Herbs that can be used as a Demulcent

What are Demulcents?

Demulcent substances ease and safeguard irritated or inflamed mucous membranes within the body. These components function by creating a protective coating over the mucous membranes. This coating offers a soothing and defensive layer, commonly utilized to relieve irritation in the throat, digestive tract, and respiratory system. 

This coating not only soothes irritation but also shields the mucous membranes from further damage or irritation. These demulcent substances can be found in marshmallow root, slippery elm, honey, and specific kinds of cough syrups or lozenges.

What are the benefits of Demulcent?

Demulcents can help with:

  • Sore throat
  • Cough
  • Gastric irritation
  • Respiratory irritation
  • Acid reflux
  • Heartburn
  • Gastritis

3 Herbs Recommended as a Demulcent

Marshmallow Root

Marshmallow Root

Marshmallow root is one of the best demulcents due to its mucilage content. This mucilage is a thick, gluey substance that gives marshmallow root its soothing properties. When mixed with water, it forms a gel-like coating that can protect and soothe irritated mucous membranes in various parts of the body.

Marshmallow root is primarily used to soothe irritation of the throat. It is frequently used in teas, syrups, or lozenges to relieve dry coughs, sore throats, and other discomforts associated with the throat. Its soothing qualities help to relax irritated tissues and may even speed up the healing process by forming a protective layer over them.

Use Marshmallow Root Tincture up to three times daily for the long-lasting formation of the protective layer. 


Slippery Elm Bark

Slippery Elm Bark

Slippery elm is a natural remedy known for its demulcent properties, much like marshmallow root. What makes it effective is its inner bark, which contains a substance called mucilage. When mixed with water, this mucilage forms a slippery, gel-like substance.

This gooey material coats the irritated or inflamed areas in the body, particularly in the throat and digestive system. When you consume slippery elm in the form of teas, lozenges, or other preparations, this coating action helps soothe the discomfort caused by sore throats, dry coughs, or even digestive issues like gastritis or heartburn.

By forming this protective layer, slippery elm provides a barrier that can reduce irritation and potentially support the healing process. It's like a natural shield that eases discomfort and allows the affected areas to recover more comfortably.

Flax Seeds

Flax Seeds

Flax seeds are a natural source of demulcent properties due to their high mucilage content. Mucilage is a gel-forming fiber that expands when combined with water, creating a slippery, gel-like substance.

When consumed, flax seeds can form this soothing gel, providing a coating for irritated tissues in the throat and digestive tract. This coating action helps to alleviate discomfort associated with sore throats, dry coughs, and mild digestive issues like gastritis or irritation in the stomach lining.

By creating a protective layer, flax seeds offer relief by calming and easing irritation in these sensitive areas, allowing them to heal more comfortably. You can consume flax seeds by soaking them in water or adding them to foods like oatmeal or yogurt to benefit from their demulcent properties.

Other Medicinal Plants that act as a demulcent