Marshmallow Root and Kidney Health: 4 Facts to Know

by Dr. Edward Group DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM Published on , Last Updated on


When it comes to protecting the body, a discussion involving the best ways of keeping the heart, brain, and digestive tract strong is almost always brought up. The urinary tract — which includes the kidneys and bladder — carries a heavy burden when it comes to removing many of the body’s toxins. When the urinary tract is under a great deal of stress, toxins can build up and damage organs. Mallow root, commonly called marshmallow as a reference to the marshes it’s typically grown in, has been used since ancient times to soothe sore throats and soften skin. Here are 4 reasons to use marshmallow root for supporting urinary tract health.

1. May Reduce Irritation and Support Smooth Tissue

In the same way marshmallow soothes sore throats, marshmallow appears to ease swelling in mucus membranes that line the colon and the urinary tract. [1] This swelling of the urinary tract makes tissues more sensitive and prone to damage from passing sediment. It also increases the potential damage from toxins carried by the urine.

2. Increases Urine Flow

Marshmallow possesses diuretic properties which encourage increased urine flow. This helps the body flush the kidneys and bladder, in turn reducing the buildup of minerals and toxins. Natural diuretics may also help reduce water retention, a common bloating issue that affects many people, particularly women.

3. Fights Infection

Recent studies have reported that marshmallow exhibits fighting actions against unfriendly organisms. The studies performed so far have focused on its traditional use in the mouth and throat and its effect on harmful organisms typical to those areas. [2] This makes marshmallow root a potential fighter against bacteria associated with gum disease and strep throat. While studies are warranted on its potential for fighting against a wider range of harmful organisms, its success fighting infection validates its use as a powerful and supportive urinary tract supplement.

4. Encourages Healing Tissue

Medicinal herbs like marshmallow often possess antioxidant properties in addition to the curative properties attributed to tradition. Marshmallow has been identified as having one of the highest levels of glucuronoxylan, a potent antioxidant. [3] Antioxidants like glucuronoxylan protect cells from free radical damage, promoting health along the urinary tract and throughout the entire body.

One Final Thought

Marshmallow provides a wide range of benefits for many areas of the body, not just for the urinary tract. Its potential for combating infection may prove beneficial in future experiments. For occasional bouts with bloating, marshmallow root may also help individuals find relief without having to reach for over-the-counter chemical diuretics. For soothing and promoting urinary tract health, speak with your doctor about this powerful herb.

Have you used marshmallow root? Please share your experiences and let us know how it worked for you.

References (3)
  1. Hage-Sleiman R1, Mroueh M, Daher CF. Pharmacological evaluation of aqueous extract of Althaea officinalis flower grown in Lebanon. Pharm Biol. 2011 Mar;49(3):327-33. doi: 10.3109/13880209.2010.516754.
  2. Iauk L1, Lo Bue AM, Milazzo I, Rapisarda A, Blandino G. Antibacterial activity of medicinal plant extracts against periodontopathic bacteria. Phytother Res. 2003 Jun;17(6):599-604.
  3. Kardosov A1, Machov E. Antioxidant activity of medicinal plant polysaccharides. Fitoterapia. Volume 77, Issue 5, July 2006, Pages 367-373.

†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Global Healing Center does not dispense medical advice, prescribe, or diagnose illness. The views and nutritional advice expressed by Global Healing Center are not intended to be a substitute for conventional medical service. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.

  • beryl A shave

    Hi I am looking up info on Marshmallow capsules because it seems to make me sleepy. Is that possible please.

  • David Hall

    I have been using Marshmallow powder, started at 1/2 tsp and worked up over the week to 3 tsps. I put it in a cup with decaf coffee and a little honey. It has a mild sedative effect as it has Charmative action( may be spelt wrong though saying that it soothes the tissues and the kidney and yes does have a youthful affect on the appearance. I do not like the taste though in the use of herbs over the years I have found that the teas provide a more positive affect with me. The sleepiness will pass as it did with me unless I did not sleep long enough.

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