If you’ve been following Sporthorse Apothecary for a while, you’ve probably heard us mention that we use “sustainably sourced ingredients” whenever possible in our formulas.
But what does that mean, exactly?
In short, it means we care about where our ingredients come from, and how these ingredients impact our beautiful planet and all the creatures that live here.
As often as possible, we choose all-natural ingredients that are harvested or grown in such a way that they are sustainable for the long-term. In this way, we’re helping to preserve many of the beautiful, all-natural ingredients that help us make our herbal remedies for horses.
Here’s a closer look at three of these sustainably sourced ingredients we’re using right now…
Sustainably Sourced Kelp, that Respects Our Oceans
Kelp for horses is anti-inflammatory, demulcent, emollient, protective against radiation, anti-cancer, anti-tumor, antibiotic, immuno-stimulant, antiviral and soothing to the intestinal mucosa.
Kelp is also an integral part of the ocean’s ecosystem and sourcing it responsibly is an important act of sustainability.
That’s why we only use sustainably-sourced kelp to make our SPA Gut Tonic. Our raw, nutrient-dense kelp comes from ecologically sound kelp beds where holistic gatherers are committed to protecting the health of these coastal ecologies.
The harvest of kelp is guided by the lunar cycle, occurring at all hours of day and night as determined by the tides. Our harvesters travel in small boats to protect the kelp beds, working quickly during the brief windows of time when access is permitted by the receding tide.
Working carefully within this turbulent environment, our harvesters selectively cut each variety with specific techniques developed to ensure the long-term health of this unique ecosystem. Once brought to land, the seaweed is immediately hung to dry, reaching a shelf-stable condition within 24-36 hours, at which point it stores indefinitely.
Some of the oldest and most resilient organisms on earth, seaweeds have been noted throughout history for their tremendous nutritional and medicinal benefits. These “plants” have evolved in one of the most turbulent ecosystems on the planet and can lend some of their strength and tenacity to our horses’ bodies during times of stress and transition.
Wildcrafted Nettle, That Preserves the Plant
Let’s switch gears for a moment from the oceanside kelp beds to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. That’s where you’ll find the wild plant, Stinging Nettle, that we use in many of our Sporthorse Apothecary formulas.
Stinging Nettle is a natural antihistamine that can help rid your horse’s body of uric acid which is associated with inflammation, as well as balance sugars in his blood. It also acts as a general provider of minerals like calcium, iron, potassium and Vitamin C – itself a powerful antioxidant that helps to mop up free radicals that may be released from the fat cells of horses in athletic conditioning. Those are just a few reasons why we use Stinging Nettle in our Gut Tonic.
We only use sustainably sourced Nettle for our SPA formulas, that has been wildcrafted.
When we say “wildcrafted,” that means this Stinging Nettle is cultivated by natural means on unpolluted land.
Our Nettle comes from a wild crop in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. When it’s time to harvest the Nettle, our gatherers follow strict guidelines that ensure the conservation of the private acreage that has been approved for collecting this crop. These specific harvesting practices ensure the regeneration and longevity of this wild plant.
In other words, our Stinging Nettle is harvested in a sustainable way, so it preserves this humble and lovely plant for the long-term—even in the wilderness.
Cold Processed Aloe Vera, Without the Additives
Finally, we’re moving from the lush North Carolina mountains to an arid, sunny climate. Equipped with leaves that retain moisture, the aloe vera plant is evolutionarily prepared for dry spells by a shallow root system that can suck up water in the soil.
In fact, much of the soothing effect your horse experiences when you give him Sporthorse Apothecary’s Gut Tonic comes from the benefits of this succulent botanical.
Aloe vera is popular in natural health circles as a digestion aid for its particularly soothing effects. This is due to Aloe being chock full of antioxidants that promote a strong immune system and polysaccharides which have potent anti-inflammatory qualities.
Aloe vera is soothing to the mucosal tissues in the gut, so horses suffering from Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome are in luck. The use of Aloe Vera is very effective to reduce the symptoms from damaged tissues caused by the disease.
That’s why we use Aloe Vera as a prime ingredient in our SPA Gut Tonic.
Specifically, we only use cold-processed aloe vera crystals for our Sporthorse Apothecary formulas. When we say “cold-processed” it means that our aloe vera is produced in a way that preserves the crystals and protects all of their naturally occurring properties in their bio-active forms. It also removes all impurities from the inner-gel, as well as the whole leaf liquid, without any need for damaging additives, filtering processes, or flash pasteurization, making it one of the highest quality Aloe Veras available.
Coming Soon: A New, All-Natural Gut Tonic
Right now, our team is getting ready to introduce a new, extremely potent and all-natural equine digestive system balancer.
This latest addition to our apothecary includes all three of these all-natural, sustainably sourced ingredients—along with new ingredients you won’t find in any of our other formulas.
To learn more, check out our page here.