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9 Amazing Benefits of Licorice Root You Don’t Know About

Avatar photo 9 years ago 7 minute read

Before reading this article, grab any cosmetic product you have and check the ingredients. Does it have licorice in it? If it has, then you’re in good hands. No wonder you have perfectly-glowing skin. However; licorice, especially black licorice, is more than just a skin care ingredient.

Licorice is the underground stem and root of the herbal plant, Glycyrrhiza glabra.

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For centuries, Greeks, Asians and Egyptian nations use licorice for flavoring, as well as for medicinal and confectionery purposes.

It has tons of healthy compounds, such as flavonoids, asparagines and volatile oils. What sets licorice apart is its component called glycyrrhizic acid, which is responsible for its sweet flavor. In fact, it acts as sweetener in many herbal remedies, and even in tobaccos.

Aside from being a staple kitchen ingredient, licorice can also be your best friend in addressing tons of medical issues. Here are nine amazing benefits of licorice root your grandmother forgot to tell you about:

1. It Is An Excellent Partner In Oral Health

brushing your teethHere’s the truth: brushing your teeth may not be enough to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Recent studies show that more than 90 percent of American adults have had some form of tooth decay at one time.

Worse yet, almost 80 percent of Americans have some form of gum disease and they don’t even know it. Eww.

Well, there’s good news for you. The scientist guys with brilliant minds found out that dried licorice root is good for oral health.

Believe it or not, it can wage a war against both cavities and gum disease – and win it. Thanks to its licoricidin and licorisoflavan A compounds, licorice can keep the bacterial growth that causes plaque buildup to a minimum level.

This means lower risk of tooth decay, gum disease and periodontitis. Not bad, right?

2. It Can Help With Depression And Anxiety

DepressionAdmit it. At one point or another in your life, you’ve probably been so depressed that you couldn’t even eat or even leave your room.

That’s fine. Heartbreak, problems at home, issues with your boss, or even failure can make you feel depressed. However, ending your life is not exactly the best way to deal with it.

The next time you feel down in the dumps, grab licorice root and munch away. Based on research, the gly

Aside from making your life sweeter, licorice root also has Asparagine amino acid to help maintain equilibrium in your nervous system. Every time you are down and feel that the whole world is against you, try licorice tea and drink it twice a day.

adrenal glands
Photo by Sunshineconnelly / CC BY

It can cure depression, anxiety and chase your blues away.cyrrhizic acid found on this natural antidepressant herb helps promote adrenal gland function. Keep in mind that adrenal glands regulate cortisol, aka the stress hormones. Once cortisol takes over your body, you feel depressed, anxious and even experience chronic fatigue.

3. It Is Your Best Friend During The Menopausal Stage

sanitary napkinsMenopause is something many women dread. For sure, you’ve heard a lot of horror stories from women and how annoying it can be.

While no sanitary napkins and tampons for the next 30 or so years sounds appealing, going through that process is not.

You might say that’s what pills are for – to help regulate hormones and make the transition easier for you. Well, do you even know what’s inside them? And how sure are you that you won’t experience any side effects?

symptoms that come with menopauseThankfully, licorice can offer its services. Licorice root has phytoestrogenic and antioxidant properties to help balance your hormones and make you feel better, even with the troubling symptoms that come with menopause. In fact, a capsule of licorice root everyday can be a big help in balancing and regulating your hormone production as you go through menopause.

Finally, you can now say bye-bye to mood swings, fatigue, hot flashes and any other symptoms associated with menopause.

4. It Can Work With PMS And Menstrual Cramps, Too

Menstrual Cramps
Photo by 阮芊菡 JUAN CHIEN-HAN / CC BY

The good news is you don’t have to be 50 just to enjoy the many benefits of licorice root.

Believe it or not, this excellent herb can also be your best friend during that time of the month, when you’re about to paint the town red.

Licorice root has anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and mild estrogenic activity to help relieve PMS symptoms such as nausea, mood swings, bloating and breast tenderness.

