The Chemistry of Stinging Nettles
Stinging nettles are a type of plant which have defensive hairs. Their stings hurt a lot. Stinging nettles can be found in all of America except Hawaii. They can also be found in most of Europe and in Asia. Nettles sting because the hairs on it contains poison. If nettles are heated the poison disappears, making it edible.
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The excellent Compound Interest site once again shows us how something that has happened to most of us actually works. The chemistry of stinging nettles and what can be done to counter act them.
Nettles have long been used for medicinal purposes. Nettle leaf is a herb that has a long tradition of use as an
adjuvant remedy in the treatment of arthritis in Germany. Nettle leaf extract
contains active compounds that reduce TNF-α and other inflammatory
cytokines. It has been demonstrated that nettle leaf lowers TNF-α
levels by potently inhibiting the genetic transcription factor that activates
TNF-α and IL-1B in the synovial tissue that lines the joint.
medicine internally (as tea or fresh leaves) for treatment of disorders of the
kidneys and urinary tract, gastrointestinal tract, locomotor system, skin,
cardio-vascular system, hemorrhage, flu, rheumatism and gout.
make hair more glossy, which is why some farmers include a handful of nettles
with cattle feed.
clinical trials as a treatment for symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia
(BPH). These extracts have been shown to help relieve symptoms compared to
placebo both by themselves and when combined with other herbal medicines.
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