Commonly used as a medicine to treat upper respiratory conditions such as bronchitis, coughs, sore throat and hoarseness. Very effective cough suppressant and safer than codeine based medicines. The soothing nature of licorice comes from the high mucilage content of the rhizome, which helps irritated mucous membranes. It also has the ability to act as an expectorant, increasing the secretion of the bronchial glands. In naturopathic medicine it is used to treat peptic ulcers. Both stomach and duodenal ulcers benefit from it’s healing properties and it can also soothe an upset stomach.
Due to licorice being antispasmodic in the bowel, it is useful in the treatment of leaky gut syndrome, Chrohn’s disease and irritable bowel syndrome.
The root extract produces a mild estrogenic effect. Useful in the treatment of menopausal symptoms, relieving cramps and regulating menstruation.
These same anti-viral properties are used in topical treatment for oral and genital herpes, shingles and eye conditions. It can used in poultices to treat dermatitis and infections of the skin.
It is used as an ingredient for an emollient, along with other cleansing and healing herbs, to help open the pores of the skin. It contains Isoflavones (phytoestrogens) which affect the bodies endocrine system.
Licorice as an adaptogen, is thought to increase the bodies resistance to stress, trauma and fatigue, and is believed to regulate the HPA axis.
It is useful also for auto-immune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, scleroderma and animal dander allergies.
Licorice is used as one of the ingredients in the traditional Chinese medicine, Fu Zheng. It makes a wonderful herbal tea due to it’s natural sweet flavor. Used effectively as a diuretic and laxative.