Spring holds a graceful wonderment of nourishment for our health. After a long winter of heavy eating and less then abundant outside exercise we are more in need of some nourishing and cleansing herbal work then ever! Though we can get very elaborate in how to obtain these actions, I often find a simple walk through herbalism is most effective and satisfying. I have two very big favorites in the herbal world that are growing in abundance this time of year and they were custom designed for the work we most need in this season. Dandelions and Nettles!
There is a basic reality that we need to recognize; most illness and disease is the result of either a lack of needed nourishment for the body or else an abundance of unhealthy accumulation from numerous avenues. With the springtime use of fresh Nettles and Dandelions we can address both of these issues rather well!
Let’s look at nourishment first. Both Dandelions and Nettles offer us a vast array of minerals, which are often the very nutrients that we lack. Calcium, Chromium, Magnesium and Zinc are the highest minerals in Nettles however you will also find a healthy dose of Cobalt, Manganese, Phosphorus, Potassium, Riboflavin, Selenium, Silicon, Thiamine, Vit. A C as well as Protein! The list of nutrients reads much as the label on a multi vitamin/mineral supplement would.
Dandelion is also loaded up with nutrients like Iron, Manganese, Phosphorus, Protein, Sodium, Vit. A. While these are the highest level nutrients it also contains a full array of many others. Honestly the list is so long that I am going to refrain from a complete listing just for the sake of space. The key point is that it is a little yellow wonder of nutrients for us all.
Both of these herbs have the action of a diuretic as well as a gentle laxative. While these actions are very gentle in these plants, they are also very effective. Both support and clear the liver and kidneys. What is important to see here is that while it can be very dangerous to use either laxatives or diuretics within the allopathic model, that is not the case with these herbs. There is almost no chance they can cause any harm because they are re-supplying the body of vital nutrients at the same time they are assisting the eliminatory organs to rid themselves of excess. So you can be assured that while the bad stuff is leaving the good stuff is being re-supplied in balanced ratios.
These little jewels do much more for us then cleanse and nourish but since these are absolute keys to all health, we will keep our focus on those issues in this short article. If you have skin issues, Diabetes, Cancer, digestive illness or any of many others, you may want to take a serious look at these plants. But in all truthfulness the reason they work so well to heal disease and illness is the very same reason they help us with our spring cleaning issues.
A simple infusion (tea) made from these little lovelies is the very best way to gain their benefits. One little note here of great importance. The full name for Nettles is Stinging Nettles and you may have already realized why, if you touch them, they will sting! Once they are heated this will not be a problem but you need to be mindful when using them fresh. The young tops of the plant hold the best properties so use them in abundance during the spring, while they are young. The seeds and roots of Nettles hold benefits too but in different ways, in the spring use the fresh, new leaves. Dandelions are best used in full bloom and or the fresh new leaves during the spring. The roots of Dandelion are used medicinally too but not in the same ways and only during the fall.
Drink this infusion, either as a blend of the two herbs or separately. I tend to enjoy mine separately and drink the nettles early in the day, picking them fresh as soon as the sun has warmed up enough to go out and gather. Dandelions are not early risers though, they don’t seem to bloom fully until the sun has warmed them up so I save them for later in the afternoon. One little puzzle I will leave you to figure out; both of these plants are high in minerals, which are absorbed better in the body during rest/sleep. However since these plants do have laxative and diuretic actions it can be problematic to drink as a bedtime drink. What to do, what to do! I enjoy mine all the way up to dinnertime and then use some of my other favorite friends for bedtime. Chamomile and Lavender are up at the top of my list.
Well, this little blog has become longer then I intended so I’ll stop here. I sure hope you can partake in these herbs and benefit from the gifts our Father has hidden into these little weeds, I mean jewels!