What is Tragacanth Plant Used For?

Tragacanth is a natural gum obtained from the Astralagus plant. Orally, Tragacanth is used as a laxative as well as for treating diarrhea. Topically, Tragacanth is used as an ingredient in hand lotions, toothpaste, vaginal cream, and jellies. In food, Tragacanth is used to thicken, stabilize, and suspend ingredients in salad dressings, beverages, and other foods. Tragacanth is also used in pharmaceutical preparations as an emulsifier, demulcent, and binding agent. Many dental adhesives also use Tragacanth.

Also known as:  Adragante, Astragale Adragant, Astragale de Marseille, Coussin-de-Belle-Mère, Goat’s Thorn, Gomme Adragante, Gomme de Dragon, Green Dragon, Gum Dragon, Gum Tragacanth, Gummi Tragacanthae, Hog Gum, Syrian Tragacanth, Tragacanth Gum, Tragacanthe, Tragacanto

Diseases and Conditions

There is insufficient information on the effectiveness of Tragacanth.


Tragacanth is likely safe when used orally in food amounts. Tragacanth has acheived a Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) status in the United States when used topically in amounts usually found in cosmetics. Tragacanth is not considered to be sensitizing, irritating, or phototoxic. It is possibly safe to use Tragacanth orally in sufficient amounts with adequate fluid intake otherwise this can lead to esophageal closure. There is insufficient information on the safety of Tragacanth for pregnant and breastfeeding women; best to avoid in amounts more than what is usually found in food. Tragacanth may cause asthma in people who are sensitive to quillaia bark.

Medication Interactions

Tragacanth has been reported to interact with oral drugs. Due to its thick gel-like consistency, Tragacanth has a tendency to stick to medications in the stomach and intestines. This can decrease how much medication your body absorbes, thereby decreasing the medication’s effectiveness. To prevent this interaction, take Tragacanth at least one hour after medications you take by mouth.

Supplement and Food Interactions

There are no known supplement and food interactions associated with Tragacanth.


There is no typical dosage known for Tragacanth.


Tragacanth has not been reported to be found in any foods.


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