Slippery Elm – One of the Safest Forms of Fiber
Learn the benefits of Slippery Elm Bark, and how to use it as a safe, natural health remedy.
Slippery elm, scientifically known as Ulmus rubra, is a deciduous tree commonly used for its medicinal value as a coating herbSlippery and protectant. It is also known for its many other uses in various industries which include as a source of timber, a source of fiber for spinning and threading of ropes, mats, clothing and jewelry, and building of canoes. Wow!
Slippery elm is originally found in Eastern North America, mostly in the Appalachian Mountains and also in areas with dry soils. It was initially used by Native Americans in the treatment of wounds and skin inflammations.
During the American Revolution, it was used to treat wounds before it was finally incorporated into modern medicine in the 19th century. Currently, the tree’s inner bark once dried and powered is used in the manufacture of many drugs ranging from lozenges, tablets, and capsules.
The fine and coarse powdered barks and leaves are used in making of teas and soothing drinks or for applying directly to the skin. These medicines are available over-the-counter, especially the lozenges for soothing throat pain which is due to its demulcent action (where it soothes the mucous membranes). This trait is obtained from a soft fiber on its bark known as mucilage. It is also useful for its antitussive action for bronchitis treatment and for its use in preparation of baby food as a source of nutrition and fiber!
Research is underway for its use in the treatment of cancer, irritable bowel syndrome, coughs, colic, diarrhea, constipation, hemorrhoids, and bladder infection among other complications.
It has no additional major side effects except its tendency to coat the stomach lining, causing the reflux stimulation of nerve endings in the gastrointestinal tract and therefore increased mucus secretion which affects absorption and overall effectiveness of other drugs that may be taken during the same period. This blocking effect does, however, reduce harmful chemicals from being absorbed with ingested foods, which is very useful!
The herb is best taken orally, however, if it is applied directly to the skin, it can also soothe skin irritations or allergic reactions. With its multiple medicinal uses, slippery elm is a very useful herb to have in the in your apothecary.
Have you every heard of slippery elm? Have you used it to sooth your cough or for a little fiber when you needed it? Share your storey below,
Jennifer Hutchison Taylor is a herbal therapist, physiologist, author, doula, and reiki practitioner who helps women rediscover their feminine beauty and find the complete path to healing. As the founder of Beauty in Bloom, her mission is to promote generational wellness by providing natural, sustainable, and holistic health solutions for women. Beauty in Bloom exists to create a world where women are happy, healthy, and are taken back to their roots for healing. While herbs are the main tools that she uses, she combines this modality with superfood nutrition, spiritual guidance, and her rich biological sciences background to teach a powerful and revolutionary approach to holistic health.