Named for its visual resemblance to a horse’s tail, the multitude of uses and benefits of the horsetail (Equisetum) herb spans from the medicinal to the cosmetic. Being the last genus of its family, no other natural sources compares to the high level of the mineral silica found in horsetail. The silica mineral is an active agent in the health and upkeep of several of the cosmetic components of the body.
This herb does interact with the body and other drugs.* It is important to heed the warnings, research any possible interactions with the drugs you are taking, and consult with a doctor or medical professional before adding a supplement to your daily regimen.
Hair and Balding
Silica is an important mineral containing compounds that promote healthy, shiny hair. The supplement is often recommended to those experiencing hair loss as a remedy to combat the shedding. To receive the benefits, horsetail is either consumed internally or used in a hair rinse. It strengthens and improves circulation, driving more blood to the scalp, which is vital for new hair growth, and sustaining those existing.
Horsetail has astringent and anti-inflammatory properties that make it a valuable treatment for rashes, wounds, and other skin ailments. Silica promotes the body’s production of collagen, the main part of connective body tissue. This is where the supplement derives its anti-aging effects; preventing skin sag, improving skin appearance, tone, and overall health.
Made up of keratin, the same material as hair, fingernail health benefits from the horsetail herb. They become stronger. There’ve been reports of nails clearing up and disappearance of white spots. Overall nail growth improves.
Horsetail has a diuretic effect, which makes it effective in losing water weight. Water pills tend to include the flora related to horsetail. Among the uses for diuretics, are detox programs, to lose water weight, treatment for kidney stones, and high blood pressure.
Teeth and Gums
Tooth enamel hardens and gum health enhances with taking horsetail. Its active compounds work to prevent gum recession and repair the skin tissue of the gums area. Known for treating gingivitis and bleeding, inflamed gums, horsetail is the herb that receives solid recommendations.
Treats Urinary Tract Infections
According to the Swedish Urology Group, "approximately 40% of women and 12% of men have a urinary tract infection at some time in their life.” Horsetail relieves and soothes the symptoms of a UTI. Before modern medicine, curing this ailment relieved heavily upon herbs. Horsetail’s detoxing effect flushes the kidneys and bladder of bacteria and toxins. Removing them from the body promotes the healing and recovery from a UTI.
*Caution, horsetail blocks absorption of thiamine, which, if taken long-term, can result in a thiamine deficiency. Its been known to prevent the body from flushing out lithium, which can result in serious interactions and over dosage. It also rids the body of potassium, which, again, can lead to deficiency. Amongst other reasons, horsetail is not recommended for children due to it containing trace amounts of nicotine.