What is Licorice Root Good For?

Licorice Root

Increase Energy, Reduce Inflammation, and more!

If you didn’t know licorice root was a medicinal herb, you aren't alone. One question we are frequently asked is: "What is licorice root good for?" It turns out it’s effective at helping in quite a few areas. In fact, licorice root may quite possibly be one of the most overlooked medicinal herbs.

A favorite of King Tut (a large amount of licorice root was found in his tomb) and used by the Greeks as a cure-all much like the Chinese use ginseng, this herb has been around for thousands of years. It’s known for its sweet flavor - appropriate since it’s about fifty times sweeter than sugar - but licorice root has been used to treat everything from the common cold to cancer.

Licorice Root for Natural Adrenal System Support

Licorice is one of a group of plants that have a marked effect upon the endocrine system. The glycosides present in licorice have a structure that is similar to the natural steroids of the body. For this reason, herbalists have used licorice for centuries to support the adrenal system during times of excessive stress by keeping it in balance. Specifically, licorice contains glycyrrhizic acid which stimulates adrenal secretions ensuring that normal function is maintained.

Licorice Root for Natural Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

In addition, by enhancing cortisol activity, glycyrrhizin helps to increase energy, ease stress, and reduce the symptoms of ailments sensitive to cortisol levels, such as chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia. In fact, in the 1800s, licorice extract was a common remedy for a type of persistent fatigue known as neurasthenia--the condition we now know as chronic fatigue syndrome. In addition, since the glycyrrhizic acid found in licorice root encourages the function of the adrenal glands, it can help with feelings of nervousness and depression.

Licorice Root for Natural Women’s Health

Women's Formula from Baseline Nutritionals

Women should certainly appreciate the phytoestrogens in licorice root. They have a mild estrogenic effect, making the herb potentially useful in easing certain symptoms of PMS, such as irritability, bloating, and breast tenderness. In addition, the phytoestrogens in licorice root may help to minimize menopausal symptoms by compensating somewhat for the natural decline in a woman's estrogen levels following menopause. Another benefit is that it accomplishes all this while inhibiting the much stronger estrogenic effects presented by chemical estrogens in the environment—and even your body’s own powerful estrogens. In other words, it helps prevent estrogen dominance. This is why you’ll find licorice root as an ingredient in Jon Barron’s Women’s Formula.

Licorice Root for Skin Issues and Conditions

If you have skin issues, licorice root may be helpful for you as well. Research shows that licorice root gel can decrease the signs of eczema. In a study, it was found that 2% licorice root gel was most effective. But it can be found in poultices and salves used for treating skin rashes, psoriasis, dry skin and other skin conditions as well.

Licorice Root for Mild Pain and Resipatory Relief

Licorice root also has an aspirin-like action and has an anti-allergenic effect. This has made it useful in helping relieve headaches as well as hay fever and asthma related symptoms. It also acts as an expectorant, meaning it helps get rid of phlegm and can help control respiratory problems and treat sore throats.

Licorice Root for Natural Digestive Health

That's just scratching the surface of the many uses of licorice root. Licorice root also stimulates the production of digestive fluids and bile, soothes ulcers, helps reduce intestinal inflammation, and supports the healthy function of the kidneys, liver, and bladder. Its action in soothing ulcers is unique. Rather than inhibit the release of acid, licorice root stimulates the normal defense mechanisms that ward off ulcer formation. Specifically, licorice root improves both the quality and quantity of the protective mucous that lines the intestinal tract, increases the lifespan of the intestinal cell, and improves blood supply to the intestinal lining. In addition to helping lower stomach acid levels, which means it can help relieve heartburn and indigestion, licorice root acts as a mild laxative. And licorice Root stimulates the production of digestive fluids and bile For these reasons, you’ll find it used in Jon Barron’s Colon Regenerator formula and Liver Flush Tea.

More Natural Health Benefits of Licorice Root

If that’s not enough, licorice root has also been credited with helping relieve these following conditions:

  • athlete's foot
  • baldness
  • body odor
  • bursitis
  • canker sores
  • colds and flu
  • coughs
  • dandruff
  • emphysema
  • gingivitis and tooth decay
  • gout
  • HIV
  • viral infections
  • fungal infections
  • Lyme disease
  • shingles
  • sore throat
  • tendinitis
  • tuberculosis
  • yeast infections
  • prostate enlargement
  • arthritis

How to Take Licorice Root

Licorice root is made from peeled and unpeeled dried root and is available in a variety of forms from powdered to liquid extracts. Typically, you’ll find the root in tea, tablet and capsule form. Note: a small number of people may find their conditions are aggravated by the glycyrrhizin found in licorice root. For those instances, an extract that does not contain glycyrrhizin, referred to as deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL), can be used instead. And one final note: licorice root should not be confused with licorice candies which contain very little actual licorice and are mainly flavored with aniseed.

Learn more about relieving stress and anxiety.

Resources:
http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/licorice
http://www.herballegacy.com/Knuteson_History.html
http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-licorice-root.html

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Comments

  •  
    Submitted by Kristyne on
    November 28, 2014 - 6:13pm
    Michigan

    I've heard folks with high blood pressure should use licorice with caution as it can further exacerbate this condition. Can you please speak to that and advise whether any or all licorice should be avoided in that case. Thanks.

