Seabuckthorn has been referenced a long way back in history and there was a wonderful Greek legend about seabuckthorn and horses! The legend says that horses that had been wounded in battle were released by their keepers into the wild to die a natural death (practically unimaginable nowadays!). Horses released into seabuckthorn forests are said to have returned to their keepers from the forests with a beautiful shine to their skin and in perfect health – for having eaten an abundance of seakbuckthorn berries! The Greeks actually called the plant Hippophae Rhamnoides, which translates as “tree that makes horses shine”.
So what about Seabucthorn makes it so great, not just the skin and coat but for general health and wellbeing? Well, it contains the elusive and hard to come across Omega 7 fatty acid, found in very few plants. Furthermore, it also contains the other lovely omegas you hear about more regularly – 3, 6 and 9.
But there’s more…Seabuckthorn boasts a very impressive profile of nutrients including polyphenols (which give plants their bright, vibrant colours), antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and amino acids. It’s fair to say that Seabuckthorn packs an incredible nutritional punch!
What benefits does it have for horses though? Seabuckthorn is excellent for horses with problematic guts, who suffer from poor nutrient absorption, have low or compromised immunity, exhibit signs of stress, have allergies and irritations and who lack vitality. And as the Greeks saw for themselves, it results in a healthy, glowing, shiny coat.
Seabuckthorn is a berry that grows on a shrub-like tree. The berries are round and orange – red in colour and the plant thrives in coastal areas. You can find Seabuckthorn growing in Europe, Australia, parts of Asia and the Americas.
When purchasing Seabuckthorn for horses, it is available as a liquid supplement. This normally comprises the pulp, seed and juice of the berries. It’s important to ensure that when purchasing you’re not buying a diluted product but pure Seabuckthorn – this will ensure that your horse gets the true benefit of this remarkable super fruit.
We’re planning for Seabuckthorn to be an important addition to our product range this year as it’s benefits for gut health are in line with our philosophy of a preventative, gut centred approach to equine feeding and nutrition. You can learn more about our current range of products here
Do you feed Seabuckthorn? Tell us about how it’s helped your horse in the comments below!