Sunday, 3 November 2013

Popular #Herbs - Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica)

Sting Nettle is a flower plant in the genus Urtica, belonging tothe family Urticaceae, native to Europe, Africa, Asia, and North America.The herb has been used in traditional medicine as diuretic and laxative agent and to treat diarrhea and urinary disorders, to relieve pain, treat arthritis, asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, etc.
Health benefits 1. Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)
In the investigation of the effects of stinging nettle (Urtica dioica L.) (UD) on benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) induced by testosterone, found that measurement of prostate/body weight ratio, weekly urine output and serum testosterone levels, prostate-specific antigen levels (on day 28) and histological examinations carried out on prostates from each group led us to conclude that UD can be used as an effective drug for the management of BPH, according to "Ameliorative effects of stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) on testosterone-induced prostatic hyperplasia in rats" by Nahata A, Dixit VK.(1)

2. Cellular response and nonspecific resistance
In the assessment of the effects of extracts from licorice (Glycyrrhisa glabra), great nettle (Urtica dioica), common burdock (Arctium lappa), and bur marigold (Bidens tripartite) on the humoral and cellular immune response and nonspecific resistance in mice, found that Burdock and bur marigold extracts stimulated the humoral immune response, nettle and licorice extracts stimulated cellular response and nonspecific resistance, their effects being superior to those of pharmacopoeial Echinacea purpurea tincture, according to "Effects of drugs of plant origin on the development of the immune response.[Article in English, Russian]" by Borsuk OS, Masnaya NV, Sherstoboev EY, Isaykina NV, Kalinkina GI, Reihart DV.(2)

3. Gastrointestinal hemorrhages
In the determine to ABS, a standardized mixture of the plants Thymus vulgaris, Glycyrrhiza glabra, Vitis vinifera, Alpinia officinarum, and Urtica dioica, and theirs effect on both bleeding individuals with normal hemostatic parameters and in patients with deficient primary and/or secondary hemostasis, found that ABS also modulates the cellular apoptotic responses to hemorrhagic stress, as well as hemostatic hemodynamic activity. Through its effects on the endothelium, blood cells, angiogenesis, cellular proliferation, vascular dynamics, and wound healing, according to "Ankaferd hemostat in the management of gastrointestinal hemorrhages" by Beyazit Y, Kekilli M, Haznedaroglu IC, Kayacetin E, Basaranoglu M.(3)

4. Burns
In the analyzing Combudoron, a composed of extracts from arnica and stinging nettle, and its effect in treating partial thickness burns and insect bites in Europe, found that Combudoron seems to have positive effects on healing of grade 2 laser induced burns which deserve further investigation, according to "Arnica and stinging nettle for treating burns - a self-experiment" by Huber R, Bross F, Schempp C, Gründemann C.(4)

5. Antioxidants
In the observation of the hepatoprotective, nephroprotective, and antioxidant activity of Urtica dioica L methanolic extract (UDME) against CP toxicity in Erhlich ascites tumor (EAT)-bearing mice, found that almost all doses of UDME performed a significant (P < 0.05) preventive role against CP toxicity by decreasing aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, lactate dehydrogenase, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation levels, and myeloperoxidase activity, as well as increasing reduced glutathione content, superoxide dismutase, catalase, glutathione S-transferase, and glutathione peroxidase activities. This suggests that UDME has a protective capacity and antioxidant activity against CP toxicity in EAT-bearing mice, probably by promoting antioxidative defense systems, according to "Ameliorative influence of Urtica dioica L against cisplatin-induced toxicity in mice bearing Ehrlich ascites carcinoma" by Ozkol H, Musa D, Tuluce Y, Koyuncu I.(5)
6. Colitis
In the determination of the effect of Urtica dioica, known as stinging nettle, seed oil (UDO) and its effect in treatment on colonic tissue and blood parameters of trinitrobenzene sulfonic acid (TNBS)-induced colitis in rats found that UDO administration ameliorated the TNBS-induced disturbances in colonic tissue except for MDA. In conclusion, UDO, through its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant actions, merits consideration as a potential agent in ameliorating colonic inflammation, according to "The Effect of Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) Seed Oil on Experimental Colitis in Rats" by Genc Z, Yarat A, Tunali-Akbay T, Sener G, Cetinel S, Pisiriciler R, Caliskan-Ak E, Altıntas A, Demirci B.(6)

