What are the health benefits of Licorice Root? Licorice root has been around for a long time. It is one of the world’s oldest herbal remedies. And it comes from a licorice plant called glycyrrhiza glabra. Licorice root has been used in traditional Chinese and middle eastern medicines with the goal of treating an upset stomach, reduce inflammation and fix respiratory issues.
Licorice root primary compound is glycyrrhiza and this is what gives the root its sweet flavor. The compounds in licorice root have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Some research has shown promising potential health benefits to Licorice root.
One of the research studies has shown that it can improve skin conditions such as acne and eczema. A two-week study that was done on 60 adults applying a topical gel that had licorice extract showed it significantly improved their eczema.
There was another study that showed that licorice extract relieved symptoms of indigestion such as acid reflux, upset stomach and heart burn. There was a one-month study that was on 50 adults that had indigestion. They took 75mg licorice capsule twice daily and the effect was it resulted in significant improvements in their symptoms compared to the placebo group.
There was a 2-month study on 58 adults that took a daily dose of licorice root. And it revealed that it was more effective at reducing their symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease over a 2-year period vs common antiacids.
Larger studies on human beings are still needed to 100% validate these findings.
Studies have shown that licorice extract has been linked to slowing or preventing cell growth in skin, breast, colorectal cancer, prostate cancers, etc.
Upper Respiratory Conditions
Animal research studies have shown that licorice extract can help relieve asthma. There have been some test tubes and human studies that have shown that licorice root tea and extract can protect against strep throat. And prevents sore throat after surgery.
It May Prevent Cavities
Research suggests that licorice root can help protect against bacteria that can lead to cavities. A 3-week study gave 66 preschool aged kids sugar free lollipops that contained 15mg of licorice root twice per day during the school week. The study showed that it significantly reduced the number of streptococcus mutans bacteria. And this is one of the main causes of cavities.
Overconsumption of Licorice Root
The side effect of large doses of licorice root are:
- High Blood Pressure
- Muscle Weakness
- Low Potassium Levels
- Abnormal heart rhythms
The following drug medications doesn’t interact well with licorice root.
- Blood Pressure Medications
- Blood thinners
- Cholesterol medications
- Estrogen contraceptives
The Bottom Line is licorice root extract has been around for centuries and it has been used to treat upper respiratory problems. And it has been used to treat acid reflux, peptic ulcers and skin issues like eczema and other health issues.
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