Glycyrrhiza glabra L., or licorice root, has been used for thousands of years. Known as gan cao in China, it has an affinity with the endocrine system, regulating hormones and strengthening the action of the stress hormone cortisol, reducing testosterone synthesis in women, acting like estrogen and reducing body fat. It is considered to be an expectorant, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic and anti-arthritic. Licorice should be used carefully as it can be harmful to people with high blood pressure or heart conditions or in prolonged use.

Research & Information

History of the endocrine effects of licorice. Armanini D, Fiore C, Mattarello MJ, Bielenberg J, Palermo M.Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences -Endocrinology University of Padua, Italy. Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes. 2002 Sep;110(6):257-61.