Nettle Tea: 6 Health Benefits, How to Make Your Own, and a Warning

Medically Reviewed on 7/21/2022
Nettle Tea: 6 Health Benefits, How to Make Your Own, and a Warning
Learn about the nutritional profile and health benefits of nettle tea

Nettle tea is made from stinging nettles (Urtica dioica), which are native to Europe, Asia, and northern Africa. 

Nettle leaves, stems, and roots contain medicinal properties and are used to make powders, creams, teas, and tinctures.

Learn about the nutritional profile and health benefits of nettle tea.

What is the nutritional profile of nettle tea?

Table: Nutrients in 1 cup (89 grams) of stinging nettles, blanched
Nutrient Amount
Calories 37.4
Carbohydrates 6.6 grams
Fiber 6.14 grams
Protein 2.41 grams
Vitamin A 1790 International Units
Beta-carotene 1020 µg
Vitamin K 444 µg
Vitamin B6 0.092 mg
Folate 12.5 µg
Potassium 279 mg
Sodium 3.56 mg
Zinc 0.303 mg
Copper 0.068 mg
Manganese 0.693 mg
Phosphorus 63.2 mg
Magnesium 50.7 mg

Nettle tea also contains the following nutrients:

6 health benefits of nettle tea

1. Reduces the risk of disease and infection

Nettle tea has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties that can help prevent infection and inhibit disease-causing bacteria. Certain compounds in nettle tea act as antihistamines and lower inflammation in the body, reducing allergy symptoms.

Antioxidants in nettle tea such as polyphenols, carotenoids, and terpenoids can help prevent chronic diseases such as obesity, heart disease, and cancer.

2. Lowers blood pressure

Nettle tea contains phenols that have a diuretic effect on the body, causing volume depletion in your blood that can help lower blood pressure. Nettles also have compounds that act as calcium channel blockers. which can help reduce the force of muscle contractions in the heart.

3. Helps with diabetes management

Nettle tea can improve the function of the pancreas to release more insulin, which can be beneficial for people with diabetes.

Studies have found that nettle extract administered to people with type II diabetes along with standard diabetic treatment with antihyperglycemic drugs led to improved blood glucose levels. Although the findings are encouraging, further studies are needed to evaluate whether nettle is a valuable supplement to standard diabetic therapies.

4. Improves eye health

Nettle tea contains significant amounts of beta carotene and vitamin A, both of which have been demonstrated to improve eyesight and prevent loss of vision. Beta carotene plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy retina and ensuring the eyes respond to light properly.

5. May treat symptoms of enlarged prostate

Nettle tea is rich in polyphenols, which have the potential to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or enlarged prostate. BPH symptoms include difficulty urinating, urinary tract infections, and kidney stones. A study conducted on a group of men with BPH showed a reduction in prostate size and symptoms after consuming nettle tea.

6. Alleviates symptoms of osteoarthritis

Nettle tea has anti-inflammatory properties that help alleviate pain and inflammation in the joints and muscles. Studies have demonstrated that regular consumption of nettle tea may relieve joint discomfort in patients with arthritis.


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How to make nettle tea

You can use dried nettle leaves or freshly chopped leaves to make nettle tea.


  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 tablespoons of dried nettle leaves or ½ cup of freshly chopped nettle leaves


  • Boil the water and pour it into a pot.
  • Add the leaves to the boiled water and stir.
  • Cover the pot and let it steep for 5 minutes.
  • Strain the tea and serve hot.

You can add honey for sweetness and an extra boost of nutrients. You can also try adding herbs such as mint, rosemary, lemon verbena, thyme, or lemon balm to add brightness. 

Since nettle tea has a strong diuretic effect, avoid drinking it before bedtime.

Are there any possible side effects of nettle tea?

Side effects of nettle tea include possible allergic reactions and drug interactions. Excessive intake can also cause digestive issues, urinary problems, or rashes.

Drug interactions

You should always use any herb with caution and under the guidance of your physician.

  • Since nettle tea contains high levels of vitamins A and K, it may interact with blood thinners and increase bleeding tendency in predisposed people.
  • Nettle tea can cause a drop in blood sugar levels. If you drink this tea while taking blood sugar medicine, you may experience dizziness or fainting.
  • Nettle tea is a natural diuretic that causes increased urination and may interfere with water pills taken for edema.
  • Because nettle tea lowers blood pressure, when taken with antihypertensives, it can enhance the drug effect and cause hypotension (reduced blood pressure).
  • If you are using nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, consult your doctor before consuming nettle tea. Natural chemicals in tea may interact with these medications, resulting in dangerous adverse effects.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

Nettle leaf tea should not be consumed if you are pregnant because it can trigger uterine contractions, which can lead to miscarriage or preterm labor. Consult your doctor before consuming any type of herbal tea.

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Medically Reviewed on 7/21/2022
Image Source: iStock image

FoodData Central. Stinging Nettles, blanched (Northern Plains Indians).

Perez J. Food as Medicine Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica, Urticaceae). American Botanical Council.

Staughton J. 9 Health Benefits of Nettle Tea, How To Make It, & Its Side Effects. Organic Information Services.