What You Need to Know
It’s very important to know what kind of licorice root supplement you’re looking for. There are two major types available, licorice root extract, or deglycyrrhizinated (DGL) licorice. While it’s been known to be effective for a variety of uses, straight licorice root extract may also cause problems when taken at high doses or long term.
Because the dosage for licorice can cause issues, it’s important to look at any possible drug interactions or current concerns before starting this product. Individual dosage for licorice root will vary from person to person.
Types of licorice supplements
Licorice root extract may be found in liquid, capsule or powder form. DGL licorice is typically used for soothing the stomach and comes in capsules and powders.
Without the active ingredient glycyrrhizin, DGL licorice will not have the same possible side effects. Keep in mind, it will also not provide some of the benefits of pure licorice root, as the glycyrrhizin is one of the main medicinal components of this healing herb.
Benefits of licorice root extract
Licorice root may benefit several serious ailments. The supplement has been through clinical trials for prostate cancer and hepatitis C. The primary process of licorice is to lower inflammation. This explains its traditional use to cure cough, remove mucus, and improve the stomach lining.
Because of its potential boost to hormone levels, licorice might increase energy levels. Licorice is thought to boost cortisol, a hormone released from the adrenal glands during times of stress or pressure. People with low levels of cortisol might see a benefit from this supplement.
For women specifically, licorice root may help to increase estrogen. It may also improve the symptoms of hot flashes during menopause. Licorice root has also been studied for its assistance with the effects of polycystic ovarian syndrome, or PCOS.
Cons of licorice root extract
Because of its potency, it’s important to take care when using a licorice supplement. Licorice may cause high blood pressure and increase cortisol, or “stress hormones.” Use of the herb may lower potassium levels when used for long periods of time or with larger doses. Some drugs are not as effective when using large amounts of licorice. There may also be an increase in drug side effects or interactions. Always speak with a medical professional before starting a new supplement.