Marshmallow soothes and heals skin, mucous membranes, and other tissues, externally and internally.
(Althea officinalis) Parts used: Root, flowers, and leaves.
Properties: Demulcent, diuretic, emollient, lithotriptic, alterative, nutritive, and vulnerary.
What it affects: Intestines, kidneys, and bladder.
Preparation and amount: Infusion (flowers and leaves): Steep 5-15 minutes. Take 1 cup at a time, frequently. Decoction (root): Simmer 5-15 minutes. Take 6 oz. 3 times daily. Tincture: 30-60 drops (1/2 – 1 tsp.) 3 times daily. Fluid extract: Take 1-2 tsp. 3 times daily. Powder: Take 5-10 #0 capsules (30-60 grains) 3 times daily.
Purposes: Marshmallow soothes and heals skin, mucous membranes, and other tissues, externally and internally. Internally, it is the best source of easily digested mucilage. It helps the body lubricate joints, to protect them against dryness and irritation. Because digestive fluids contain mucilage, marshmallow also acts as a counter-irritant to the digestive tract and aids in diarrhea, dysentery, and ulcers. It is also used for lung problems and as a douche in vaginal infections. It is good for bladder infections.
Use marshmallow with other laxative herbs for chronic constipation that is associated with dryness or lack of roughage. In combination with other diuretic herbs, such as parsley root, use it as tea for kidney stone attack and to help expel gravel. It is also used for headache, sinusitis, sore throat, asthma, and allergies. Marshmallow is often used as 10% of the formula in various herbal mixtures.
Externally, as a poultice, marshmallow can be applied with a pinch of cayenne on a daily basis in order to treat open wounds, burns, gangrene, septic wounds, bruises, and blood poisoning. The tea is good to bathe sore eyes.
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