Yesterday I was collecting female seeds from the nettle and drying them out to use in bread, porridge, smoothies and seed bars. You can tell the female nettles as the seeds hang down in big clumps, whereas male nettle seeds are on sparse strands and point up or out to the side. Female nettle seeds are full of vitamins, iron, calcium and essential fatty acids. They are great for fatigue and burnout, and are anti inflammatory. Recent studies have shown that they can also slow down renal failure and repair the liver. It is best not to eat over 30g of them a day, though, as they are a stimulant and could keep you awake all night.
I dry my nettle seeds in my conservatory but a dehydrator could be used. I use gloves when picking the nettles and cut the stems off and place them into a bag. I then strip the seeds off at home and put the nettle stalks into my compost to add a bit of extra goodness.
Dried nettle seeds are a good substitute for poppy or chia seeds, which are not cheap to buy. How crazy is it that we all buy the expensive alternatives when nettles are free and abundant and all around us? It is even more mad that most people don’t even know. There are so many other plants out there that are good for our health, and could help with minor ailments, but naivety has us popping pills instead.