Is Licorice A Laxative? You Bet (And A Lot More)


licorice 3Licorice is one the most widely used herbs today and its medicinal value has been known for over 5000 years. This may naturally leave you wondering “is licorice root a laxative?”

It is and a lot more. You will learn all the different things licorice can do and why it’s so beneficial. There are a few safety concerns you should know about before taking, so you’ll see that too.

Let’s get into it.

Yes, Licorice Can Help Constipation

Most people have some form of constipation and up to 10% of the American population suffer from it chronically; the diets American’s enjoy is the main cause of this problem. In places where a natural diet is consumed and fiber rich foods are eaten, constipation is rarely a problem.

There are other causes like lack of muscular tone in the bowels, not chewing food enough, wrong combinations of food at one meal, and things of this nature.

Constipation effects more than you think and can have some bad side effects. You can experience anything from backache, and bad breath to insomnia, lack of concentration and depression. It’s bad to have waste matter stay in your system too long.

If you eat more high fiber foods like fruits and vegetables, along with whole grain items, you can easily prevent and relieve constipation. If you need an extra boost for a bowel movement licorice can provide a mild laxative effect. You shouldn’t take licorice candies though, most have none of the herb in it.

How To Take Licorice

There are a few ways to take licorice. The first way is to make a licorice decoction with the powdered root. Take 1/2 teaspoons per cup of water and boil for 10 minutes. You can drink 2 cups a day.

Another option is a licorice extract. This is my favorite way to take herbs and very convenient. It’s very effective and doesn’t involve all the steps of making a herbal tea (or the clean up either). All you have to do is add 10 to 20 drops to water or juice a few times a day.

Licorice is very sweet tasting and perfect for improving the flavor of other teas. You can get good results with constipation by adding a pinch of powdered licorice to your favorite herbal beverage.

You can even stir a herbal drink with licorice sticks to gets it benefits.

What Else Can Licorice Do For Me?

I have found over 36 benefits for this herb. You can read them all here. You can watch this video I made about licorice too:

Besides being a laxative, licorice is a:

  • Tonic: Herb that restores and strengthens the entire system. Produces and restores normal tone.
  • Expectorant: Promotes the thinning and ejection or exudate from the lungs, bronchi, and trachea; sometimes the meaning is extended to all remedies that quiet cough.
  • Demulcent: Soothes, protects, and relieves the irritation of inflamed mucous membranes and other surfaces.
  • Pectoral: Relieves disorders of the chest and lungs, such as an expectorant.
  • Emollient: A substance that is usually used externally to soften and soothe the skin.

Licorice is most commonly used for respiratory issues and for coughs, colds, sore throats and flu. It also has a long history of treating ulcers and gum inflammation too.

Glycyrrhetinic acid (GA), which is found in licorice, is why this herb is so valuable. GA can have bad side effects if taken in too large of quantities or for too long. There’s a licorice preparation called deglycyrrhetinic licorice (DGL) that should be used in place of concentrated licorice extract if you plan on using for long term.

Warnings And Safety Concerns

Some people deem licorice to dangerous to use, which is crazy. This herb is fine as long as you take the recommended dosage and don’t abuse it. In a few cases people ate very large amounts of concentrated licorice extract candies and ended up in the hospital. One person ate a pound of licorice candy every day for 9 straight days.

Another person ate 4 ounces of the candy everyday for 7 years. This is the type of excess that leads to problems. It’s the persons fault for taking too much, not the herb.

Here’s a list of overdoses symptoms you should know just in case:

  • Headache
  • Facial puffiness
  • Ankle swelling
  • Weakness
  • Lethargy

The following people should avoid licorice:

  • History of diabetes
  • Glaucoma
  • High blood pressure
  • Women who are pregnant or nursing
  • Children under 2

If you are giving to older children or people over 65 start off with 1/3rd to 2/3rd of the recommended dosage and increase if necessary.

Other Herbs For Constipation

If the side effects of licorice make you nervous (they shouldn’t) or you can’t get your hands on it, here’s a list of herbs that act as laxatives:

Like I mentioned before, eat whole grain and high fiber foods for best results.

Give Licorice A Try!

This wonderful herb can help with your inability to go to the bathroom and do so much more for you. If you watched the video above you know licorice is very valuable medicinally.

Picking high quality licorice is essential to getting good results. If you get mediocre or low quality herbs you are going to have a bad experience.  I personally only get herbal products from a few places. Click below to see my favorite place to buy licorice.

My Favorite Place To Buy Licorice Products

You’ll find all the licorice preparations mentioned in this article there and different amounts to suit your needs and budget.

If you have any questions, comment below and I’ll make sure to respond as quickly as possible. If you found this information useful share on social media for friends and family to see.

Thanks for reading!







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