Don’t Roast this Mallow over a Fire
Marshmallow has been utilized for thousands of years not only as a food during times of famine, but for its healing properties as an herbal remedy. Recently, marshmallow has been used as an expectorant to treat a variety of upper respiratory problems.
Marshmallow contains large amounts of vitamin A, calcium, zinc and significant amounts of iron, sodium, iodine, and B-complex. Like slippery elm, marshmallow reduces inflammation and has a calming effect on the body.
Marshmallow's mucilage content helps soothe inflamed tissues, often caused by bronchitis and asthma. Marshmallow also relieves dryness and irritation in the chest and throat, usually brought on by colds and persistent coughs.
Marshmallow has been known to relieve indigestion, kidney problems, urinary tract infections, and even external skin wounds such as boils and abscesses.
Marshmallow in an herbal form might sound unusual to someone unfamiliar with herbology--but long before the white squishy balls were sitting on supermarket stores, the plant was growing in marshes. The plant is a member of the Mallow family, which prefers for its habitat wet places such as marshes--hence the name. It grows widely around the world, and is found in the western U.S. The modern confection has none of the plant in it, but in times past, the boiled roots were used to make marshmallows. Served as a vegetable, the plant was considered a delicacy among the Romans. In France the young tops and leaves are eaten uncooked in salads. Its high mucilage content makes it an appropriate supplement for the respiratory system.