Organic Marshmallow Root Benefits
Marshmallow root is a flowering herb also known as Althaea officinalis. The roots, leaves, and flowers have traditionally been used medicinally in many countries worldwide. It is thought that it may have several health benefits due to containing polysaccharide mucilage properties.
Mucilage is a gel-type substance that may help soothe dry, irritated skin or inflamed mucous membranes. It can be taken as a capsule, tincture, tea, or cough syrup and is also used in some skin products.
Potential Health Benefits of Marshmallow Root
May help coughs and colds
Due to the high mucilaginous (sticky gel-like) content, marshmallow root is thought to loosen mucous, inhibit bacteria, and soothe dry coughs and an irritated throat. In a small study where patients took a syrup made of dry ivy leaf extract, thyme and aniseed, and mucilage of marshmallow root, researchers found that it helped alleviate cough symptoms caused by the common cold, bronchitis, or respiratory tract infections.
May help skin irritation, chapped skin, and skin health
Marshmallow root is thought to have anti-inflammatory properties as well, that may help relieve skin irritation caused by skin conditions such as eczema and dermatitis. A study using a topical ointment with 20% marshmallow root suggests that it could help soothe and repair skin damage caused by eczema and UV radiation.
It has also been suggested that it can be used topically to help soothe sore, cracked nipples and breast pain. Research discusses the potential benefits of using marshmallow root extract in UV skincare products to help enhance the appearance of skin exposed to the sun.
May support wound healing
Studies on animals showed that applying marshmallow extract significantly increased wound healing when compared to control groups. It is thought to have antibacterial properties that may effectively reduce wound healing time and minimize irritation.
May support the digestive system
Research suggests that marshmallow root could be beneficial in helping with digestive conditions such as stomach ulcers and gastric reflux. The sticky mucilage properties are believed to help coat the gastrointestinal tract lining to soothe and protect the membranes from irritation.
May support heart health
The anti-inflammatory properties of marshmallow root are thought to help lower the risk of heart disease. Animal studies have shown that taking the flower extract of marshmallow root for one month helped increase good cholesterol levels supporting heart health.
How to Take Marshmallow Root
There are several ways you can take or use marshmallow root to benefit from its mucilage properties. You can find marshmallow root in the following forms:
- Marshmallow root tea
- Marshmallow powder (which can be mixed into liquids to make a drink)
- Marshmallow root skin products which can be applied topically
- Marshmallow root supplement capsules
- Cough syrups containing marshmallow root
Marshmallow root has been used for its healing properties for hundreds of years. It is generally well-tolerated; however, some medications can interact with marshmallow root. Therefore, you should always consult your family doctor before taking or using products containing marshmallow root.