tea, thereby creating an energy kick in their cuppa. Yerba Mate Tea, for those who don’t know, is a South American herb which is one of 60 plants to naturally contain caffeine.
Nettle Tea Properties
We have explored the basic elements of Loose Nettle Tea, including its botany, why it causes pain and, perhaps most importantly, “what does Stinging Nettle Tea taste like?”
The next stage is to understand Nettle Tea properties and how, exactly, they contribute to its health benefits. As such, we’ve created the following table showcasing just some of its chemical compounds:
Why Nettle Tea is Good For You
|Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)||Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)||Vitamin B3 (Niacin)|
These constituents, providing you lead a healthy and active lifestyle, are helpful to you on a molecular level. Perhaps most famously, they combat free radicals in the body, thus slowing down the harmful process of oxidative stress.
This ultimately reduces the risk of developing a multitude of chronic conditions. Yet it is only the beginning of Nettle Tea benefits.
Nettle Tea Benefits
Are you ready to learn more about the health benefits of Nettle Tea? We thought so. The following evidence, all of which comes from reputable sources, will help you to understand, “what is Nettle Tea good for?”
It will, for example, explain how Nettle Tea benefits weight loss, while also exploring why Nettle Tea for hair loss is an excellent choice.
Just please remember that we are here to show, not endorse, its reported medicinal qualities. If, in other words, you have any concerns, it remains paramount that you talk to a doctor or another health professional before brewing up Nettle Leaf Tea.
The bottom line is that The Kent and Sussex Tea and Coffee Company cares about the welfare of its customers - so listen to the experts first.
Nettle Tea Hayfever
Statistics indicate a significant rise in hay fever cases here in the UK. In 2017 alone, 31% of adult Britons reported that they experienced this allergic reaction to pollen in the past 12 months.
Its symptoms include sneezing, itching and a blocked or runny nose, which is most often countered with antihistamine medication. But is Nettle Tea good for hay fever, too? The short answer is yes.
In one human-based study published by the University of Maryland Medical Center, researchers found that Nettle capsules helped reduce itching and sneezing in participants with hay fever.
In another study, 57% of volunteers rated Nettles as effective in relieving their allergies, while 48% considered Nettles more effective than some allergy medications.
Nettle Tea Histamine Intolerance
Histamine intolerance shares many similarities to seasonal allergies. If you consume histamine-rich food or come into contact with histamine, you may experience hives, itchiness or other symptoms.
The likes of alcohol, yoghurts, avocados, spinach and aged cheese can all trigger a histamine response in the body. And there is also, of course, Stinging Nettles. Surely, then, it hinders instead of helps?
On the contrary, as bewildering as it might sound, Nettle Leaf Tea is an antidote to its own sting. This is because, once you’ve brewed the leaves to neutralise its acid, it has potent antihistamine properties - much like the humble dock leaf.
So, next time you find yourself accidentally brushing up against Stinging Nettles, why not make a cuppa and thus utilise Nettle Leaf Tea Benefits?
Nettle Tea and High Blood Pressure
About 40% of the world’s population, at one time or another, experience high blood pressure (hypertension). This is where the pressure in your blood vessels becomes unusually high, which then increases the risk of heart disease, strokes and dementia.
Can Nettle Leaf Tea lower blood pressure? Research from the Journal of Translational Medicine suggests that it’s likely.
The evidence here notes that it stimulates nitric oxide production. Nitric oxide acts as a vasodilator (something that opens/dilates blood vessels), thus relaxing muscles and helping blood vessels to widen.
Somewhat related is the fact that this infusion also improves blood circulation due to its abundance in iron. This, as a result, alleviates anaemia and general fatigue.
Nettle Tea for Gout
Gout is a form of arthritis characterised as sudden, severe pain attacks, as well as redness and tenderness in the joints. Historically, people knew it as the “disease of kings” because of its association to overindulgence in food and drink.
We now recognise it as when urate crystals accumulate in the joints, thereby causing inflammation, swelling and intense pain.
While diets high in red meat, shellfish, alcohol and sugary drinks have a part to play, other factors also lead to gout. This includes obesity, high blood pressure, family history and as a side effect of several different medications.
We’ve already established that Nettle Tea benefits high blood pressure, which is one way it supports those with gout. However, there is yet more to this remarkable beverage.
A German study established that an extract of Nettle called hox alpha can suppress several cytokines in inflammatory joint diseases - gout among them.
