Arrowroot (Maranta arundinaceae) is a South American plant harvested for its tuberous root, which contains a high degree of starch. Its name comes from the use of the herb by the by the Arawak people to draw out toxins inflicted by poison arrows. Also known as Obedience Plant, arrowroot is a traditional remedy for diarrhea and other gastrointestinal disorders.
At one time, the dried and powered root was used in papermaking. Today, arrowroot powder (also called arrowroot starch) is most commonly used as a thickener for pie fillings, jellies, puddings, sauces, stews and other foods just like cornstarch, but has the benefit of thickening foods at lower temperatures.
There are many more uses for arrowroot powder that you might not be aware of. In fact, it’s great for hair and skin! Here’s a few suggestions:
Use in place of cornstarch or flour to make your recipes free of gluten and GMO ingredients.
Apply a paste of arrowroot powder to insect bites and stings to draw out toxins.
Combine with powdered lavender flowers, sage or other herbs to make body powders.
Use plain as a healing baby powder.
Use as a shoe and foot powder to absorb moisture and dispel odor. Great for athlete’s foot!
Add to your skin and body care formulas as a thickening and agent.