With over 190 bioactive substances, including essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, flavonoids, and phytosterols, it’s pretty clear that Sea Buckthorn is great for human health. But did you know that it’s also great for the health of our animal friends?
According to legend, Sea Buckthorn leaves were the preferred food of the mythical winged horse Pegasus. But it’s not just mythical animals who can benefit from the fruit, leaves, and bark of the Sea Buckthorn plant. Use of Sea Buckthorn to improve the health of animals, particularly horses, has a long history. In ancient Greece, Sea Buckthorn leaves and young branches were fed to racehorses to improve stamina and impart a shiny coat. In fact, the Latin name for Sea Buckthorn is Hippophae rhamnoides – Hippophae actually means “shining horse”. And today, modern research supports the use of Sea Buckthorn to treat gastrointestinal problems in horses.
Gastrointestinal ulcers are a particular problem for horses. When stressed, such as while traveling, horses are at greater risk to develop gastrointestinal ulcers. In fact, in a November 1, 2008 article in www.thehorse.com, entitled Update on Ulcers, it was reported that it only takes a horse three days to develop an ulcer while in a stressed state. According to this report, when researchers administered 3 ounces of Sea Buckthorn berry extract, there was a decrease in the number and severity of glandular ulcers, with an overall lower occurrence of ulcer sources.
And Sea Buckthorn may also be of benefit to other animals, such as dogs and cats—particularly those with skin ailments or gastrointestinal problems—since the essential fatty acids in Sea Buckthorn help to regenerate cells and soothe skin and mucous membranes, including those in the gastrointestinal track. Our dogs particularly love the treats we make with our Sea Buckthorn—but of course, you should consult with your veterinarian before including anything new into your pet’s diet.