Aside from this, licorice root can also be an excellent treatment for menstrual cramps.

Don’t forget to drink licorice root tea three days before your expected period. This can help you with menstrual cramps and balance your hormones before your red days. It can also help you ease the symptoms that come with menstruation, so you can stop screaming at everyone around you.

5. It Is The Perfect Addition To Your Hair Care Routine

Aloe veraAloe vera is the natural ultimate hair care treatment. But, did you know that licorice deserves a spot, too?

Licorice root has elements such as protein, flavonoids, choline, phytoestrogens and essential oils to promote healthy hair and scalp.

Licorice root can prevent hair loss and yes, it can fight against premature balding too, at least according to some accounts.

Aside from this, licorice root has demulcent properties, which can be effective when you are trying to get rid of scabs and dandruff or treat dry scalp.

shampooAt the same time, these demulcent properties are also excellent hair growth boosters. Licorice traps the essential moisture needed by your scalp to help hair grow thicker and stronger.

Before you buy any hair products, make sure that your shampoo and conditioner has licorice roots in its ingredients. Well, you now know what it can do, right?

6. It Heals Various Skin Conditions

Photo by BruceBlaus / CC BY-SA

Eczema, psoriasis, dry skin, rashes – these are only some of the many annoying skin conditions, which any woman in this planet would not want to have.

Creams and lotions that claim to be gentle on sensitive skin may work. However, there’s no harm in going herbal, don’t you think?

In this case, licorice root can help in treating a number of skin conditions. Licorice is antiseptic and anti-inflammatory. At the same time, its demulcent properties can treat different skin issues, such as inflammation and redness.

And that’s not all. Licorice root also has hydrating properties that helps trap moisture to prevent dryness of skin. In return, it makes your skin look healthier and younger. All you need to do is to apply a cool and used licorice tea on your skin to keep it fresh like a baby.

7. It Helps You With Your Weight Loss Goals

Weight LossHave you always wanted to lose weight? Well, who wouldn’t want that, right? After all, living in this world where size zero is perfect will make you want to skip that burger.

However, saying no to anything fatty and processed is not enough to help you achieve that perfect body.

According to a study, participants who took 3.5 grams of licorice root everyday for two months recorded a significant decrease in their body fat mass.

according to the study’s researchersDespite its weight loss benefits, it is not advisable to take licorice root for longer periods. In fact, according to the study’s researchers, participants were asked to take a one-week break after two weeks of taking licorice root within the two-month period.

Yes, it may help. However, it is best if you combine licorice root with balanced diet and regular exercise. That is the ultimate solution to your weight loss issues.

8. It Is A Natural Treatment For Cough And Sore Throat

CoughIt’s almost winter and as expected, flu season is on the way. What do you usually do when you get a cough and sore throat during the season?

Your reliable cough syrup may bring you the relief you need, but if you want to keep things on the safe side, then you should consider licorice root, too.

Licorice root has an expectorant activity, which can promote bronchial secretions and break down the phlegm to make it easy to cough it out.

It also has anti-inflammatory, antiviral and demulcent properties that lubricate inflamed respiratory tracts and sore throats. At the same time, it fights any respiratory tract infections, viral flu and bronchial spasms.

Just shred licorice root into boiling water and let it simmer for 10 minutes. Get rid of the shredded roots and drink the extract. You’ll feel better afterwards.

9. It Can Treat Stomach And Gastric Problems

StomachDo you always find it hard to let go down there? If you have been experiencing intestinal tract and digestive issues, then licorice root can also be your best friend.

Licorice root has flavonoids and chalcones, which can help against irritation and inflammation in the digestive tract and mucus lining in the stomach.

It also soothes and calms the digestive system to promote free-flowing bowel movements.

All you have to do is to drink licorice tea two to three times a day to alleviate any stomach or gastric problems.

Surprised? Don’t be. These benefits only prove why licorice is one of the most widely used and important herbs today. However, be careful. Not all licorice sticks found in grocery stores contain real licorice root. Many licorice candies are flavored with anise, which is, well, not that good for you.