What is Horse Chestnut?
Horse chestnut is an herbal remedy used to treat a variety of conditions, particularly those characterized by inflammation. Horse-chestnut trees are named for marks on their branches, which look something like horseshoes. The trees are native to northern India and Greece and are now found throughout Europe.
The buckeye tree, which is native to the United States, is a variety of horse chestnuts with similar properties. The main ingredient said to be responsible for horse chestnut benefits is a triterpine glycoside known as aescin. Both the bark and the nut of the tree are used to make horse chestnut extract.
Horse chestnut extract is used to treat arthritis, fever, and inflammation. Treatment of edema and varicose veins are perhaps the most common use of horse chestnut extract. Horse-chestnut-benefits the body by reducing inflammation, which in turn alleviates symptoms like swelling, pain, and fatigue associated with conditions like edema.
Horse chestnut extract can also increase blood flow, and it may be as effective as compression stockings for treating edema in the legs.