Nettle Lemonade Herbal Cooler
Stinging nettles is a staple among Western herbalists and is widely used not only as tea below but also sautéed, in soups, and juice predominantly as a blood nourishing tonic and for seasonal rhinitis.
Nettles have been used medicinally for centuries. In Morocco, for instance, all parts of the plant are used in traditional medicine. The whole plant is used as a diuretic, anti- hypertensive, anti-diabetic, hemostatic, anti-asthenia, antianemic, antispasmodic, antirheumatic and as a remedy for headaches and chills ¹. Nettle is also used to treat spleen, renal and dermal disorders³. This is why this recipe works great when facing hot temperatures that can disrupt the body’s fluid balance and cause water retention.
Phytochemical Profile: Anti-Inflammatory Properties
According to the studies referenced below, nettles have secondary metabolites have marked pharmacological properties. Its main flavonoids are quercetin, kaempferol and rutin, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that may limit oxidative damage responsible for some chronic diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases and degenerative diseases. They also aid in the inhibition of lipid peroxidation of liver mitochondria and blood cells, which have been shown to have blood sugar-regulatory effects as well as antibacterial and antiviral properties
Nettle is also rich in minerals including iron, zinc, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus and potassium, replenishing the electrolytes we lose through sweating in the heat or exercising.
Nettle Lemonade Herbal Cooler
1 tablespoon (15 g) of dried nettle in 4 cups (1 L) of boiled water infused for at least 4–8 hours, ideally overnight in the refrigerator
Sweetener of your preference, such as 2 tablespoons of raw honey or stevia
1 lemon, juiced
Add your dried nettle to a quart sized jar.
Boil water, pour it into the jar, and allow the mixture to steep covered until it cools down, usually about an hour.
Add in your preferred sweetener and stir to refrigerate 4-8 hours or preferably overnight.
Strain the nettle into, pour the lemon juice, and serve!
About the Author
Almila Kakinc-Dodd is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief of The Thirlby. She is also the author of the book The Thirlby: A Field Guide to a Vibrant Mind, Body, & Soul. She is currently pursuing her Master’s in Nursing as a Dean’s Scholar at Johns Hopkins University. Her background is in Anthropology & Literature, which she has further enriched through her Integrative Health Practitioner training at Duke University. She lives in the Washington, D.C. Metro Area, where she regularly contributes to various publications. She is a member of Democratic Socialists of America and urges others to join the movement.
Bnouham M, Mekhfi H, Legssyer A, Ziyyat A. Medicinal plants used in the treatment of diabetes in morocco. Int J Diabetes Metab 2002;10:33-50.
Daoudi A, Benboubker H, Bousta D, Aarab L. Screening of fourteen moroccan medicinal plants for immunomodulating activities. Moroccan J Biol 2008;4-5:24-30.
Bellakhdar J. La pharmacopée marocaine traditionnelle: Médecine arabe ancienne et savoirs populaires. France: Ibis Press; 1997.
Kumar S, Pande AK. Chemistry and biological activities of flavonoids: an overview. Sci World J 2013;2013:1-16.
Nair MP, Mahajan S, Reynolds JL. The Flavonoid quercetin inhibits proinflammatory cytokine (Tumor Necrosis Factor Alpha) gene expression in normal peripheral blood mononuclear cells via modulation of the NF-κβ system. Clin Vaccine Immunol 2006;13:319-28.
Kataki MS, Murugamani V, Rajkumari A, Mehra PS, Awasthi D, Yadav RS. Antioxidant, Hepatoprotective, and anthelmintic activities of methanol extract of Urtica dioica L. Leaves. Pharm Crops 2012;3:38-46.
Cushnie TPT, Lamb AJ. Antimicrobial activity of flavonoids. Int J Antimicrobial Agents 2005;26:343–56.
Ait Haj Said, Amal & Otmani, I.S.E. & Derfoufi, Sanae & Benmoussa, Adnane. (2015). Highlights on nutritional and therapeutic value of stinging nettle (Urtica Dioica). International Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. 7. 8-14.