Springtime is a big allergy season where I live in the mid-Atlantic. As the cherry blossoms begin to fade and everything else bursts to life, the amount of pollen and allergens in the air multiplies like crazy, and before I know it my allergies go bananas. Sometimes it’s just a lot of sneezing with an itchy throat. At its worst, spring allergies manifest just like an intense head cold—the kind that makes you want to crawl back in bed and stay there.
Remarkably, I’ve been managing my allergies without the need for over the counter medicine this spring. It just so happens that nettles, one of the main ingredients in an herbal tea blend I’ve been drinking everyday for the last few months, is a rock star natural remedy for allergies. Nettles contain a wealth of nutrients such as quercetin (an antihistamine), chlorophyll, iron, potassium, magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin B, vitamin K1, and minerals, flavonoids and carotenoids. Additionally, the high amount of chlorophyll gives nettles alkalinizing and detoxifying properties. Nettle tea is a great nutritional supplement for strengthening hair and nails, and the anti-inflammatory properties of this herb can help calm skin problems like acne and eczema.
For allergy purposes, nettles are an excellent natural remedy because they act as a natural antihistamine that treats allergy symptoms like congestion, runny nose, sneezing, itching and swelling of the nasal passages. While you can purchase nettle capsules, I really enjoy making an herbal tea from nettles that I can sip all day long, and now it’s become my go-to spring allergy relief herbal tea remedy.
How to Make Nettle and Peppermint Herbal Tea
When making herbal tea for nutritional reasons, it’s important to do a long steep using water that is warm but not boiling. I like to steep my tea overnight so that it’s ready to enjoy the next day. Add 1-2 tablespoons of loose dried nettles and 1 tablespoon of dried peppermint leaves to a mason jar or similar container. Boil 2 cups of water and let cool until it’s warm but won’t burn your skin upon contact. Add the warm water to your mason jar, stir the herbal leaves and cover. Let the mixture steep at room temperature for at least 4 hours. Strain the tea and enjoy. Refrigerating the tea after it has steeped makes this drink cool and refreshing.
*Pregnant women and people with severe health conditions should consult a doctor before taking nettles.