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Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)


From earliest recorded human history, licorice root (glycyrrhiza glabra) has been a valued food and medicine.

Written into the papyrus scrolls of ancient Egypt were recipes for the use of licorice root, including its use as a sweet drink, revered as an ‘elixir of life’ and preserver of youth and beauty.  Undoubtedly this can be attributed to licorice root’s role in protecting and preserving adrenal gland integrity, and its role in regulating and optimising hormone function.

Later, the licorice root was utilised by the troops of Alexander the Great, who were able to march for extended periods with little food, but using the properties of licorice root to preserve their strength and vitality, allaying hunger, thirst, and adrenal fatigue.

Licorice is a valued herb in Ayurveda, TCM and modern Western herbal medicine, having many recognised actions and applications.

As well as tasting delicious, licorice root has a wide array of beneficial activities in the body, and applications in modern health care.  It is a soothing demulcent, which encourages increased munin secretion – the protective coating of the respiratory and gastrointestinal epithelium – so is useful for soothing gastric and respiratory irritations, including dry cough, and stomach ulcer pains.  It is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory, which can benefit arthritic complaints.  It has antiviral properties which make it a valuable treatment for viral infection, including the herpes family of viruses, and is directly active against the h.pylori bacteria – the ‘stomach ulcer’ bug.

Licorice plays a role in moderating sugar metabolism, and is used to balance hyperactivity caused by elevated blood sugars.

Because of its multiple benefits, and status as a general tonic for all-round health and wellbeing, licorice root is included in many of Medicine Tree’s blends.  As well as providing multiple health benefits, licorice has a sweet flavour that horses enjoy, and horses will actively seek out its deliciousness within their feed.  This can help picky or easily distracted eaters to become more enthusiastic about their food.

Licorice features prominently in Zenolyte, due to it’s multiple benefits for gastrointestinal health and wellness.  Licorice is also featured in GastroZen, Halcyon, BioZen, Quell, HydraSol and Rejuve.

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