11 Amazing Benefits of Licorice for Skin, Hair and Health
You’ve probably heard of licorice, it’s the root of a plant known as Glycyrrhiza glabra, and its sweet extract is more commonly used for flavor. However, there is some indisputable medical evidence about licorice, which points to a number of its health benefits.
Before getting more into the matter, remember to consult your doctor prior to using too much licorice in your diet. The reason is that glycyrrhizinated licorice has some significant disadvantages. First, it can be quite dangerous for pregnant women, as it increases the risk of giving birth before term, if it’s consumed in large quantities. It can also be detrimental for your health, if you’re hypertensive. Large amounts of licorice can damage your cortisol levels, which means it will mess up with your metabolism and the way you handle stress.
Nevertheless, these adverse effects occur only if you consume ridiculous amount of licorice for a period larger than 6 weeks. Otherwise, if you are using deglycyrrhizinated licorice, you have nothing to worry about and can continue enjoying the benefits it has to offer you.
- Licorice has great anti-inflammatory properties. Some studies show that it can be used in all sorts of affections that cause inflammatory reactions in the body, being a great at-home remedy. One of the primary issues that affects women around the world is under eye bags. If you want to take care of your under eye bags, you can consider using some licorice extract. In fact, some make-up artists also use a combination between licorice extract and K vitamin to improve the overall aspect of facial skin and prepare it for makeup.
- Licorice can aid in the cure of gastritis. More interestingly, licorice doesn’t only have natural anti-inflammatory properties, but it can control the damage done by over the counter anti-inflammatory drugs on your stomach. If you are in the habit of taking too many such pills, you may develop a form of gastritis. For this particular type of gastritis, licorice has proven to be a great help, in combination with other medicine.
- Licorice has also been found to reduce the negative effects of acid reflux. The reason is because it calms the esophagus and stomach, creating an alkaline environment and decreasing swelling. Acid reflux, also known as GERD, happens when your esophageal sphincter, located between your esophagus and your stomach, doesn’t close properly. This allows the contents of your stomach to overflow into your throat causing unpleasant heart-burn sensations. Luckily, licorice is a great home-remedy for this.
- Licorice has proven quite useful in the treatment of colic. If your child cries for apparently no reason, you may want to consider the possibility of colic. If your pediatrician confirms this cause, you can try some herbal tea which mixes more plants with soothing effect: mint, chamomile, fennel and licorice. This can help ease your baby’s pain due to these plants’ anti-inflammatory effect.
- Licorice is a beauty remedy. If you have brown spots on your skin, you must know they are a result of the hyperactivity of tyrosinase. Tyrosinase is an enzyme which plays a fundamental role in the biosynthesis of melanin, which in turn determines your skin and hair color. Some studies argue that licorice inhibits the negative effect of this enzyme, thus helping you remove brown spots and becoming a valuable best skin brightener. If you are interested in a home remedy for dark circles under your eyes that employs the benefits of licorice, you can use it directly on the affected areas.
- Licorice can be a possible treatment for melanoma. Other scientists who aim to find a reliable cure against skin cancer have researched the positive effects that licorice has on reducing the impact that solar UV rays have on our skin. Apparently, licorice has a substance called Licochalcone A that can inhibit the activity of various proteins directly involved in the development and spreading of skin cancer. This can indeed turn out to be a miraculous cure, since so many people are affected by the tars of this malady.
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- Licorice has positive effects on the liver. There is also some research done on the way that licorice extract, combined with water can effectively cure liver toxicity. For the moment, the most current experiments were only done on lab rats, but there is indisputable evidence which confirms that licorice water extract has a hepatoprotective effect.
For all these reasons, licorice is an amazing natural remedy for various affections. Nevertheless, remember to always check with your doctor before using even the most praised home treatments.