Introducing mastic gum, the ancient Greek digestive remedy that’s making a comeback.
Previously little known in Australia, the ancient Greek remedy mastic gum is undergoing a resurgence, especially amongst those keen to support their gut health. Read on to learn more about the properties and uses of this traditional natural medicine.
Where does mastic gum come from?
Mastic gum is produced from the aromatic resin of the mastic tree, a small, evergreen shrub native to the Mediterranean region.
The medicinal gum is only produced from mastic trees grown on the Greek island of Chios, where farmers have been cultivating them for this purpose for centuries.
What is mastic gum used for?
It is widely used in cooking in Greece and neighbouring countries, where it’s a common ingredient in chewing gum, drinks, savoury dishes and sweets.
It has also been used medicinally since the time of Hippocrates, nearly 2500 years ago.
In traditional Greek herbal medicine, mastic gum is used to support the health of the mucous membranes that line the gastrointestinal system from the mouth to the gut, and to soothe them when they’re irritated or mildly inflamed.
It’s also traditionally used in Greek herbal medicine to relieve the symptoms of indigestion (dyspepsia).
How should I take mastic gum?
Mastic gum is easy to take in a powdered form, and thanks to its mild flavour, can be mixed into smoothies or juice and slotted into your existing daily routine.
It’s suitable for use alongside herbs that have similar therapeutic properties, like slippery elm and marshmallow root, which are traditionally used in Western herbal medicine to calm mild gastrointestinal inflammation, support and protect digestive mucous membranes, and relieve symptoms of mild gastritis.
Also consider the amino acid glutamine, which provides further support for the structural integrity of the gastrointestinal mucous membrane cells and provides them with the energy they need to function.
Glutamine also supports immune health (including gastrointestinal immunity).
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