What Is Slippery Elm Bark is a tree native to the central and eastern United States and Ontario, Canada.
The tree is known for its dark brown to reddish brown bark and can reach a height of 60-80 feet. Native Americans would peel its slimy, red inner bark from twigs and branches and use it as a remedy for many common ailments, like fevers, wounds, and sore throats.
They found that when the bark is mixed with water, it generates a sticky material known as mucilage, which is therapeutic and soothing to anything it touches. The Native Americans would also wrap the inner bark of the slippery elm around their meat to keep the meat from going bad.
Slippery elm bark was later picked up by American soldiers to heal gunshot wounds during the American Revolution.
Slippery elm bark is a demulcent. This means that it is capable of soothing the lining of the stomach and intestines and reducing irritation. Demulcents are sometimes referred to as mucoprotective agents.
Recent studies have shown that slippery elm bark can help treat the symptoms associated with inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome