Indications Nettle

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Acne (f; BGB; FEL); Adenoma (1; BGB; SHT); Adenopathy (f; BIB; JLH); Ague (f; DEM; MAB); Alactia (f; CRC; MAD); Allergy (f1; BGB; HH3; MAB; WAM); Alopecia (f; APA; WOI); Amenorrhea (f; KAB); Anemia (f1; CRC; FAD; WAM); Arthrosis (f12; DEM; FAD; MAB; PH2; NP9(2):10; X10911825; X11962753; X11950004); Asthma (f1; CRC; DAW; MAB; NPM); Ataxia (f; DEM); Biliousness (f; NPM); Bladder stones (f12; PHR; PH2; NP9(2):10); Bleeding (f1; CRC; DEM; FEL);

Boil (f; NPM); BPH (root) (12; BGB; KOM; MAB; PH2; NP9(2):10); Bronchosis (f1; CRC; MAB; PED); Bug bites (1; MAB); Burns (f1; BGB; CRC; MAB); Cachexia (f; KAB); Calculus (f; CRC); Cancer (f; CRC; FAD); Cancer, breast (f1; CRC; JLH); Cancer, ear (f1; CRC; JLH); Cancer, feet (f1; JLH); Cancer, lung (f1; CRC; JLH); Cancer, mouth (f1; CRC; JLH); Cancer, prostate (f1; NP9(2):10; X15254411); Cancer, rib (f; JLH); Cancer, spleen (f1; CRC; JLH); Cancer, stomach (f1; CRC; JLH); Cancer, womb (f1; CRC; JLH); Cardiopathy (f; AAH); Carcinoma (f; BIB); Caries (f; NPM); Catarrh (f; WOI); Childbirth (f; DEM); Cholangitis (f; CRC); Cholecystosis (f; CRC; FAD; MAB; WOI); Cholera (f; FEL); Cold (f; AAH; CEB; NPM); Colic (f; CRC); Colitis (f; FEL; MAB); Congestion (f; APA); Constipation (f; CRC; WOI); Consumption (f1; BUR; MAB; SUW); Corn (f; AAH); Cough (f; AAH; NPM); Cramp (f; AAH; MAD); CVI (1; BGB); Cystosis (f; FEL); Dandruff (f; PH2; WOI); Dermatosis (f1; BGB; CAN; MAB; FT74:677); Diabetes (f1; CRC; MAD; PH2; FT74:677; EB49:406); Diarrhea (f1; BGB; BUR; FAD; FEL; MAB); Dislocation (f; NPM); Dropsy (f; AAH; BGB; CRC); Dysentery (f1; BUR; CRC; FAD; MAB); Dysmenorrhea (f; BGB; APA; MAD; PED); Dyspepsia (f; DEM; MAD); Dyspnea (f; CRC; KAB); Dysuria (2; KOM; PHR; PH2; SHT); Eczema (f; BGB; CAN; MAB; MAD); Edema (f; CRC; PH2); Endothelioma (f; BIB; JLH); Enterosis (f; FEL); Epilepsy (f; AAH); Epistaxis (f1; AAH; BGB; CAN; KAB; MAB); Epithelioma (f; BIB; JLH); Erysipelas (f; CRC); Erythema (f; CRC); Escherichia (1; WOI); Exanthema (f; MAD); Fever (f1; CAN; CEB; NPM); Flu (f; PH2); Fungus (f; AAH); Gastrosis (f; CRC); Goiter (1; MAB); Gonorrhea (f; BIB; CRC); Gout (f1; FAD; MAB; PH2; NP9(2):10); Gravel (f12; BGB; BUR; KOM; MAD; PHR); Hayfever (2; APA; MAB); Headache (f; AAH; CRC); Hematemesis (f; CEB); Hematuria (f; SUW); Hemoptysis (f; CRC); Hemorrhage (f1; PNC; FT74:677); Hemorrhoids (f; AAH; BGB; DEM; PED); Hepatosis (f; HH3); Herpes (f; BGB; X15814267); HIV (1; PH2); High Blood Pressure (f1; CAN; NP9(2):10; FT74:677); Hives (f; DEM); Hoarseness (f; CEB); Impotence (f; CEB); Infection (f; AAH); Inflammation (f1; BGB; CRC; PH2; X11962753); Itch (f; DEM); Jaundice (f; BUR; CRC; KAB; PED; SUW); Kidney stones (f12; APA; PHR; PH2; NP9(2):10); Lethargy (f; KAB); Leukorrhea (f; CRC; MAD); Malaria (f; BIB; CEB; CRC; KAB); Melaena (1; CAN); Menorrhagia (f; SUW); Mycosis (f; AAH); Myocardiopathy (1; BGB); Myosis (f; MAB); Nephrosis (f; BUR; CRC; FEL; HH3; PED; SUW); Neuralgia (f; APA; BIB; CRC); Nocturia (1; MAB); Obesity (f; BUR; CEB); Ophthalmia (f; AAH); Orchosis (f; CEB); Osteoarthrosis (f1; MAB); Osteoporosis (1; JAD); Otosis (f; MAD); Pain (f12; BUR; EB49:406; NP9(2):10; X10911825; X15013182); Palsy (f; CEB; CRC; KAB); Paralysis (f; BUR; CRC); Parotitis (f; AAH; BUB; JLH); Parturition (f; APA; BGB); Pertussis (f; BIB; CRC); Pharyngosis (f; MAB); Pimple (f; AAH); Pleurisy (f; BGB; CEB); Pollaki-suria (1; BGB); Polyp (f; BIB; JLH); Pregnancy (f; SKY); Prostatosis (12; PH2; SHT; X15045190); Puerperium (f; NPM); Pulmonosis (f; CEB); Rash (f; AAH); Rheumatism (f12; FAD; KOM; PHR; PH2; NP9(2):10; EB51:195; X10911825; X11962753); Rhinosis (1; BGB; HH3; MAB); Ringworm (f; AAH); Sarcoma (f; BIB; JLH); Sciatica (f1; CRC; KAB; MAB); Seborrhea (f1; BRU); Shigella (1; WOI); Shingle (f; AAH); Snakebite (f; EB49:406); Sore (f; CEB); Sore Throat (f; CRC); Splenosis (f; CRC; FAD; JLH); Sprain (f; APA; SKJ); Sting (f; CRC); Stitch (f; MAD); Stomachache (f; DEM); Stomatosis (f; MAB); Stone (f12; KOM; MAD; PHR; PH2; SHT); Swelling (f; AAH; BIB; DEM); Tendinitis (f; APA); Toothache (f; CEB); Tuberculosis (f; CRC; KAB); Tumor (f; CRC; JLH); Ulcer (1; X15013182); Uremia (f; BIB); Urticaria (f1; MAB); Uterorosis (f; BGB; APA; CAN; KAB); UTI (2; PHR; KOM; PH2; SHT); Uvulosis (f; CEB); Vaginosis (f; APA); Venereal Disease (f; BIB; CRC); Vertigo (f; BIB; CRC); Virus (1; PH2); Worm (f; AAH; BGB; NPM); Wound (f; MAB; NPM).

