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Marshmallow (Althaea officinalis)

Marshmallow (Althaea officinalis)

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

About

Marshmallow is a plant. The leaves and the root are used to make medicine. Don't confuse marshmallow with the mallow (Malva sylvestris) flower and leaf.

Marshmallow leaf and root are used for pain and swelling (inflammation) of the mucous membranes that line the respiratory tract. They are also used for dry cough, inflammation of the lining of the stomach, diarrhea, stomach ulcers, constipation, urinary tract inflammation, and stones in the urinary tract.

People sometimes apply marshmallow leaf and root directly to the skin for pockets of infection (abscesses) and skin ulcers; and as a poultice for skin inflammation or burns, and for other wounds.

Marshmallow leaf is used topically as a poultice for insect bites.

Marshmallow root is applied to the skin as an ingredient in ointments for chapped skin as well as for pain and swelling of the feet and hands due to exposure to the cold (chilblains).

In foods, marshmallow leaf and root are used as a flavoring agent.

How does it work?

Marshmallow forms a protective layer on the skin and lining of the digestive tract. It also contains chemicals that might decrease cough and help heal wounds.

Traditionally used for

Cough caused by ACE inhibitors.
Skin infection caused by parasites (Leishmania lesions).
Sores.
Skin inflammation.
Burns.
Wounds.
Insect bites.
Chapped skin.
Diarrhea.
Constipation.
Stomach and intestinal ulcers.
Irritation of the mouth and throat.
Dry cough.

Dosage

The appropriate dose of marshmallow for use as treatment depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for marshmallow. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

Possible Side Effects

Marshmallow is SAFE for most people when taken by mouth. In some people, it might cause low blood sugar levels.

Marshmallow is SAFE when applied directly to the skin.

Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of marshmallow during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Diabetes: There is a concern that marshmallow might interfere with blood sugar control. If you have diabetes, check your blood sugar carefully to avoid dangerously low blood sugar.

Surgery: Marshmallow might affect blood sugar levels. There is a concern that it could interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgical procedures. Stop taking marshmallow at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

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