The horse chestnut tree is native to Asia and northern Greece, but it is now cultivated in many areas of Europe and North America. The tree produces fruits that are made up of a spiny capsule containing one to three large seeds, known as horse chestnuts. Traditionally, many of the aerial parts of the horse chestnut tree, including the seeds, leaves, and bark, were used in medicinal preparations. Modern extracts of horse chestnut are usually made from the seeds, which are high in the active constituent aescin (also known as escin).
Traditionally Horse chestnut was considered as a remedy to relieve cold symptoms and to bring down a fever. More recent research in Europe has seen Horse chestnut establish itself to assist in the management of venous insufficiency and related symptoms such as varicose veins and soothes hemorrhoids. Its reported actions are an ability to strengthen and tones the veins. Also a reported astringent and anti-inflammatory.
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