Dosages (Nettle):

Greens widely eaten, but only after cooking disarms the sting. Some make nettle pudding, adding broccoli, leeks, and rice. Some make nettle beer; British wrap their Cornish Yarg cheese in nettle leaves; leaf juice serves as rennet; dried leaves (they lose their sting in drying) used to make herb tea. In Scotland, nettles are combined with leeks or onions, broccoli or cabbage, and rice, boiled in a muslin bag and served with butter or gravy. Nettle beer and nettle tea are made by some people. Dried nettles can be fed to livestock and poultry, but few animals will eat the living plants (BIB; FAC; TAN; EB54:155). 3-4 tsp (4-6 g) shoot or leaf in 150 ml boiling water cooled, 3-4 x/day(APA; MAD); 4-6 g/day root (APA); 3-4 tsp (circa 4 g) shoot/cup water/several x/day (APA);

2-4 g dry herb, or in tea, 3 x/day (CAN); 3-4 ml liquid herb extract (1:1 in 25% ethanol) 3 x/day (CAN); 2-6 ml root tincture (1:5 in 45% ethanol) 3 x/day (CAN); 8-12 g herb; 4-6 g root (KOM); 8-12 g dry herb/day (MAB); 9 g/day leaf for arthrosis (MAB); 4-6 g/day dry root (MAB); 3-6 ml/day fluid herb extract (1:2) (MAB); 4-9 ml/day fluid root extract (1:2) (MAB); 3-6 ml/day fluid herb extract (1:2) (MAB); 3-6 g/day root or 600-1200 mg/day 5:1 extract for BPH (MAB); 7-14 ml/day herb tincture (1:2) (MAB); 125 g juice (MAD); 3-4 tsp (circa 4.8 g) herb in hot tea (MAD); 4-6 g root/day; one or two 475-mg capsules 2 to 3 x/day; one 450-mg StX capsules 2 x/day (NH);

3-6 g dry leaf (PED); 4.5 g dry leaf:22 ml alcohol/23 ml water (PED); 2.5-5 ml liquid herb extract (PNC); 8-12 g dry herb/day (SHT); 4-6 g powdered root/cup water (WIC).

• Algerians mix powdered nettles with powdered jasmine for gonorrhea (BIB).

• Carolinans suggest the root for consumption, diarrhea, dysentery, gravel, hemorrhoids, jaundice, nephrosis, and pain (BUR).

• Czechs poultice the herb onto cancers (JLH).

• Devonshire locals use nettle top tea for urticaria (KAB).

• French use nettle roots steeped in vinegar for tumors of the feet and spleen, steeped in honey for tumors in lungs or ribs (JLH).

• Irish drink nettle tea to clear measle rash (AAH).

• Italians use stinging nettle (and elderberry and parietaria) for herpes zoster (X15814267).

• Russians self-urticate to energize tired muscles (KAB).

• Russians use for cholangitis, cholecystitis, constipation, dysmenorrhea, hepatitis, and jaundice (CRC; HJP).

• Herb decoction taken for cold, cough, rheumatism, and stomachache (EB51:195).

• Nettle roots crushed with vinegar for swellings of the feet or spleen (CEB).

• Nettle juice as a mouthwash for swollen uvula (CEB).

• Nettle juice boiled lightly with sugar; 2 oz taken orally for bleeding piles (CEB).

• Nettle seed with honey (or nettle juice) for cold, cough, gastrosis, orchosis, and swellings (CEB).

• 1 Tbsp seeds with jam or honey for impotence (CEB, where we read that nettle seeds in wine excite to games of love).

• Seed (and flower) tincture 1 tsp 3-4 x/day for ague and malaria (CEB).

• Seeds boiled in wine for orchosis (CEB).

• Seeds crushed in honey for pustules on the lung, side ache, and swelling of the ribs (CEB).

• "Seed of Nettle stirreth up lust, especially drunk with Cute (thickened must) ..." (Gerarde as quoted in CEB).

• 12 to 15 seeds, 3 x/dayfor goiter (or bigneck) (CEB).

Downsides (Nettle):

