What is a time of joy for many women was my darkest hour.
I have incredibly dry skin. When I was a kid, I would rub my legs together and watch white skin particles float into the sun. As an adult, I slather my face every single morning with the thickest Shea Butter possible, so I don’t leave a dead skin trail on my way to work or on my desk or on my shoulders or on my computer.
During one of my Internet research sessions, I stumbled across a little snippet that said that dry skin is a symptom of a thyroid issue. And my family has a history of thyroid issues. Crap. I may have a thyroid issue.
I'm not that into doctors, so I looked up some natural remedies and a little spiny plant caught my eye called the Stinging Nettle. Maybe if I ingest this, I thought, I will have naturally dewy skin like I have always wanted!
As I dug a little deeper into its benefits, I found that stinging nettle can also help with period flow. I am cursed forever with an abnormally heavy flow that is out to ruin ALL of my pants and sheets.
With the possibility that Stinging Nettle could give me supple skin AND maybe help my hemorrhaging uterus, I had to find it.
So the next Sunday, I made my way to my favorite herb people at the farmer's market, asked for stinging nettle. The woman behind the table brought out a bag wrapped in a bag with a green plant inside. She said that they keep it off of the table so people don’t sting themselves.
Oh. This is the real stuff.
I was curious to see what all this stinging stuff was about. After much hesitation, I grabbed the plant with my bare hands. Nothing happened. I grabbed it again, nothing. Again nothing. I figured I must have powers and be naturally immune to silly human discomforts, so I went on picking off the leaves – until it bit me. I covered my hands with Saran Wrap and proceeded.
Do you see those little poky things in the photo below? Those hurt.
First I tried a raw a smoothie from Victoria Butenko’s book, Green Smoothie Revolution, that includes mangos. Look, anything green blended is not going to taste like a milk shake. It’s going to taste like a salad with some fruit squished in it.
But the smoothie was good, and I felt good after. When Stinging Nettle is blended, the little spikes are no longer a threat.
Along came my period and I thought, Hey why don’t I give this Stinging Nettle a go and see if it will actually help my profuse blood flow?
I just want to clarify that when I say profuse, I mean bleed right through a super duper tampon every 20 minutes for five hours straight profuse. It’s rough. If I am not on top of it, like pads, tampons and frequent trips to the loo, things can get real bad fast.
I tried a cup of Nettle Tea on the first day of my period (I was out of the fresh stuff). Nothing happened; same ol’ period. I tried it on the second day to the result of a few fewer bathroom trips.
Third day: another cup and now light flow. No way! By the fourth day, my period was almost gone. No stained pants; no ruined undies. Just a regular period like normal people. I could not believe it. It came and said, “Hello, don’t mind me. Go about your day,” and left. I didn’t even have to sleep with a towel under my bum. What is this magic?!
I will certainly be trying it again next month. Not only could it potentially help with my potential thyroid issues, but it helped with my period flow in a very visible way. I am just so grateful. Now I can wear white pants everyday! Okay, I never wear white pants, but it’s nice to have that option.
I would love to hear about your period remedies. Do you know of another way to use Stinging Nettle or another herb altogether?