Similar findings come from a 2013 study published in Phytomedicine, which discovered that Stinging Nettles, including the root, reduce inflammation. So it is its potent anti-inflammatory response, in other words, that makes the biggest difference.
Nettle Tea and Diabetes
Earlier, we posed the question, “is Nettle Tea and diabetes a safe mix?” The answer is perhaps better than you’d expect. The preliminary research (emphasis on “preliminary”) suggests that it might lower blood sugar levels due to its ability to mimic the effects of insulin.
It may also improve cholesterol, which can likewise reduce diabetic and prediabetic complications.
One Iranian clinical trial saw forty-six participants take 500-mg of Nettle extract three times daily. The results showed significantly lower blood sugar levels compared to a placebo.
However, despite these seemingly promising findings, there are still too few human studies as of 2020. This is why we urge you to seek medical consultation before trying Nettle Tea benefits for diabetes.
Nettle Tea Benefits Weight Loss
Potentially, Nettle Tea benefits weight loss in a couple of ways. First, when it comes to Nettle Tea calories, it has no more than two calories per 8-oz cup.
This makes it a fantastic alternative to sugary, fatty soft drinks. Then there is the possibility of it boosting the metabolism of fat cells, thus enabling the body to burn fat quicker and more efficiently.
Such a factor, if proven outright, could mean that drinking Nettle Tea before exercise will produce better, indeed more noticeable results from your routine.
Just remember, though, that it isn’t going to do all of the work for you. Keep up with those morning jogs, those midday salads and that abstinence from snacking if you want to see a huge difference around your waistline.
Nettle Tea Benefits for Acne
Acne is a skin condition that occurs when hair follicles become clogged with oil and dead skin cells. This often leads to a break-out in whiteheads, blackheads or pimples.
It commonly appears on the face, forehead, chest, upper back and shoulders, and, contrary to popular belief, affects people of all ages. Most would consider it a cause of considerable embarrassment even though it is perfectly natural.
The anti-inflammatory properties of Nettle Herbal Tea again contribute much here, whereby they reduce redness and swelling while simultaneously soothing itching. Its antihistamine and anti-microbial properties, too, have a significant influence on overall skin health.
Bear in mind, though, that you should drink Nettle Tea rather than apply it topically. This is because topical use might cause reactions.
Nettle Tea for Hair Loss
Is Nettle Tea good for hair health? The evidence, though only in its early stages, has made a compelling case that it is. For starters, inflammation of the scalp has long been recognised as an instigator for chronic hair loss.
It stands to reason, then, that this beverage can act as a support in that regard. Another factor is dihydrotestosterone (DHT), an androgen (sex hormone) that contributes to male pattern baldness.
Some scientists have found correlations between high DHT levels and Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), something we’ve already covered in this article.
The good news is that Nettle Tea benefits offer a hand twice over here. One six-month study with 620 patients showed that it acted as an effective DHT blocker, thereby ensuring the continued health of your locks while reducing BPH risks.
Finally, the minerals in Nettle Tea, according to a 2010 trial, help increase the number of hairs in a designated area of the scalp. If, then, you’re wondering, “is Nettle Tea for hair growth a good idea?,” this should speak for itself.
The same rules apply, however, when it comes to its topical use. Basically, drink it instead of applying it directly to your scalp.
Nettle Tea for Colds
This herb contains several immune-boosting compounds such as flavonoids, carotenoids and, perhaps most notably, Vitamins A and C. The latter two constituents, as most people will know already, help protect immune cells against damage that, when left unchecked, can weaken immune function.
In doing so, Nettle Leaf Tea essentially prevents colds and the flu from manifesting in the first place.
The facts come from a study conducted at Hacettepe University in Ankara, Turkey. It discovered that Nettles stimulate the T-cells of the immune system.
This, in turn, helps to fight infection and other disease-causing pathogens in the body. Additionally, they boast antibacterial and antifungal properties, which also support the body’s capacity to ward off minor illnesses.
Nettle Tea Liver Cleansing
Our liver has many duties. However, its three most vital are to clean the blood, produce bile and store energy in the form of sugar called glycogen.
Maintaining liver health, then, is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Enter Detox Tea. Beverages such as Dandelion Root and Milk Thistle Tea can reportedly flush your system of harmful toxins such as alcohol.
What this does, according to some sources, is cleanse the liver, which then ensures it’s working at full working capacity. But is Nettle Tea one of the Best Teas for a Detox?