Class 1 (AHP, 1997). No health hazards or side effects known with proper therapeutic dosages (PH2). None known for herb; rare GI upsets for roots (KOM). Herbage contraindicated in fluid retention due to reduced cardiac or renal activity, rarely causing allergic reactions (PHR). Adverse effects of root: mild GI complaints (occasionally) (AEH). Occasional mild GI complaints after root ingestion. The urtication can be painful and long-lasting, in some inducing a black-and-blue reaction. No fatalities are reported in the United States. Newall, Anderson, and Phillipson (1996) caution amines are an irritant. Because it is a reputed abortifacient and to affect the menstrual cycle, its use in pregnancy and lactation should be avoided. May interfere with blood pressure, CNS, and diabetes medications (CAN). Being a nettle fan, I had never heard of it before and was reluctant when my friend Vic said the root tea almost did him in. It is almost as if he read the book, "Consumption of nettle tea has caused gastric irritation, a burning sensation of the skin, oedema, and oliguria" (CAN). Not for use in severely allergic patients, especially those with tendency toward anaphylaxis (WAM). Schulz et al. (1998) report on more than 4000 patients taking 600 to 1200 mg extract/day for 6 months. Only 35 showed side effects, 0.65% GI complaints, 9 (0.19%) dermatosis, and 2 (>0.05%) reporting hyperhidrosis (SHT). No contraindications are stated (SHT). Varro Tyler cautions against self-medication with BPH. Whenever treating BPH, a practitioner should be involved. Baseline levels of PSA should be established before considering an herbal treatment (JAD). Even JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) admits that there is no hard proof for any intervention in BPH; because hospitals kill 200,000 Americans a year, and prostate cancer fewer than 50,000, I will opt for nettle tea, pomegranate juice, sitosterol-rich nuts, especially pumpkin seed, and selenium-rich Brazil nuts as the foods of choice for prostate protection.

Extracts (Nettle):

Analgesic; Anticonvulsant; Bradycardic; CNS Depressant; Hemostatic; Hyperglycemic (PNC; FT68:387); Hypoglycemic (FT68:387); Hypotensive; Hypothermic; Pancreatonic (FT68:387); LD50 = 3625 mg/kg ipr mus (CAN FT68:387). Infusion LD50 = 1929 mg/kg ivn rat. HOH extract LD50 = 1721 mg/kg ivn rat. The tea was well tolerated at levels of 1310 mg/kg orally (Bombardelli and Morazzoni, 1997). LD50 infusion = 1310 orl rat (MAB); (9Z-11E)-13-Hydroxy-9,11-octadeca-dienoic acid, 14 octacosanol, oleanolic acid, secoisolariciresinol, and ursolic acid are listed as weak to moderate aromatase inhibitors found in the methanolic root extract. Aromatase is a key enzyme in steroid hormone metabolism, and its inhibition may partially explain the activity of the roots in BPH. The polysaccharide fraction of the aqueous root extract show prolonged antiedemic and antiinflammatory activity (40 mg/kg orl rat). Ethanolic extract also inhibits elastase, a destructive enzyme in the inflammatory process (IC50 = 68 ^g/ml). The isolectin, abundant in the roots, may contribute to the antiinflammatory and antiprostatic activity of the extracts. Aqueous extracts inhibit dose dependently (0.6-10 mg/ml the binding of dihydrotestosterone to SHBG with specific receptors on human prostatic membranes). The alcoholic extract, isolectin, and stigmast-4-en-3-one were inactive. At concentrations of 0.1 mg/ml, some root extracts inhibited Na+, K+-ATPases 27.6 to 81.5%. Stigmast-4-en-3-one, stigmasterol, and campesterol inhibited Na+, K+-ATPases 23 to 67% at concentrations of 1 to 1000 ^M. Such inhibition may influence prostate cell metabolism and growth (Bombardelli and Morazzoni, 1997). Root polysaccharide extracts anticomplementary (IC50 < 50 |ag/ml HH3). Strange that an herb should inject so many neuroactive compounds — acetylcholine, choline, formic acid, histamine, leukotrienes, serotonin (PH2) — into unsuspecting grazers. Talk about splitting hairs; Hager's Handbuch (1998) says that each hair of U. dioica contains 0.1 to 0.2 ^g acetylcholine; 0.01 ^g histamine; and 5 ng serotonin, while hairs of U. urens contain 53 ng acetylcholine, 5 ng histamine, and, if I translate correctly, circa 0.15 pg leukotriene-B4; 0.3 pg leukotriene C4 + D4. Earlier, Madaus reported secretin (MAD), but I do not think that is the same as the secretin being studied in autism. I assume that there is also some choline involved. One overindulgent physician speculated on one of my Amazonian tours that the histamine injected by the nettle sting generated an antihistaminic reaction, some of which went to the sting and some to arthritic hot spots.

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