Category: 

What Are the Benefits of Horse Chestnut?

Horse chestnut extract is often used to treat varicose veins.
Article Details
  • Written By: Lumara Lee
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 04 September 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
  • Print this Article
Free Widgets for your Site/Blog
A walnut can be used to remove furniture scratches.  more...

October 1 ,  1890 :  Yosemite National Park was established.  more...

Horse chestnut is an expectorant, decongestant, tonic, astringent, and anti-inflammatory. The benefits of horse chestnut include its use as a natural remedy to treat such diverse afflictions as fluid retention, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, arthritis, and sprains. Some other benefits of horse chestnut are its ability to lower fever, increase blood circulation, and ease the symptoms of phlebitis. Its antioxidant properties help remove toxins from the body and boost the immune system.

An astringent causes tissues to contract, decreasing discharges of bodily secretions such as blood. Among the benefits of horse chestnut is its astringent action that gives it the ability to shrink and reduce the bleeding, pain, and inflammation of hemorrhoids. It also tones and strengthens blood vessels. This improves circulation and prevents the walls of capillaries, arteries, and veins from breaking down and leaking, which is what makes horse chestnut so beneficial in the treatment of varicose veins.

Some other benefits of horse chestnut are its effectiveness in treating leg cramps, bruising, and swelling. It is a powerful agent for reducing edema in the lower legs. The tea has been used as a folk remedy to treat diarrhea. Horse chestnut has been used topically as an ointment or cream to promote the healing of rashes, sores, and eczema. Aescin is the most prevalent medicinal constituent in horse chestnut and the agent that gives it such powerful therapeutic properties.

Ad

The horse chestnut isn’t actually a chestnut; it is a member of the buckeye family. It gets its name due to its green, spiny casing and shiny brown nut that resemble those of chestnuts. The seeds, bark, and nuts contain flavones and saponins, the substances that promote a healthy vascular system and provide some of the other healing benefits of horse chestnut. Native to the Balkans of southeastern Europe, the horse chestnut has been planted all over the world in temperate climates for the shade provided by its beautiful, spreading canopy.

Horse chestnut shouldn’t be used by pregnant women or nursing mothers. Herbs can have side effects just like pharmaceutical drugs do, and one of the side effects of horse chestnut can be thinning of the blood. This is why horse chestnut shouldn’t be used by people who are taking blood-thinning drugs. Other possible side effects of horse chestnut include allergic reaction, itch, and upset stomach. Allergic reactions are rare, but if any swelling occurs as a result of taking horse chestnut, medical care should be consulted immediately.

Ad

More from Wisegeek

You might also Like

Discuss this Article

Heavanet
Post 2

@talentryto- Horse chestnut is less likely to cause certain side effects when used as a cream than when taken orally, so you shouldn't be too concerned. However, it can cause irritation and itching at first, especially on individuals who have problems with sensitive skin. To be on the safe side, you should talk to your doctor or dermatologist before using any form of horse chestnut.

Talentryto
Post 1

Even though horse chestnut is natural, I am concerned about the possible side effects of taking it. I would like to start using it in cream form for skin rashes. Does anyone have some advice?

Post your comments

Post Anonymously

Login

username
password
forgot password?

Register

username
password
confirm
email