Nettle and wine tonic

This is one of my favourite brews over the winter and spring. Nettles are incrediably nutrient rich, and considering the poor quality of much of the food available, can provide an essential boost of vitality and raw greens. You only have to try putting nettles through a juicer and a small dose of the thick, almost black juice that comes out will tell you at once that this stuff is pretty vitalising.

As a general blood nourishing tonic (for those who feel depleted and run down), I leave Hunza apriocts and nettles in red wine overnight, press this and prepare into a syrup. This then becomes the base for adding other tinctures, which I choose depending on the person – for instance, someone suffering repeated infections may have a mix of Nettle tonic with Astraglus and Echinacea, whereas someone needing building up may need Angelica and Eleuthrococcus.

These tonics are available through the free drop in clinic (Tue-Wed 1-2), where I can assess your needs and adapt the tonic to suit you personally.

NB: For a more detailed recipie do pop in and I’ll be happy to show you how to make your own tonics

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Nettle drug interactions/cautions: One trial showed a positive interaction where nettle increased the action of antiinflammatory drugs. Nettle may also potentiate diuretic medicines and I would recommend taking advice from a herbalist if you have kidney problems.

Plant ID confusion: Can be confused with white deadnettle. Deadnettle doesn’t sting and has white flowers, otherwise looks very similar.

NETTLE RESEARCH NOTES

There a fair bit of good research about Nettle root being of benefit in benign prostrate hyperplasia – here’s one BPH trial to get an idea. Another trial looked at a combination of nettle and sabal. There’s even one nice little bit of research on nettle sting for arthritic pain in the thumb.

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Evidence sources: The descriptions here are drawn from traditional sources, biomolecular studies, personal clinical experience and small scale clinical trials. This page is intended for solely for information purposes and not as a substitute for personal advice from a qualified health care provider. For cautions when self-prescribing herbs see click here.