Horse Chestnut: Helping Hemorrhoids for Centuries
Way before we were a thought in the Big Man’s plan, before the continents were separated into their own entities, before BIG PHARMA, indigenous cultures were using herbs and plants for all of their own health issues.
Whether it was for fungal infections or to calm their rumbling tummies, herbs and plants were known to be the go-to healing medicine.
Still, to this day, people have not forgotten the many wonders of what herbs and plants can do for our health.
So with almost 50% of people having to deal with the uncomfortable and annoying effects of hemorrhoids before the age of 50, why not use one of the most effective supplements for treating hemorrhoids?
Horse Chestnut has been used for thousands of years in traditional medicine to treat a wide variety of health issues including treatment for hemorrhoids.
What is Horse Chestnut?
Horse Chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum) comes from a tree which is native to the Balkan Peninsula – these countries include Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, and Bulgaria. The beauty of modern farming is now these trees can be grown worldwide for the benefit of all. Horse Chestnuts native to the United States is actually referred to as “Buckeyes.”
Fun Fact: Why was it named Horse Chestnut? It was assumed horse’s used to eat the seeds and flowers off this tree to clear their chest and help them breathe. But, owner’s eventually found the seeds were actually poisonous to horses in its raw farm due to the toxic substance esculin.
Luckily, humans learned how to process the esculin out of horse chestnut seeds to enjoy its many health benefits.
The seeds, bark, leaves, and flowers of Horse Chestnut have been used in the treatment of a number of conditions for centuries.
Horse Chestnuts most common form – seed extract – has a powerful anti-inflammatory effect which has helped with joint pain, arthritis, gastrointestinal problems, leg cramps, and fever.
Today this seed extract is also used for disorders of the vessels to help build up the walls of veins, increase circulation, and swelling after surgery. Horse chestnut seed extract is widely used these days for chronic venous insufficiency which is a problem of the vessels in your legs not being able to pump blood back to your heart.
In Europe, this extract is approved for the treatment of varicose veins in the legs and hemorrhoids – a form of varicose veins occurring in the anus or rectum.
Horse Chestnut for Hemorrhoids
Hemorrhoids are swollen veins around the anus or rectum due to increased pressure in the lower abdomen or rectum.
They’re truly a pain in the butt and mostly caused by chronic constipation and straining during bowel movements. Hemorrhoids can cause a small amount of rectal bleeding, and you might notice it either in the toilet or when you wipe.
The first record of Aesculus hippocastanum being used for hemorrhoids dates back to the 1800 – surely not the first time it was used, just the first time someone thought, “Hey, we should record this!” That’s well over 250 years of recorded effectiveness.
Horse Chestnut contains multiple chemical compounds called saponin and flavonoid, its most potent substance called aescin is what reduces inflammation and the swelling of blood vessels helping with rectal bleeding.
Horse Chestnut hemorrhoid treatment helps by:
- Strengthening the walls of the veins
- Reducing swelling of these vessels
- Preventing any further break down of capillaries
- Improving vessel elasticity
- Prevent the release of enzymes which break down collagen
In a recent study Horse Chestnut has shown to help promote contraction forces in fibroblast. These cells are necessary for the wound healing process and also aid in rectal bleeding and hemorrhoids.
How to Use Horse Chestnut Extract
Horse Chestnut can be taken orally or applied topically for the use of hemorrhoids or anal fissures.
The recommended oral dose is 300 mg twice a day 12 hours apart for treating hemorrhoids. Many topical hemorrhoids creams contain horse chestnut so follow the directions for topical applications.
If you happen to run upon a Horse Chestnut tree – please remember these seeds contain esculin which is poisonous in its raw form and should not be eaten.
When esculin is removed, Horse Chestnut is well tolerated by most people and remarkably safe with rare side effects. Most manufactures remove esculin from their products so just check the bottle for safety and make sure you are buying your supplements from a reputable source.
Anyone struggling with the following health problems should not take Horse Chestnut:
- Bleeding disorders
- Liver disease
- Kidney disease
Also, mothers who are pregnant or nursing should speak to their doctor before taking Horse Chestnut. Anyone who has severe hemorrhoids should also consult their doctor before any use of supplements.
Other Benefits of Supplementing with Horse Chestnut
Horse Chestnut also contains the flavonoids quercetin and kaempferol which act as powerful antioxidant to help remove free radicals in your body and combat disease.
Horse Chestnut has been successful in treating the following health issues, but not enough research has been concluded for proven effectiveness:
- Chronic venous insufficiency
- Enlarged prostate
- Menstrual cramps
- Fertility in men
- Certain cancers
Horse Chestnut has also been shown to help the effectiveness of prebiotics, a non-digestible fiber found in food, which can aid in digestion and gut health. Its chemical compound saponins and flavonoids also help eliminate methane in your gut reducing bloating and abdominal discomfort.
As Hippocrates said, “All disease begins in the gut.”
With the use of Horse Chestnut, you don’t have to suffer silently with rectal bleeding and hemorrhoids anymore. With a natural hemorrhoid treatment, you can reduce hemorrhoid flare-ups making it a thing of the past.