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Horsetail

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Horsetail

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Also indexed as: Bottlebrush Plant, Equisetum arvense, Scouring Rush, Shave Grass
Horsetail: Main Image© Steven Foster
Common names:
Bottlebrush Plant, Scouring Rush, Shave Grass
Botanical names:
Equisetum arvense

How It Works

Horsetail is rich in silicic acid and silicates, which provide approximately 2–3% elemental silicon. Potassium, aluminum, and manganese, along with fifteen different types of flavonoids, are also found in this herb. The presence of these flavonoids, as well as saponins, is believed to cause the diuretic effect, while the silicon content is thought to exert a connective tissue-strengthening and anti-arthritic action. Some experts have suggested the element silicon in horsetail is also a vital component for bone and cartilage formation. Anecdotal reports suggest that horsetail may be of some use in the treatment of brittle nails.

How to Use It

The German Commission E monograph suggests up to 6 grams of the herb per day for internal use. A tincture can also be used at 2 teaspoons (10 ml) three times per day. A horsetail tea may be made by boiling 2–4 teaspoons of the herb in one cup (250 ml) of water for five minutes. Steep the tea for an additional 15 minutes, strain, and drink two or three times daily. The tea can also be used externally as well as internally.

Copyright © 2011 Aisle7.

The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2013.

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