If you’ve been keeping up with health trends, you’ve probably heard all about arrowroot. This powder is made from the root of the arrowroot plant, or Maranta arundinacea. Sometimes, arrowroot powder is referred to as a flour.
Arrowroot powder is used in the same way as cornstarch. However, unlike conventional grain flours, arrowroot is gluten-free. It’s also much easier to digest and has a very fine consistency. Here’s how arrowroot can be beneficial to your health, your skin, and hair!
1. Has No Gluten
If you’re allergic to gluten or are suffering from celiac disease, arrowroot is your best friend! Arrowroot can be used as a substitute for wheat flour. You can use arrowroot as a healthy frying batter, instead of white flour. In cooking and baking processes, arrowroot powder is also commonly used as a thickening agent. For example, you can make a gluten-free roux (white sauce) with arrowroot. Puddings, gravies, and chocolate sauces can also be thickened with this powder.1
2. Absorbs Sweat
Arrowroot is a popular ingredient in cosmetic body powder. It can absorb moisture without drying out your skin, making it perfect for hot and sweaty days. You can even mix it with essential oils to make a lovely scented powder. Unlike commercial powders, arrowroot powder won’t leave your skin feeling dry or chalky.2
3. Makes Hair Less Greasy
Do you suffer from an oily scalp? Consider learning how to use arrowroot powder on the hair. It works as a natural alternative to commercial dry shampoo powder, which can be pretty expensive.
- Mix a few drops of essential oil to a cup of arrowroot powder.
- Apply the mixture to the roots of your hair.
- Next, brush out the powder from the hair.
Arrowroot, when used as a dry shampoo, can leave the hair soft and clean and remove excess moisture from the hair.
4. Treats Athlete’s Foot
Since arrowroot reduces the skin’s moisture, it can be used for athlete’s foot. This condition, after all, is caused by excess moisture on the feet. But since it doesn’t have antifungal properties, you’ll need to add a few drops of tea tree oil to kill the infection.3
5. Treats Diarrhea
Thanks to its demulcent (soothing) effects, arrowroot has commonly been used in the treatment of diarrhea. It reduces inflammation and eases abdominal pain caused by diarrhea. It is reported that in people with irritable bowel syndrome, arrowroot reduces diarrhea by bulking up the stool.4 5
6. Can Reverse Iodine Poisoning
Arrowroot has been extensively used in traditional Indian medicine as an antidote to poison. Arrowroot is known to treat iodine poisoning by chemically converting the poisonous iodine to a harmless iodine salt. Although there has not been any substantial research on how arrowroot can reverse the effects of poison, it is believed that it acts as an antidote.6 7
7. Boosts Immunity
The extract of arrowroot boosts immunity and prevent you from falling prey to diseases. The extract increases the production of immune system cells, thus giving arrowroot its immunostimulatory properties.8
If you’re suffering from diarrhea or athlete’s foot, make the switch from wheat flour to arrowroot powder. You can also double the arrowroot powder as a beauty product by using it as a face powder or dry shampoo!
|↑1||Humphrey, Elizabeth King, Jeanette Hurt. Gluten-Free Eating. Penguin, 2014.|
|↑2||Atkinson, Alicia. Essential Oils for Beauty, Wellness, and the Home: 100 Natural, Non-toxic Recipes for the Beginner and Beyond. Skyhorse Publishing, Inc., 2015.|
|↑3||Misner, Bill D. “A novel aromatic oil compound inhibits microbial overgrowth on feet: a case study.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 4, no. 1 (2007): 3.|
|↑4||COOKE, Caroline, Irene CARR, Keith ABRAMS, and John MAYBERRY. “Arrowroot as a treatment for diarrhoea in irritable bowel syndrome patients: a pilot study.” Arquivos de gastroenterologia 37, no. 1 (2000): 20-24.|
|↑5||Ulbricht, Catherine E. Natural Standard Herb & Supplement Guide: An Evidence-Based Reference. Elsevier Health Sciences, 2016.|
|↑6||Shepherd, Dorothy. Homoeopathy For The First Aider. Random House, 2011.|
|↑7||Ulbricht, Catherine E. Natural Standard Herb & Supplement Guide: An Evidence-Based Reference. Elsevier Health Sciences, 2016.|
|↑8||Kumalasari, Ika Dyah, Eni Harmayani, Lily Arsanti Lestari, Sri Raharjo, Widya Asmara, Kosuke Nishi, and Takuya Sugahara. “Evaluation of immunostimulatory effect of the arrowroot (Maranta arundinacea. L) in vitro and in vivo.” Cytotechnology 64, no. 2 (2012): 131-137.|