Your intestines -- including both your small and large intestines -- are the portion of your digestive tract that runs from your stomach's pyloric sphincter to your anus. The inside portion of your intestinal walls is lined with mucous membranes and is a common site of intestinal problems. FamilyDoctor.org states that several conditions may affect your intestinal lining, including Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Ask your physician about nutritional supplements before using these substances to heal your intestinal lining.
Inflammatory bowel diseases are among the most common health problems that affect your intestinal lining. The National Health Service of the United Kingdom states that inflammatory bowel disease is a general term used to describe a group of conditions that may cause similar symptoms, including abdominal pain or discomfort, changes in your bowel habits, extreme fatigue and unexpected weight loss. The symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease tend to be intermittent, flaring up periodically.
Many nutritional supplements may help heal your intestinal lining and treat your inflammatory bowel disease. Naturopathic physician Joseph E. Pizzorno Jr., author of "The Clinician's Handbook of Natural Medicine," states that the following nutrients may help treat your condition: zinc; magnesium; iron; calcium; potassium; vitamins A, B-12, D, E and K; folic acid; ascorbic acid; and quercetin. The herbs marshmallow root, wild indigo, purple coneflower, geranium, goldenseal, poke root, comfrey and slippery elm may also be helpful in treating your inflammatory bowel disease-related symptoms. Some of these supplements may require further study to determine their efficacy.
A Commonly Used Supplement
Marshmallow root is a commonly used supplement in healing your intestinal lining. According to Ed Smith, an herbalist and author of "Therapeutic Herb Manual," marshmallow root is often used in treating inflammation and irritation in your gastrointestinal tract and stomach ulcers. Certain constituents in the root of the marshmallow plant help soothe irritated mucous membranes in your intestines, respiratory tract and other structures throughout your body. Marshmallow root contains a significant amount of mucilage.
Damage to your intestinal lining may cause numerous symptoms and should always be evaluated by a health care professional, who can order various tests that may provide an accurate diagnosis of your condition. Your doctor also can counsel you on the most appropriate and effective methods of care. Always discuss the risks and benefits of dietary supplements with your doctor as well as appropriate dosage and possible drug interactions and side effects before using supplements to help heal your intestinal lining.
- FamilyDoctor.org: Digestive Disorders
- National Health Service: Understanding Inflammatory Bowel Disease
- "The Clinician's Handbook of Natural Medicine"; Joseph E. Pizzorno, Jr., N.D.; 2002
- "Therapeutic Herb Manual"; Ed Smith; 2007