Licorice root is used to target areas like ulcers,weight loss and most, as recent studies has shown, chronic fatigue syndrome. Depleted stress hormones level are usually responsible for chronic fatigue, depression and anxiety, so Licorice might be able to bring relief of mild depressions. Licorice root contains a component that is 50 times sweeter than sugar, which helps to prevent the breakdown of certain hormones that are necessary in elevating the mood. On top of that, Licorice contains other elements that help with the absorption of serotonin that directly fights depression.
This little-known treatment for depression is actually quite effective – it has more antidepressant compounds than St. John’s Wort, but it has not enjoyed the same press. Many of its compounds are, in fact, MAO inhibitors. Better known for its role in candy flavoring, the root contains glycyrrhizin, which stimulates the adrenal glands to produce hydrocortisone in the body. Interestingly, adrenal gland dysfunction has been linked to depression and related disorders.
- Licorice root can be drunk as a tea, up to three cups a day, or taken in capsule form.
- But be cautious about taking licorice for prolonged periods of time (more than 4 weeks) as it can cause water retention and high blood pressure.