Slippery Elm (Ulmus fulva)


Slippery Elm Overview:

Slippery elm is one of the oldest herbal medicines known and was consumed as a food in the past. The nutritious, powdered bark is useful for treating states of convalescence, especially in those unable to eat solid food.

Medicinally, slippery elm is used to treat inflammatory conditions of the gastrointestinal tract, and can be used as a poultice to treat wounds and irritation.


  • Boils
  • Burns Topically
  • Celiac Disease
  • Constipation
  • Crohn's disease
  • Duodenal Ulcers
  • Hemmorhoids
  • Peptic ulcers
  • Ulcerative colitis


May reduce the absorption of other herbs, nutrients, and medications.

Herbal Actions:

  • Demulcent
  • Emollient
  • Nutritive
  • Expectorant
  • Astringent
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antitussive

Main Uses:

Slippery elm is mainly used for its demulcent and emolient activities to soothe the digestive, respiratory, and integumentary tissues. Internally slippery elm is made into a thick paste, or taken as capsules for conditions including colitis, peptic and duodenal ulcers, diarrhea, gastritis, IBD, and any condition involving inflammation in the digestive tract.

Topically, slippery elm is used to treat inflammed or irritated skin, burns, boils and abscesses, or wounds. The soothing and nutritive nature of the powdered bark improves mucosa repair, and offers mild disinfectant activities to keep the wound clean in the process.


Daily Dosage

Dried Extract

Ratio: 1:1

5-20 g

Weekly Dosage

Dried Extract

Ratio: 1:1

35-140 g


Part Used

Inner bark

Family Name



North America along the Eastern coast.

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Constituents of Interest

  • Mucilage

Common Names

  • Slippery elm
  • Red elm
  • Gray elm
  • Soft elm
  • Moose elm
  • Indian elm
  • Sweet elm
  • Winged elm

Botanical Info:

Slippery elm is a member of the Ulmaceae family of plants, also known as the Elm family, which all have characteristically mucilaginous bark and leaves. This family contains only 7 genera and about 45 different species.


Research Overview:

Level Of Research:


Clinical Applications Of Slippery Elm:

The high mucilage in slippery elm makes it useful for treating inflammatory conditions of the skin, gastrointestinal tract, and respiratory tract. It has mild antibacterial and antifungal actions, and has significant vulnerary actions on the mucosal layer of the GIT.

The high vitamin and mineral content make it useful for conditions like anorexia and convalescence.

Topically, slippery elm is useful as a poultice for inflammed and damaged skin, and is useful for treating allergic reactions on the skin.



Slippery elm may reduce the absorbtion of other herbs or medications. Take away from all other supplements by at leas an hour before or after.


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