7. Antimicrobial effects
In the assessment of the antibacterial and antifungal potential of some Romanian medicinal plants, arnica--Arnica montana, wormwood--Artemisia absinthium and nettle--Urtica dioica, found that The vegetal extracts showed antimicrobial activity preferentially directed against the planktonic fungal and bacterial growth, while the effect against biofilm formation and development was demonstrated only against S. aureus and C. albicans, according to "In vitro antimicrobial activity of Romanian medicinal plants hydroalcoholic extracts on planktonic and adhered cells" by Stanciuc AM, Gaspar A, Moldovan L, Saviuc C, Popa M, Măruţescu L.(7)

8. Peptic ulcer
In the study of Nettle extract produced from leaves crushed to 40-70 nm fragments and its effect on peptic ulcer found that the antiulcer activity of the nettle extract from 40-70 nm fragments is comparable with the effect of buckthorn oil. Nettle extracts also hinder the excess acid secretion and diminish the acidity of stomach juice in experimental peptic ulcer caused by pylorus ligation, according to "[Gastroprotective action of the nettle extract in experimental peptic ulcer].[Article in Russian]" by Burkova VN, Boev SG, Vengerovskiĭ AI, Iudina NV, Arbuzov AG.(8)

9. Hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury
In the evaluation of the effects of Urtica dioica on hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury found that in group 3 (a total of 2 ml/kg Urtica dioica was given intraperitoneally), serum lipid hydroperoxides and ceruloplasmin levels were significantly lower, and catalase, paraoxonase, and arylesterase levels were higher than those in group 2 (a total of 2 ml/kg 0.9% saline solution was given intraperitoneally). Histopathological examination showed that liver tissue damage was significantly decreased in group 3 compared with group 2, according to "Effects of Urtica dioica on hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury in rats" by Kandis H, Karapolat S, Yildirim U, Saritas A, Gezer S, Memisogullari R.(9)

10. Severe acute respiratory syndrome
In the determination of Urtica dioica agglutinin (UDA) and it effects with an N-acetylglucosamine specificity in inhibition of viruses from Nidovirales in vitro, found that UDA neutralizes the virus infectivity, presumably by binding to the SARS-CoV spike (S) glycoprotein. Finally, the target molecule for the inhibition of virus replication was partially characterized. When UDA was exposed to N-acetylglucosamine and then UDA was added to cells just prior to adsorption, UDA did not inhibit the virus infection. These data support the conclusion that UDA might bind to N-acetylglucosamine-like residues present on the glycosylated envelope glycoproteins, thereby preventing virus attachment to cells, according to "Inhibition of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus replication in a lethal SARS-CoV BALB/c mouse model by stinging nettle lectin, Urtica dioica agglutinin" by Kumaki Y, Wandersee MK, Smith AJ, Zhou Y, Simmons G, Nelson NM, Bailey KW, Vest ZG, Li JK, Chan PK, Smee DF, Barnard DL.(10)

11. Anti diabetes
In the investigation of the protective effect of the hydroalcoholic extract of Urtica dioica leaves on the quantitative morphometric changes in the liver of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats, found that administration of extract of Urtica dioica leaves before induction of diabetic with streptozotocin has a protective effect on the morphometric alterations of hepatocytes in the periportal and perivenous zones of the liver lobule in rats, according to "Protective role of Urtica dioica L. (Urticaceae) extract on hepatocytes morphometric changes in STZ diabetic Wistar rats" by Golalipour MJ, Ghafari S, Afshar M.(11)

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Side effects
1. Sting nettle may interact with blood thine medicine. If you are using Warfarin, Clopidogrel, etc, or lowing blood pressure medicine, please consult with your doctor before taking sting nettle.
2. Do not use the herb in children or if you are pregnant or breast feeding without approval from the related field specialist.
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