There are 3 angles from which I want to talk about this wonderous herb called Nettle (Urtica dioica):
- Spring is the time of year we turn our thoughts towards cleansing, revitalising and transforming our health and energies from the hibernation of winter to dynamism of spring
- The world in which we live is bombastic and overwhelming, though many people are gearing more towards transformations in their health (mental and physical) which requires us to increase our intake of nutrients both for the digestion and nervous system
- Taking herbal teas are great, and can be even better when you use loose dried or fresh organic herbs of therapeutic quality from a herbalist or reputable supplier
I want to link all the points together. When I think of the energy that we need to fuel us in the spring as we (hopefully) experience new bursts of energy and ideas, and the deep nourishment required to feed our cells and keep the nervous system calm, balanced and nourished to offset the challenges of modern living, I think of a long-infused nettle brew. I first started using and recommending this type of infusion (because it is VERY different from just the average cup of herbal tea) to women with endometriosis whose monthly menstrual bleed left them exhausted, drained and sluggish. And at the same time, I was moving towards working much more to help nourish patient’s nervous systems before doing anything else. From reading Susan Weed I was rediscovering the possibility of meeting these needs by working with and prescribing long-infused nettle tea. As she talks about nettle, “ I tell you of my ability to feed you fully: I can nourish your energy, your being, your sense of worth, and every cell in your body……drink my green glow, my green makes your blood so red, and your movements so flexible. My green that makes your skin, your hair, so gleaming, so glowing”.
What’s different, and better about this preparation is that the over-night infusion allows more of the minerals and micronutrients to be fully released into the water. It is a stronger and deeper preparation, more nourishing, more toning, more energising and more cleansing. Here’s how to make the preparation:
- 28g of organic loose dried cut nettle into a large mason/kilner jar
- Fill jar with just over 1 litre of freshly boiled water
- Put the lid on/cover
- Leave over night to infuse
- In the morning strain it and compost the plant matter, storing the rest in the jar in the fridge
- Drink 250-500mls of the brew through the day (cold or warm), drink within a few days, always keeping it in the fridge
Nettle is a versatile herb, used to treat a variety of conditions. It is regarded as a weed and abundantly available throughout rural and urban environments. It is used for treating joint problems such as rheumatism/ arthritis, for gynaecological issues: it helps restore the energy and minerals of a person experiencing heavy/excessive menstrual bleeding, after birth/miscarriage, for convalescence after illness, treats mild iron deficiency, detoxifies the blood, helps chronic skin disease: itching, inflammation, irritation, for allergies (skin, immune and respiratory), as well as strengthening natural resistance.
Weed S., 1989, Wise Woman Herbal Healing Wise, Ash Tree Publishing, New York
Bartram T., 1995, Bartram’s Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine, Robinson Publishing Ltd, UK
Mességué M., 1991, Of People and Plants, Healing Arts Press, Vermont