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Allergic or histamine reactions can cause hives, itchy runny eyes, body itching, wheezing, rapid breathing and heart rate and more. Utilizing fresh nettle, Urtica dioica, tincture and/or fresh plantain, Plantago spp., both internally and externally can bring rapid relief in many cases.

Nettles are most effective in the long term fresh tinctured in alcohol. Fresh nettles with fresh garlic (opens breathing passages), pulverized in a food processor with some olive oil or water and frozen in ice cube trays and stored in freezer safe containers work just as well, although we need to thaw out the cube first. That takes some time. Warm, not hot, water can accelerate the thawing process. Drop a frozen nettle/garlic cube in a cup and pour 4 ounces of warm water. Stir and allow to thaw, then drink.

Plantain is best fresh juiced. Tincturing and drying markedly reduces plantain’s antihistamine action. To preserve plantain juice, freeze in ice cube trays or add 20% by volume 151 vodka. Herbal juice preserved this way is called a succus. Store the succus in the fridge for up to a year. To apply the succus or tincture, generously soak a cloth or paper towel and apply as a compress to the affected area and just beyond. The compress with fresh succus may be reapplied several times until relief is 100%. The succus may be taken internally as well.

For mild to severe allergic reactions, up to 4 dropperfuls of nettle tincture and/or a couple ounces of succus can be taken every 10-15 minutes for several hours or until symptoms completely subside. Note that the chlorogenic acid in nettles is stimulating, which can affect the body in a positive way, but can be a bit alarming when larger amounts of the fresh tincture are used.

In an anaphylactic shock situation, please use common sense. These remedies may be taken on the way to the hospital. While taking enough of the nettle, garlic and plantain remedies may eliminate the anaphylactic shock, there is the chance that they simply will buy time in order to get to western medicine help.

Suzanne "Queen Bee" Tabert 🐝

Suzanne Tabert, bioregional herbalist, speaker, and author, is director of herbal education and herbal mentor at the Cedar Mountain Herb School. An herbal medicine instructor for 35+ years, Suzanne teaches with great passion and excitement, bringing her wealth of herbal knowledge to students in an engaging and vibrant manner. She is the primary instructor at CMHS and an adjunct faculty at Bastyr University. Taking students to wild places and giving them tools to engage and connect with flora, fauna, and the exquisite beauty of nature is the icing on the cake of life, and one way that Suzanne is making a difference in the world, one person, one group at a time. Cedar Mountain Herb School is a member of the American Herbalists Guild, Partnership in Education with United Plant Savers, and the American Herb Association.