Stinging Nettle Root Extract Side Effects



Extracts from the roots of the stinging nettle are used for various alternative medicine treatments, including the reduction of enlarged prostates, according to the University of Michigan Health System. This benefit may be due to the high level of lectins — proteins that bind to sugars — and complex sugars in the plant’s roots. Just because the root extract is natural doesn’t mean it’s safe. Discuss your stinging nettle supplementation plans with your doctor before taking the herb, because it may have several negative side effects.

Pregnancy Problems

If you’re pregnant or trying to become pregnant, avoid using stinging nettle extract products. The herb may affect your menstrual cycle and may even cause you to experience a miscarriage, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

Gastrointestinal Discomfort

Every body is different, and yours may not react positively to orally ingesting stinging nettle extract. Gastrointestinal discomfort may occur, according to the University of Michigan, and can include a sore stomach, nausea and vomiting.

What Are the Benefits of Artichoke Leaf Extract?



Globe artichokes are perennial plants related to the thistle. They are native to Europe and the Mediterranean. An extract from their leaves is available in the form of a nutritional supplement, which is believed to have a number of medicinal benefits.Consult your physician if you are considering taking an artichoke leaf extract supplement.

Lowering Cholesterol

According to Science Daily, Dr. Rafe Bundy and his team of researchers at the University of Reading in the United Kingdom, have discovered that artichoke leaf extract can help to lower cholesterol levels in patients with slightly elevated cholesterol that were otherwise healthy. The extract is rich in flavonoids, which can help to prevent cardiovascular disease.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Irritable bowel syndrome is a chronic digestive disorder, which can cause stomach pain, constipation, bloating, gas, loss of appetite, emotional distress and depression. In August 2004 The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine published a study claiming that artichoke leaf extract can improve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.

What Are the Benefits of Maitake Mushroom Extract?


The maitake mushroom is an edible species that is commonly found in extract form today. According to the American Cancer Society, the maitake mushroom contains beta-glucan, which has powerful effects on the immune system. Additionally, while there is no medical evidence to confirm that maitake mushroom extract is effective in treating or preventing cancer, some individuals utilize the formula for this purpose. Consult your health-care provider for complete information on maitake mushroom extract and its benefits.

Builds Immunity

Maitake mushrooms primarily grow in the northeastern parts of Japan and the United States, and is credited by traditional Chinese medicine to be able to fight disease and improve immunity, according to Nicholas Perricone, MD. Taking maitake extract regularly effectively boosts the immune system, lowers blood pressure, and helps to fight off harmful diseases. The mushroom is most effective due to its content of beta-glucan, which is a polysaccharide compound that enhances the immune system by activating macrophage cells, natural killer cells and T-cells. These cells play an important role in building general immunity and preventing free radicals from harming the body’s systems.

Can You Use Honey Instead of Vanilla Extract When Baking Cookies?


When you’ve made sure to buy all the basics for cookies — flour, eggs, butter — it’s easy to forget that your bottle of vanilla in the pantry is empty. Honey will make the cookies sweeter and will give them a subtle honey taste, but won’t impart any vanilla flavor. You can use a few other ingredients to try to add flavor to your cookies in place of vanilla.

Vanilla Extract Basics

To many people, vanilla might be almost synonymous with sweet. It usually shows up in desserts like ice cream, frostings, cakes and cookies. But while vanilla goes well with sweet flavors, it’s not a sweetener. The vanilla bean on its own has a complex flavor — slightly floral and a little bitter. Vanilla extract is made by soaking the vanilla bean in alcohol. When you use vanilla extract in a recipe, it adds its distinctive flavor, not sweetness.

Substituting Honey for Vanilla

You can add honey if you would like to add honey flavor to your cookies, but it will not mimic vanilla. If you do add honey, reduce the amount of sugar you use so your cookies won’t be overly sweet.

What Are the Benefits of Alfalfa Extract?


For centuries, healers have turned to the alfalfa plant as a naturopathic treatment for several common ailments. Although alfalfa supplements have been the subject of only limited scientific inquiry, preliminary evidence suggests that it can help prevent or treat several diseases and conditions. Aqueous and ethanol-based extracts of alfalfa offer a concentrated source of the plant’s natural medicinal compounds. Consult your health care provider before using any nutritional supplement to treat a medical condition.

Micronutrient Content

Alfalfa extract offers a concentrated source of several micronutrients, or vitamins and minerals. According to NutritionData, an online service provided by “Self” magazine, sprouted alfalfa seeds are an excellent source of vitamin K, which is essential for normal platelet function. Alfalfa extract also contains six B-vitamins, vitamin C and beta-carotene. Because of alfalfa extract’s high vitamin K content, it is not an appropriate supplement for people taking anticoagulants such as warfarin.

