Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Benefits of Nettle Tea

Pick nettles for tea during spring and summer.

Part used as a tea: Leaf and flowering top
How to make it: Use 1 teabag, 1 tsp of dried Nettle leaf, or 2 tsp of fresh Nettle leaf to a cup and leave to brew for at least 5 minutes. People worry about drinking the tea made from the fresh plant, but it is quite safe - boiling water breaks down the hairs that cause the sting! However, you still have to take care when picking or handling it, either wear gloves or grasp the nettle firmly, in which case it should not sting. Nettle are best picked during Spring and Summer for use as a tea, though for use as a vegetable they should be picked when young and tender in the spring.
How much to use: Drink the tea, from the fresh or dried plant, up to 5 or 6 cups a day. For short term use - a few days - you can take more.
Flavour and taste: Nettle has a particularly 'green' flavour as a tea, not entirely unlike spinach! Try it out and do not be put off by this description, as it is a pleasant and very useful herbal tea.
Health benefits: Nettle is a much underrated herb. Not only is it rich in iron and good for staunching wounds and reducing blood loss (which makes it a useful plant for heavy menstrual bleeding), but it has a significant anti-allergy effect. Nettle helps to reduce the intensity of hay fever symptoms, can be very helpful in a number of skin problems - especially nettle rash (!) and eczema, and may help in some asthmatic and bronchial conditions.
Nettle has long been used as a spring tonic in country regions, and partly because it is a 'greedy' plant drawing up many nutrients from the soil, it does have a tonic, strengthening effect if taken regularly.
Interestingly, recent research into Nettle root suggests that it may be an effective treatment for an enlarged prostrate, a condition which troubles an increasingly large number of men. Nettle leaf and root is a great hair tonic. Use a strong decoction and rub into the scalp 3 times a day to stimulate hair growth and reduce itching and flaking.
History and Folklore: Nettle has not always been reviled, and in fact in the past was thought of as an extremely useful plant to have around. Not only can it be eaten as a vegetable, taken as a herbal medicine, and fed as dry fodder to animals, but its stems can be used to make good linen. The Romans, however, had the most novel approach to Nettles. The story goes that they brought Nettle seeds with them to northerly Britain, so that they could flog their cold and aching limbs with Nettles, the stinging causing so much irritation that the circulation is improved and arthritic joints eased!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Maintaining Health through Alkalinity

pH test strips can be used to check alkalinity level of the body.
The pH of the body is very important to its overall health. You can check yours to see if it is within the healthy range by testing your urine or saliva using pH test strips. A healthy pH is just above 7.0. Anything above 7.0 is called alkaline and anything below 7.0 is acid. All our bodily functions operate better in alkaline conditions. We can maintain an alkaline state easily through diet and exercise and by maintaining a healthy balanced lifestyle.
When we are stressed or overworked an acid condition will result and sickness automatically follows. An acid condition has an adverse effect on human cell function causing impaired energy production, fluid accumulation and an increase in free radical generation. Avoiding foods that cause acidity in the body is as important as maintaining a healthy life balance. 
These days people are rarely too alkaline because their diets are, more often than not, too high in acid forming substances like refined sugar, animal and dairy products, alcohol and drugs. 

Supplement your diet with Alkaline Foods.
Foods that will help you to maintain an alkaline state
You can eat lots of them!

  • Alfalfa Grass +29.3
  • Barely Grass +28.1
  • Cabbage Lettuce, Fresh +14.1
  • Carrot +10.0
  • Cayenne Pepper +18.8
  • Celery +13.3
  • Chives +10.0
  • Cucumber, Fresh +31.5
  • Green Beans +11.2
  • Limes +10.0
  • Spinach +13.0
  • Wheatgrass +33.8
  • Avocado +15.6
  • Tomato +13.6

Balance your diet by, supplementing with all or any of the above, eating moderate amounts of organic unprocessed grains, fresh fruit and vegetables, cooking with good oils, and choosing to eat only good quality fresh fish or organic meat. Avoid processed meat and dairy products, refined sugar and alcohol. We can also maintain a healthy pH balance by meditating, chewing food very well, breathing deeply, getting plenty of fresh clean air and water and exercising regularly.