Althea officinalis Common name: Marshmallow
Parts used: Leaves & root
Constituents: Root: mucilage polysaccharides (18-35%), pectin, asparagine (2%), tannins, flavonoids, coumarins, calcium oxalates
Medicinal actions: Demulcent, emollient, vulnerary, expectorant, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-tussive, alterative, nutritive, mild laxative, diuretic, anti-lithic.
Medicinal use: Demulcent to the gastrointestinal system, the respiratory system and the urinary system. Can be used in gastritis, peptic ulcer, interstitial cystitis, lower UTI symptom relief, pharyngitis & dry cough.
- Polysaccharides in root are hypoglycemic, anti-tussive, anti-microbial, soothing & protective to mucous membranes (mouth, throat, GIT, and by reflex action the urinary and respiratory tract). Also stimulate phagocytosis and have anti-inflammatory and immunomodulating effects.
Pharmacy: Infusion: 2-4 g/cup cold water (avoid boiling), infuse overnight; 1 cup TID. Tincture: (1:5, 25%), 1-4 ml TID. Dried herb: 2-5g QD. Gargle, Poultice, Syrup.
Toxicity: A very safe herb.
Interactions: None known. Theoretically may delay the absorption of oral drugs if taken simultaneously.