According to Ayurveda, the health of the intestinal wall was tended to with great care in innumerable ways. Today, there are many scientific studies confirming how these Ayurvedic therapies actually support a healthy microbiome as well as optimal digestive and overall health.*
Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula is my favorite such therapy that I have been using successfully in my practice for almost thirty years. This is a concentrated proprietary blend of tea made out of chopped (not ground) slippery elm bark, marshmallow root and licorice root.
High Potency Decoction: Soak 3 tablespoons in 2 quarts of water overnight. In a large saucepan, boil the mixture down to 1/2 quart in the morning. Strain the formula through a sieve or metal strainer, using a large spoon to push as much of the decoction through the strainer as possible. Save the liquid and discard the herbs. Take 1 tablespoon of the liquid every two hours on an empty stomach, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.
Tea for Maintenance: Steep up to 1 tablespoon Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula in 8 ounces boiling water for 5 – 20 minutes. Strain and drink one cup per day or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.
Bottle Contains: About 16 servings, 3 tablespoons each
Ingredients: Organic Ulmus rubra (Slippery Elm Bark), Organic Althaea officinalis (Marshmallow Root), Organic Glycyrrhiza glabra (Licorice Root)
Does not contain: Yeast, gluten, corn, soy, milk, fish, animal products, binders, fillers, preservatives, or artificial sweeteners, or colors
Kosher Certified: No animal derivatives
For Best Results:
For occasional constipation, use it with the Elim 1 herbal formula. Wean off the Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula first and then the Elim 1.
For loose stools, take the Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula along with Elim 2. Wean off the Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula first and then the Elim 2.
For mucus in the stool, take the Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula with Amalaki to help re-establish a healthy intestinal lining.
For occasional heartburn, take the Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula with Cool Digest before a meal.
To best restore a healthy microbiome, take the Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula with our Gut Revival Probiotic and Intestinal Restore.
Once finished with the Slippery Elm Prebiotic Formula, follow up with our colonizing probiotic, Flora Restore.
Licorice Root (Glycyrrhiza glabra) is a classic Ayurvedic herb used worldwide as a natural lubricant for the intestinal and respiratory airways. Licorice naturally lubricates and soothes mucous membranes and, as an adaptogen, it protects them from stress, environmental irritants and pollens.
Licorice also quells the production of reactive mucus and supports the function of other herbs when taking in combination. (6
Licorice is calming for vata, cooling for pitta, and can liquefy the mucus of kapha.
Slippery Elm Bark
Slippery Elm Bark (Ulmus rubra) has long been used for digestive and intestinal concerns because of its lubricating and gut-protective properties. (8)
Along with its mucilaginous, protective properties for the intestinal wall, it has been shown to support healthy antioxidant activity in the intestinal tract. (7)
Like licorice, it has a sweet taste and cooling action. It balances vata and pitta in the same way licorice does, but it will increase kapha as a result of its more mucilaginous properties.
A thick layer of protective mucilaginous herb that covers the entire intestinal tract is the key to its success.
Marshmallow Root (Althaea officinalis) is perhaps the most demulcent of the three herbs in this formula. It has been studied to protect the stomach lining from excess acid and protect the intestinal tract from intestinal irritants, such as the toxic form of carrageenan. (9)
Medicinally, it has been approved by the German Commission E in supporting inflammation of the gastric mucosa, and for irritation of the oral and pharyngeal mucosa. (9)
Like both licorice and slippery elm, marshmallow is an insoluble fiber, which means it will not be broken down as it passes through the stomach and small intestine. This allows it to offer the gut, where most of the microbes reside, a handsome feast of the fibers and nutrients these three herbs contain.
Marshmallow is cooling for pitta, soothing and calming for vata and, as it is mucus producing, it will increase kapha–a good thing in this case–as we are trying to coat and protect the intestines from top to bottom over the course of a month of therapy.
Ayurvedic Herbal Makeup