Malva Sylvestris plant: properties, benefits and uses

Mallow Special: we also discover this new health plant, with all its anti-inflammatory and emollient properties.


Mallow is a perennial plant whose botanical name is Malva sylvestris and is part of the Malvaceae family.

It has been known since ancient times, Hippocrates himself recommended its use for its emollient and laxative properties. The true etymology of its name derives from the Latin “mollire” whose meaning is precisely that of “soften”.

Being edible and very tasty, this plant was also considered “food of the poor”.

Mallow: description of the plant

The plant is small (50-80 cm) and gives abundant summer blooms, very widespread also in gardens as an ornamental plant, both cultivated and spontaneous.

With the arrival of summer, walking in the fields of plains and hills, it is easy to come across its beautiful streaked purple-pink flowers, which stand out from the intense green bushy foliage, covered with a dense, yet harmless, down.

The properties of mallow

 Mallow leaves and flowers are harvested respectively in spring and summer and are used in medicinal medicine for the vitamin complex and the many active ingredients they contain.

  • In addition to mucilage and galacturonic acid, this plant is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B1 and vitamin E. We also find carotene, caffeic, chlorogenic, cumaic acid, potassiumtannins, flavonoids.

The combined action of these substances makes mallow an excellent natural remedy. Let’s find out all its benefits:

  • respiratory disorders: refreshing, expectorant, and anti- inflammatory, it is recommended in case of cough, cold, phlegm, asthma and sore throat. 
  • digestive disorders: useful as a laxative, it fights constipation. Relieves the symptoms of gastritisgastroesophageal reflux and irritable colon. Just drink a mallow-based herbal tea next to meals.  
  • Anti-inflammatory: Mallow is one of the many anti- inflammatory herbs to know. The effective action against the main inflammations is also applicable for gingivitisstomatitis, abscesses, vaginitis and urinary infections.
  • Emollient: soothes various ailments and discomforts related to skin problems, such as eczema, hivesatopic dermatitisstydry skinsunburn. In this case it is used in the form of compresses, after boiling the leaves and stem.

In cosmetics, this plant is used in intimate and body hygiene products, creams, toothpastes, mouthwashes, soaps and moisturizing products.

Does mallow make you lose weight?

Among the many properties of mallow, the draining and purifying ones certainly stand out. This has meant that this plant was often mistakenly considered as an antidote to flab.

Mallow, used alone, without adequate physical activity and without a healthy and balanced diet, does not have magical slimming properties.

If, on the other hand, you decide to set up a serious weight loss program, helped and followed by a health professional, you can certainly combine it as a useful remedy to purify and deflate excess fluids.

Mallow: uses in the kitchen

Fresh flowers and buds of this plant can be used to enrich spring salads. Moreover, the flowers are truly ornamental, so you can also use them simply to decorate risottos and first courses.

The flowers can be salted or pickled, while some like to eat the leaves as if they were a common vegetable. Obviously they will have to be blanched. You can use them as ingredients in soups, risottos and broths.

Mallow decoction

We suggest the decoction of mallow which is excellent in case of colitis, cough, cystitis and constipation:

  1. prepare 1 tablespoon of chopped dried leaves and flowers and boil.
  2. Then leave them to infuse for 10 minutes in a cup, covering with a lid or a cloth.
  3. Filter and drink.

It can also be used cold for external use, to gargle in case of inflammation of the oral cavity and douching for vagienal infections.

Mauve color

The mauve color is a gradation of the purple color and is placed between the lavender and lilac colors. It can be used to paint the walls, giving a romantic and delicate touch, or for curtains and home fabrics.

This is a very restful color that can add a distinctive touch to your interior.

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