  •  
    Submitted by BaselineFoundation on
    December 12, 2014 - 4:46pm

    With licorice, it comes down to quantity and duration.

    When consumed in small amounts, it presents no problem for most people. When consumed in larger amounts for medicinal purposes, it may present a problem for a small number of people. However, when used daily in large amounts for more than 30 days at a time, it can cause low potassium levels and high blood pressure, but we’re talking about 5 grams a day or more at this level. Unless you’re using the licorice to treat an ulcer, you don’t need to use it at the higher levels.

    For example, Jon uses licorice at 300 mg per serving in his Colon Detoxifier. Note:

    • If you’re doing the accelerated detox, that’s five scoops a day for a total of about six day. Five scoops is only 1.5 g a day (less than 1/3 the level of concern) and only for six days (1/5 the level of concern).
    • If you’re doing the slow detox, it’s one scoop a day for 30 days.  And although the 30 days hits the duration of concern, at one scoop a day you’re talking about 1/15 the dosage of concern.

    Bottom line: licorice is like many herbs. If you overdo it, it can cause problems; if used properly, you get to enjoy the benefits. And for those of you who want to use larger amounts of licorice for extended periods of time—for managing gastric and duodenal ulcers, for example—you can always use deglycyrrhizinated licorice, which offers many of the benefits of licorice root, but without the blood pressure concerns.

  •  
    Submitted by Vera on
    November 29, 2014 - 1:17am
    London ,

    Can licorice be used where people have elevated or high blood pressure?

  •  
    Submitted by BaselineFoundation on
    December 12, 2014 - 4:46pm

    With licorice, it comes down to quantity and duration.

    When consumed in small amounts, it presents no problem for most people. When consumed in larger amounts for medicinal purposes, it may present a problem for a small number of people. However, when used daily in large amounts for more than 30 days at a time, it can cause low potassium levels and high blood pressure, but we’re talking about 5 grams a day or more at this level. Unless you’re using the licorice to treat an ulcer, you don’t need to use it at the higher levels.  For example, Jon uses licorice at 300 mg per serving in his Colon Detoxifier. Note:

    • If you’re doing the accelerated detox, that’s five scoops a day for a total of about six day. Five scoops is only 1.5 g a day (less than 1/3 the level of concern) and only for six days (1/5 the level of concern).
    • If you’re doing the slow detox, it’s one scoop a day for 30 days.  And although the 30 days hits the duration of concern, at one scoop a day you’re talking about 1/15 the dosage of concern.

    Bottom line: licorice is like many herbs. If you overdo it, it can cause problems; if used properly, you get to enjoy the benefits. And for those of you who want to use larger amounts of licorice for extended periods of time—for managing gastric and duodenal ulcers, for example—you can always use deglycyrrhizinated licorice, which offers many of the benefits of licorice root, but without the blood pressure concerns.

  •  
    Submitted by Pat on
    November 30, 2014 - 1:11am
    Arizona

    I am allergic to licorice. It gives me formication. It could be the glycyrrhizin, but I just stay away from it altogether. No sense in taking a chance of feeling miserable for hours.

  •  
    Submitted by Lisa on
    August 5, 2016 - 12:26pm
    Beverly , Massachusetts

    Is the amount of licorice root in this supplement ok for people with high blood pressure?

  •  
    Submitted by BaselineFoundation on
    August 8, 2016 - 11:25am

    An August 2001 article published in the “Journal of Human Hypertension” addressed that question. Using three study groups, composed of a total of 64 participants, various doses were used to compare blood pressure response. Group one consumed 200 g of sweet licorice daily for two weeks; group two consumed 100 g daily for four weeks; and group three consumed 50 g daily for four weeks. One serving of licorice candy is approximately equivalent to 50 grams of licorice.

    All groups had a rise in systolic blood pressure, averaging 14.4 mm/Hg for the 200 g group and a mere 3.1 mm for the 50 g group. So how does that relate to the supplement?

    50 g is just under 2 oz, or an entire bottle of the supplement. But keep in mind that licorice root is only one of 13 ingredients in the formula and that the formula is half alcohol and water. Now, to be sure, the herbs are concentrated 2.7 times in the formula—so you need to factor that in. But the bottom line is that you’d have to consume a number of bottles of the formula a day for several weeks just to match the 50 g group in the study. And considering that the recommended dose is not even one bottle, but 1/30th of a bottle, you’re a long, long, long, long way from doing that.

    Bottom line is that it is highly unlikely that it will present a problem, but as always, if you are using medication or under a doctor’s care, check with your doctor first.

  •  
    Submitted by Sara on
    December 10, 2016 - 9:32am

    Is Licorice Root is good for blood pressure patients?

  •  
    Submitted by BaselineFoundation on
    December 13, 2016 - 10:34am

    This question is answered three times just immediately above.

  •  
    Submitted by Lissa on
    January 10, 2017 - 4:19pm
    Arvada , Colorado

    Is there a recommended dosage for taking Licorice Root on a daily maintenance basis? Thank you.

  •  
    Submitted by Sam on
    April 4, 2018 - 2:57pm
    Okc , Oklahoma

    I use to keep away from nicotine. So usually have stick in my mouth. Are most or all of these comments,questions pertaining to non stick?

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