What is Horse Chestnut Extract?
Horse Chestnut Extract is a natural venotonic supplement, delivered in vegetarian capsules and based on horse chestnut. Thanks to its exceptional richness in escine (normalization at 20% against 3 to 6% on average), it contributes to improve blood circulation and helps to reduce the circumference of the legs.
Horse chestnut extract (commonly abbreviated HCE or HCSE) is derived from the seeds of the horse chestnut tree (Aesculus hippocastanum). Horse chestnut is native to areas of Europe, but is now grown in many areas around the world. Aescin (also spelt escin) is the most abundant active compound of horse chestnut extract and exhibits a range of actions.
Traditionally, the whole seed was used (and sometimes even the leaves and bark), but since it was discovered that it contained an anticoagulant called aesculin, producers of natural extracts are required to remove this molecule.
However, horse chestnut extract’s content of the active substance aescin has been increased as it is responsible for the supplement’s beneficial effects on the circulation . Our supplement also contains other active compounds responsible for its synergistic effect:
Flavonoids (particularly quercetol and kaempferol), which give the horse chestnut fruit its pigmentation (1).
Saponosides (the most active principles of which are aescin and b-aescin).
Proteins (globulin and hippocastanin).
Horse Chestnut Extract Aescin
Part of used
Brown yellow powder
Loss on drying
White crystalline powder
Related substance (HPLC)
Total impurity ≤0.5%
Max single impurity ≤0.1%
It is usually taken orally (by mouth). Studies have commonly used doses of 300 mg of horse chestnut extract once or twice daily. This dose is usually equivalent to 50 mg of aescin. It has also been used topically (applied to the affected areas on the skin), normally in concentrations of 1-2%.
It is commonly available at complementary and alternative medicine stores and does not require a prescription. Complementary and alternative medicines are often not regulated and products may contain contaminants and compounds not advertised on the packaging. Care should be taken to find a product from a reputable manufacturer.In many jurisdictions it is not funded by health providers or insurance companies and can end up being quite expensive.
1. It has been shown to promote circulation through the veins.
2. Normal tone in the walls of the veins, thereby promoting return of blood to the heart. This has made both topical and internal popular in Europe for the treatment of chronic venous insufficiency and, to a lesser extent, varicose veins.
3. It also possesses anti inflammatory properties and has been shown to reduce edema (swilling with fluid) following trauma, particularly following sports injury, surgery, and head injury.