Maranta arundinacea

Botanical Name : Maranta arundinacea
Family: Marantaceae
Genus: Maranta
Species: M. arundinacea
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Zingiberales

Common Names:Arrowroot,  Arrowroot maranta West Indian arrowroot, obedience plant, Bermuda arrowroot, araru, ararao or hulankeeriya

Habitat : Maranta arundinacea is native to South America, the Caribbean, and Mexico.

The plant is naturalized in Florida, but it is chiefly cultivated in the West Indies (especially Jamaica and St. Vincent), Australia, Southeast Asia, and South and East Africa.

Description:
A perennial plant growing to about 2 feet (0.61 m) tall, arrowroot has small white flowers and fruits approximately the size and shape of currants. The rootstocks are dug when the plant is one year old, and often exceed 1 foot (30 cm) in length and 0.75 inches (19 mm) in diameter. They are yellowish white, jointed and covered with loose scales

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Medicinal Uses:
Arrowroot powder is added to foods to help stop diarrhea, help soothe irritable bowel syndrome, and is considered a nutritious and easily digested food starch for infants and elderly patients with bowel complaints. Arrowroot is also used in bath and body care recipes, like these bath salts.

Hospitals formerly employed arrow root in barium meals given prior to X-raying the gastro-intestinal system.  When mixed with hot water, the root starch of this plant becomes gelatinous and serves as an effective demulcent to soothe irritated mucous membranes.  Used in much the same way as slippery elm.  It helps to relieve acidity, indigestion, and colic, and it exerts a mildly laxative action on the large bowel.

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Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maranta_arundinacea
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail485.php

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm

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