Field or common horsetail (Equisetum arvense) is a perennial fern that belongs to the genus Equisetaceae. The plant contains numerous beneficial compounds that confer it multiple health-promoting effects. 

Of these, antioxidants and silica are key. Antioxidants are molecules that fight free radicals in your body to prevent cell damage. Meanwhile, silica is a compound comprised of silicon and oxygen. It’s believed to be responsible for horsetail’s potential benefits for skin, nails, hair, and bones. 

Horsetail is known for providing many other potential benefits, including: anti-inflammatory activity, antimicrobial activity, antioxidant activity and antidiabetic affect.

Peer Reviewed Research

  1. Gründemann C, Lengen K, Sauer B, Garcia-Käufer M, Zehl M, Huber R. Equisetum arvense (common horsetail) modulates the function of inflammatory immunocompetent cells. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2014;14:283. Published 2014 Aug 4. doi:10.1186/1472-6882-14-283
  2. Steinborn C, Potterat O, Meyer U, Trittler R, Stadlbauer S, Huber R, Gründemann C. In Vitro Anti-inflammatory Effects of Equisetum arvense Are Not Solely Mediated by Silica. Planta Med. 2018 May;84(8):519-526. doi: 10.1055/s-0043-123075. Epub 2017 Dec 4. PMID: 29202511.
  3. Pallag A, Filip GA, Olteanu D, et al. Equisetum arvense L. Extract Induces Antibacterial Activity and Modulates Oxidative Stress, Inflammation, and Apoptosis in Endothelial Vascular Cells Exposed to Hyperosmotic Stress. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2018;2018:3060525. Published 2018 Feb 14. doi:10.1155/2018/3060525
  4. Radulović N, Stojanović G, Palić R. Composition and antimicrobial activity of Equisetum arvense L. essential oil. Phytother Res. 2006;20(1):85-88. doi:10.1002/ptr.1815
  5. Cetojević-Simin DD, Canadanović-Brunet JM, Bogdanović GM, et al. Antioxidative and antiproliferative activities of different horsetail (Equisetum arvense L.) extracts. J Med Food. 2010;13(2):452-459. doi:10.1089/jmf.2008.0159
  6. Mimica-Dukic N, Simin N, Cvejic J, Jovin E, Orcic D, Bozin B. Phenolic compounds in field horsetail (Equisetum arvense L.) as natural antioxidants. Molecules. 2008;13(7):1455-1464. Published 2008 Jul 17. doi:10.3390/molecules13071455
  7. Soleimani S, Azarbaizani FF, Nejati V. The effect of Equisetum arvense L. (Equisetaceae) in histological changes of pancreatic beta-cells in streptozotocin-induced diabetic in rats. Pak J Biol Sci. 2007;10(23):4236-4240. doi:10.3923/pjbs.2007.4236.4240
  8. Safiyeh S, Fathallah FB, Vahid N, Hossine N, Habib SS. Antidiabetic effect of Equisetum arvense L. (Equisetaceae) in streptozotocin-induced diabetes in male rats. Pak J Biol Sci. 2007;10(10):1661-1666. doi:10.3923/pjbs.2007.1661.1666


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