Whether you’re still digesting Thanksgiving dinner from last week, or just looking for a little extra immune support this season, we’ve got a great herb to add to your rotation. Herbalist and acupuncture master, Mona Dan of LA holistic wellness center, Vie Healing, is breaking down the benefits of licorice root below…
Licorice Root is considered a great detoxifier in China. It is one of the most used Chinese herbs in every herbalist’s cabinet making it an indispensable one in many herbal formulas. There are many properties to this herb that make it special, but the main reason it is used is because of its ability to harmonize with other herbs.
Today, there are plenty of ready-made licorice root products to choose from such as tea, chew sticks, extract, powder and supplements. Popularity rose after Western pharmacology discovered (through extensive research) that licorice has many anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic functions.
Why should I use licorice root?
Licorice root is incredible for detoxifying the body — it can remove over twelve hundred toxins. The root is included in many Chinese herbal formulas because of its ability enhance the effects of the other herbs while also reducing negative side effects.
This unique herb is a very common herb within the Chinese medical community. It targets many essential necessities to balance our bodies. It is recommended to take licorice root in a proper herb formula to ensure proper usage.
Tell me more about the benefits…
It is used in Chinese medicine for its harmonizing effects. This herb can treat many ailments and reduce the toxicity of other herbs, which makes it a perfect addition to a herb formula. Licorice root holds the formula together, binding it to be delivered to the body in the most effective form.
Cold and flu prevention | Licorice is anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiviral, antioxidant and antispasmodic in nature. It’s majorly beneficial for treating the common cold, flu and a sore throat, including many other illnesses both viral and bacterial. Glycyrrhiza acid is the key component in fighting viruses and bacteria.
Digestion | For digestion in specific ulcers, licorice root has the ability to lower acid levels in the stomach, relieve indigestion and treat heartburn. Also, licorice root has a mild laxative effect and also reduces inflammation and irritation in the digestive tract. It also helps the proper flow of bile be released by the liver.
Immunity | Licorice root can also enhance interferon levels boosting the immune system. Interferon is a chemical that fights viruses. Gyrrhizinic acid content also stops the growth of harmful cells.
Stress reduction | Over time our adrenal glands can be exhausted by the constant release of adrenaline and cortisol. Licorice root can give the adrenal gland some relief. Licorice root extract supports the adrenal gland, which assists in healthy levels of cortisol release in the body.
Skin and Teeth | Topical lotions containing licorice roots are recommended for treating skin issues like eczema. Licorice can also be a successful dermatological treatment due to its antibacterial properties. It is also used in holistic teeth treatments to kill bacteria and assist in relieving tooth decay, gingivitis and canker sores.
How do I use licorice root?
In Chinese medicine licorice root is originally made from both the peeled and unpeeled dried root — this includes a variety of forms from powdered to liquid extracts. However, aside from the Chinese powder form, supplements and tablets are available as well. But the main ways to consume licorice root is through drinking tea.
Some may find conditions a bit aggravated by the glycyrrhizin found in licorice root. In those cases, deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL) can be used instead, which is a similar product except that the glycyrrhizin is removed.
Are there any warnings associated with licorice root?In large dosages licorice can increase cortisol levels and affect high blood pressure negatively. There have been studies also indicating its effect on lowering potassium levels and also slowing down drug metabolism.
The Chalkboard Mag and its materials are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. All material on The Chalkboard Mag is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise or other health-related programs.