Sourced from our own private herb beds, and grown without the use of chemicals, stinging nettle leaf is sold in amounts as little as a half ounce. Urtica dioica is reportedly helpful for a variety of conditions. Each batch is harvested in spring when the plant’s sugars are at their peak, then dried using passive methods, often either near the wood stove or using the solar dehydrator. It is then chopped finely for easier addition to tea blends or for use in capsules.
When dried, nettle loses the “stinging” properties that some use for pain management, but it makes a great addition to almost any hot or cold tea, as it has a very mild flavor.
Penn State’s Milton Hershey Medical Center researchers published this about stinging nettle:
Stinging nettle has been used for hundreds of years to treat painful muscles and joints, eczema, arthritis, gout, and anemia. Today, many people use it to treat urinary problems during the early stages of an enlarged prostate (called benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH). It is also used for urinary tract infections, hay fever (allergic rhinitis), or in compresses or creams for treating joint pain, sprains and strains, tendonitis, and insect bites.
And this in regards to allergies or hay fever:
One preliminary human study suggested that nettle capsules helped reduce sneezing and itching in people with hay fever. In another study, 57% of patients rated nettles as effective in relieving allergies, and 48% said that nettles were more effective than allergy medications they had used previously. Researchers think that may be due to nettle’s ability to reduce the amount of histamine the body produces in response to an allergen. More studies are needed to confirm nettle’s antihistamine properties. Some doctors recommend taking a freeze-dried preparation of stinging nettle well before hay fever season starts.
More information on Stinging Nettle can be found on Penn State’s webpage.