Stinging Nettle Benefits
There are a number of possible benefits of stinging nettle. The supplement is believed to be beneficial for the treatment of allergies, arthritis, an enlarged prostate, and various other conditions. Some of these benefits are more legitimate than others, but much more research is necessary to confirm that this product is truly effective for any use.
When used as an herbal supplement, stinging nettle is claimed to be useful for a variety of different purposes. Some of the claimed benefits of stinging nettle include the treatment of the following conditions:
- Allergies (such as hay fever)
- An enlarged prostate (also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH)
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Internal bleeding
- Poor circulation
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
- Kidney stones
- Hair loss.
It is also claimed that stinging nettle can have a diuretic ("water pill") effect, promote youthfulness, help with wound healing, and enhance general health as a "tonic."
Some of these supposed benefits are more legitimate than others, although much more research is necessary to confirm that stinging nettle is truly effective for any use (see Does Stinging Nettle Work?).
The various parts of the stinging nettle plant (such as the roots or leaves) contain several different compounds that may have medicinal properties. For instance, the leaves contain quercetin, a flavonoid that may help with allergies by inhibiting histamine release from certain cells in the body. The leaves also contain several other flavonoids, such as beta-sitosterol (which may help lower cholesterol and treat an enlarged prostate).
Stinging nettle also contains compounds that may have pain-relieving, anti-inflammatory analgesic, numbing, antiviral, and antibacterial effects. Because stinging nettle contains many different active components, it is likely that benefits of the herb are due to a combination of several of the different components.