Cholesterol Support

According to the National Institutes of Health, or NIH, compounds in alfalfa may help reduce low-density lipoprotein, or “bad” cholesterol levels, without impacting “good” cholesterol. The NIH also reports that alfalfa reduces cholesterol plaques in the arteries of the heart, a serious condition known as atherosclerosis. Although preliminary evidence is encouraging, the NIH notes that there is insufficient evidence to conclusively prove alfalfa extract’s benefits for treating high cholesterol. Do not stop taking any cholesterol-controlling medication unless your doctor instructs you to do so.

Olive Leaf Extract and Arthritis


Approximately 50 million adults in the United States have some form of arthritis, according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. Since there is no cure for the painful, sometimes debilitating condition, patients often turn to alternative medicine in the form of foods and supplements to help. The ancient Egyptians used olive leaf as a medicine, but it wasn’t until 2005 that scientific research began to show that olive leaf extracts could also help treat arthritis.

Olive Leaf Benefits

Olive leaf extracts are made from the fresh or dried leaves of the same plant species that produces olive fruit and olive oil. The extract contains the compounds oleuropein and oleuropeoside, which are polyphenols, or antioxidants that can protect against cell damage from harmful free radicals. Oleuropein and oleuropeoside relax and dilate blood vessels, they are antimicrobial, and they support your immune system.

Arthritis Inflammation

Arthritis is a term that refers to inflammation in your joints. Although inflammation ordinarily protects your body from infection and foreign substances, when your immune system goes haywire, it mistakenly targets and damages your body’s own tissues. A study published in July 2011 in the journal “Phytotherapy Research” verified that olive leaf extract has the ability to target inflammation by reducing production of cytokines and enzymes that are markers for the inflammatory process.

Grapefruit Seed Extract for a Yeast Infection


Yeast infections are a common occurrence for women, with three out of four women experiencing one in their lifetime according to Several methods, both prescription and nonprescription, are available to treat them. One natural treatment that is inexpensive and purported by natural health practitioners to be effective is the ingestion of grapeseed extract, or GSE. This supplement acts as a nature-based antibiotic and antifungal that kills off proliferating yeast.


GSE comes from the rind and seeds of the grapefruit. According to, a website overseen by medical doctors, it is a broad-spectrum, natural antibiotic that can kill a wide variety of pathogens. Along with bacteria and protozoa, it kills the yeast in both vaginal and systemic yeast infections. It is considered generally safe for most people and can be used for long periods of time without upsetting the beneficial flora in the gut, unlike antibiotics.

Dr. Allan Sachs, a proponent of using GSE for candida, recommends that a cleansing diet that is low in sugar and starches be used in conjunction to remove the yeast.

The Calories in Pure Vanilla Extract


Pure vanilla extract is a lovely thing: aromatic, flavorful and a core part of any gourmet baker’s pantry. Because a typical recipe calls for only small amounts of vanilla, it doesn’t contribute significantly to the calorie count.


One teaspoon of pure vanilla extract contains 12 calories, while 1 tablespoon contains 37 calories.


To meet the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s regulations for pure vanilla extract, it must contain 13.35 ounces of vanilla beans per gallon during extraction and 35 percent ethyl alcohol. It should have no added sugar.


Inhaling the scent of vanilla might help calm you and aid in weight loss, according to Georges M. Halpern, M.D., Ph.D. in “The Healing Trail: Essential Oils of Madagascar.”

What Are the Benefits of Onion Extract for Acne Scars?

Acne scars form when the layers of skin under the epidermis become damaged due to a large blemish, whitehead, blackhead or other acne-related lesion. When the skin becomes damaged, excess collagen fibers can form, which can cause an irregular pattern–resulting in a scar. Many commercial creams currently utilize onion extract due to its effect on inflammation. In order to reduce the visibility of these scars, an acne treatment cream containing onion extract may be of benefit.


When applied regularly to an acne scar, onion extract can reduce inflammation in the skin, according to Go Ask Alice. This not only reduces redness that can accompany a newly forming scar, it also can reduce the scar’s size. A study conducted on the effectiveness of onion extract conducted by M. Hosnuter, et. al.,published in the June 2007 issue of the “Journal of Wound Care”, found that onion extract applied daily to a scar helped to reduce inflammation and discoloration. This is especially beneficial for treating acne scars, which tend to be on the face and are more noticeable when the scarred area is inflamed.

How to Extract Oil From the Skin of Oranges


Orange oil is an essential oil derived from the glands of the orange peel. Pale to dark orange in color, it has a strong, fragrant aroma that is uplifting to the senses. Orange oil may be used in cooking and baking or as a treatment in alternative medicine. Alternative medicine practitioners often use orange oil as an anti-inflammatory, antidepressant and as a sedative. You can prepare orange oil at home for your own personal use.

Step 1

Peel the skin of 20 large oranges. Put the skins in a bowl, and set them aside to dry for two hours.

Step 2

Process the orange skins in a food processor until they become a very dry paste, which will usually take about five minutes.

Step 3

Put the grounded orange peels into a Mason jar. Add 1 cup of vodka, or enough to cover the skins. Cover the jar with a lid.

Step 4

Put the jar in a sunny area of your house, and leave it there for about three days. Shake the jar at least twice a day.