What are the Most Common Licorice Benefits?

Laura M. Sands

Among the most common licorice benefits are its curative properties, which are important to regaining good health. Such curative properties include licorice being useful in the treatment of colds, canker sores, high blood pressure, peptic ulcers, indigestion and certain respiratory illnesses. There is even some evidence which indicates that treating cancer may be included among the best licorice benefits.

Licorice may be useful in the treatment of colds.
Licorice may be useful in the treatment of colds.

While many think of licorice as a sweet candied treat, the truth is that licorice is actually an herb that has been used in homeopathic remedies for centuries. As scientists study possible licorice benefits, they have identified that a specific type of licorice, containing an ingredient known as deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL), is useful in treating respiratory conditions including asthma. Not to be confused with another type of licorice containing an ingredient known as glycyrrhiza, licorice with DGL has promising health benefits with very few side effects.

Supplements made from licorice root are used to treat a variety of health aliments.
Supplements made from licorice root are used to treat a variety of health aliments.

While many people currently take licorice for blood pressure and other ailments, eating licorice candy is not likely to cure any of these. In fact, researchers do not yet know the exact dosages needed to treat some of the illnesses that licorice may soothe, but they are clear that accessing any real licorice benefits from candy is unlikely. Instead, licorice supplements, which are made from the plant’s roots are much more promising to this effort. Licorice tea is also believed to be helpful.

Licorice may help treat high blood pressure.
Licorice may help treat high blood pressure.

Children and adults suffering from the common cold may find that licorice benefits the body by assisting in a faster recovery. Anecdotal evidence also suggests that licorice tea may soothe a cough and sore throat, which often accompanies a cold. Licorice root is also believed to help upper respiratory infections, which sometimes follow a cold.

Individuals who suffer from canker sores may also find that gargling with licorice benefits healing times and helps relieve the pain that accompanies mouth sores. Used in this way, a person would need to dissolve a DGL supplement in warm water to create a gargle that can be used several times per day. Researchers who have studied the effectiveness of licorice in treating canker sores have found that licorice has promising benefit when used in this way.

Healing peptic ulcers appears to also be among the many licorice benefits people have discovered from generations of use. Along with soothing stomach indigestion, some studies, as well as anecdotal evidence, reveal that DGL either heals peptic ulcers or reduces the number of ulcers a person is afflicted with. More research is necessary, but so far doctors are hopeful about using licorice in this way.

Perhaps one of the greatest licorice benefits, however, is that it may destroy cancer. Another substance found in licorice, known as Licochalcone-A, eliminates cancer cells during laboratory testing. While further testing continues, researchers are optimistic that this simple remedy will continue to hold up to scientific scrutiny as an effective weapon against various forms of cancer. As an affordable, safe and nontoxic remedy, licorice holds serious promise in the fight against cancer and many other conditions.

Licorice can be used to heal peptic ulcers.
Licorice can be used to heal peptic ulcers.

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