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Biological Name: Glycyzrrhiza glabralicorice

Family: Papilionaceae, Leguminosae

Other Names: Liquorice, Licorice, Erattimadhuram, Yashtimadhu, Atimadhuram, Mithi-lakdi, licorice root, Mulathi, sweetwood, Liquorice

Additional Info: The plant can be met across the globe. It is thought to harmonize the relations.

Elements Applied: Dried root is commonly applied in herbal medicine.

Active Components:

  • Triterpenes belonging to oleanane type, mostly glycyrrhizin, as well as its glycyrrhitic acid (agylcone glycyrrhetinic acid), licoric acid, liquiritic acid, isoglabrolide, glycyrrhetol, phytosterols and glabrolide;
  • Iisoflavonoids and flavonoids; kumatakenin, liquiritigenin, glyzarin, liquiritin, glabrone, rhamnoliquiritin, glabrol, neoliquiritin, formononetin, licoflavonol, licoisoflavanone, licoisoflavones A and B, and so on.
  • Coumarins; herniarin glycyrin, umbelliferone, liqcoumarin.
  • Polysaccharides, mostly glucans.
  • Chalcones; rhamnoisoliquiritin, echinatin, liquiritigenin, licochalcones A and B, isoliquiritigenin, licuraside, neosoliquiritin, and so on.
  • Volatile oil, which includes benzaldehyde, fenchone, furfuryl alcohol, and linalool.
  • Other; amino acid, sugars, starch, and so on.

History: Licorice has been conventionally used in herbal medicine since time immemorial. According to contemporary researches, it is potent of stimulating liver, the endocrine system, and other organs. Licorice triterpenes are processed by the organism to form the substances, which are similar to adrenal cortex hormones in their constitution. Due to this reason it is applied for a range of inflammations.

Used For: The herb is known to relieve inflammations, purify liver, reduce spasms and pains, promote vomiting and expectoration, relieve constipation, rejuvenate the body, and calm the nervous system.

The range of conditions in which Licorice is employed includes: painful urination, ulcers, sore throat, muscle spasms, mucous membrane looseness, constipation, laryngitis, inflammation, hyperacidity, heart weakness, general debility, coughs, colds, bronchitis, and stomachaches.

Due to its positive activity on the liver, the herb is applied for treating cirrhosis and recurrent hepatitis, for which aims it is popularly prescribed in Japan. The majority of licorice studies were based on triterpene glycyrrhizin research. The substance takes responsibility for decreasing hepatocyte disorder induced by PCB, hexachloride, benzene and tetrachloride. It improves antibody production by triggering interleukin secretion by the body.

Glycyrrhizin decreases the development of RNA and DNA viruses, as well as Herpes simplex virus, which is completely destroyed due to its actions. The substance is widely applied in bronchial conditions like coughs, bronchitis, and catarrh. Licorice is applied as part of allopathy treatment for peptic ulcers, which is common to its application in gastric ulcer and gastritis. It may also be applied to relieve stomach colic.

Licorice is a nutritional agent for brain, due to its ability to stimulate cerebrospinal and cranial fluid production. It enhances one’s eye sight, hair condition, and body complexion.

Preparation and Intake: The herb is applied in form of ghee, powder, milk and water decoction.

To prepare a decoction, take a half to a teaspoon of the root and fill it up with a cup of water, boil it up and keep on low heat for ten to fifteen minutes. The result is consumed thrice per day.

In form of tincture the herb is applied at a dose of 1-3 ml thrice per day.

Safety: Warning! When taken in large amounts for a prolonged period, the herb affects electrolyte balance in the body. It produces an effect resembling to ACTH, thus leading to sodium accumulation. Though the plant contains the elements which counteract this effect, Licorice is not recommended to people suffering from high blood pressure, kidney conditions, or pregnant women.

The herb may influence potassium and calcium absorption. It should not be used by people exposed to elevated arterial tension and osteoporosis. Licorice medications should be supplied by milk.

There is no further data concerning the herb’s safety level. Exercise care. Ayurvedic plants are commonly combined with other herbal remedies to reduce the toxic effect one of them may produce on the body. Use only under medical control.