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Side Effects of Stinging Nettle

Last updated on July 29, 2012

stinging nettleStinging nettle is a popular home remedy for arthritis, allergies, water retention, and much more. Here are the potential side effects of stinging nettle and known contraindications to be aware of before taking it.

Side Effects
The most common side effect of stinging nettle is an upset stomach when nettle is taken internally. If you are taking stinging nettle for the first time, start out with a lower dose in order to determine how your stomach will react. It may also cause diarrhea or fluid retention. If stinging nettle is used externally, it may cause a rash or skin irritation.

Pregnant women should not use stinging nettle because experts believe there is the possibility that it might cause miscarriage. Do not use this supplement if you are breastfeeding and don’t give stinging nettle to young children.

Because it has a diuretic effect, make sure to drink extra water when taking nettle supplements in order to avoid dehydration.

Do not take stinging nettle or consult with your doctor before taking it if you are taking any of the following drugs:

Blood thinners like Warfarin, Plavix, or aspirin.

Blood pressure drugs including ACE inhibitors, beta blockers, or calcium channel blockers.


Diabetes drugs



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