It could be. First, you should note that the concept of detoxing is questionable at best. Few scientists support its use. Yet, if proven to be accurate one day, then the belief is that Nettle Tea can, indeed, enhance the excretion of certain toxins.
Is Nettle Tea a Diuretic?
Another oft-talked about concept in recent years has been the claim that some Teas act as diuretics. This term refers to promoting the formation of urine (lovely, we know), which enables someone to excrete excess water in several ways.
People with high blood pressure, heart failure, swollen tissues and kidney disease sometimes use Diuretic Tea in the hope that it helps.
Extra fluid in the body makes it hard for the heart and several other parts of the body to work correctly. By enabling the excretion of excess fluid, you are taking the strain off numerous organs.
Dr Robert Kachko, President of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians, says: “Nettle is diuretic, it increases urine output and removal of uric acid.”
Nettle Tea Side Effects
For the most, it is good news when it comes to this Herbal Tea’s remarkable health benefits. Unfortunately, though, some Stinging Nettle Tea side effects need addressing.
Perhaps most obvious is the potential allergic reaction to Nettle Tea. This might occur if you haven’t boiled freshly cut leaves properly and they still have their sting - another reason to choose safety and buy from us!
Can you drink too much Nettle Tea? Technically, yes. We recommend consuming no more than 2-3 cups a day. Otherwise, there is a chance, however small, of you experiencing mild stomach upset, fluid retention, sweating, diarrhoea, hives or rashes.
Should these issues occur, The Kent and Sussex Tea and Coffee Company strongly advise you to seek medical attention.
Nettle Tea Pregnancy
Can I drink Nettle Tea when pregnant? Is it advisable? Most health professionals believe that any infusion made from these leaves, be it a standalone Herbal Tea or a blend, can cause uterine contractions.
Worse still, some theorise it could lead to even more adverse side effects. So, if you were thinking, “is Nettle Tea good for pregnancy?,” the simple answer is no. We recommend you avoid it while expecting.
Is Nettle Tea safe while breastfeeding, though? It depends on whom you ask. Historically, women used this herb after childbirth to treat anaemia and as a galactagogue - something that promotes the production of breast milk.
However, medical experts today consider it a risk following reports of it causing breast engorgement and mastitis. Again, then, we advise against its use.
Is There Caffeine in Nettle Tea?
Nettle Leaf Tea contains no leaves from the Camellia sinensis (Tea) plant. This means that it is not technically a “Tea” in the conventional sense.
Furthermore, and perhaps most importantly, the lack of “real” Tea leaves means that the concept of Nettle Tea caffeine is a myth. While some other beverages such as Coffee Beans and Yerba Mate contain caffeine, this particular brew isn’t one of them.
But how does this play out when it comes to Nettle Tea benefits? It’s worth recognising the fact that some people, particularly caffeine-sensitive individuals, experience side effects from caffeine such as jitteriness and sleeplessness.
With Nettle Tea, however, you don’t have to worry. As such, this makes it an unmistakably excellent choice of Tea before bed.
How to Make Nettle Tea
This article, so far, has delved deep into the world of “what is Nettle Tea good for?” It is finally time to explore, “how do you make Stinging Nettle Tea?”
First off, you’ll need either a Tea Infuser or Loose Tea Filter (both available through us). Once you have one of these items to hand, just follow the steps below. Before you know it, you’ll be enjoying its taste and health benefits for yourself.
1. Use a Tea Filter / Infuser.
Put Nettle Herbal Tea into one of our Tea Infusers / Filters.
2. Boil the Kettle.
Brew fresh water using either filtered or bottled water for freshness.
3. Add Filter or Infuser to your Mug.
Place the Tea-filled accessory into a mug or cup.
4. Pour Freshly Boiled Water.
Fill the cup or mug with hot water straight off the boil.
5. Allow it to Infuse / Steep.
How long to steep Nettle Tea? For 5-10 minutes (the longer you leave it, the bolder it will taste.)
6. Time to Indulge.
Your beverage is ready to enjoy at your leisure.
Conclusion of Benefits of Nettle Tea
This is a type of Herbal Tea with numerous beneficial qualities. Is Nettle Tea good for allergies? Yes. Is Nettle Tea good for gout?
Absolutely. Is Nettle Tea good for hair growth? You bet. There is indeed a vast multitude of reasons why you should choose this beverage.
Whatever your motive, be sure to buy from The Kent and Sussex Tea and Coffee Company for the best Nettle Tea.