Licorice Root Side Effects

Side Effects

Licorice root side effects, precautions, and considerations of use, are something to be aware of before starting any licorice supplementation regimen.

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Precautions on Licorice Root Uses

Licorice Root Side Effects

Supplements of licorice come in two forms: either with glycyrrhizin (standard) or without glycyrrhizin (deglycyrrhizinated licorice, or DGL).

Each type is best used for certain conditions and should be discussed with a professional healthcare provider. For example, standard licorice containing glycyrrhizin is generally used for respiratory infections. On the other hand, DGL (deglycyrrhizinated), meaning without glycyrrhizin is used for conditions of the digestive tract, such as ulcers.

Licorice root side effects may include fluid retention, high blood pressure, and potassium loss if taken at large doses exceeding 3 grams daily for more than 4 to 6 weeks. In fact, while taking licorice, it is important to include potassium-rich foods such as bananas, orange juice, apricots, vegetables, etc. Avoid taking more than the recommended dosage. In addition, signs of overdose include: headache, facial puffiness, ankle swelling, weakness, and lethargy.

It is recommended that therapeutic amounts of medicinal licorice root uses should only be taken in consultation with a professional healthcare provider.

Who should avoid licorice root uses……….

People who have high blood pressure or disorders that can cause fluid retention should not take regular licorice.

If you suffer from heart, liver, or kidney disease you should refrain from using it.

People with low potassium blood levels and diabetes should also avoid licorice root uses.

If you have glaucoma extreme caution is advised and, as such, you should check with a physician.

People who have estrogen-sensitive disorders should avoid licorice because it promotes the conversion of testosterone into estrogen. These conditions include: fibrocystic breasts, breast cancer, or uterine cancer.

Men who have erectile dysfunction or who are infertile should avoid this herb because licorice may reduce testosterone levels.

Internal use is not recommended for those using corticosteroids.

Women who are pregnant or breast feeding should avoid licorice root uses due to possible licorice side effects.

Refrain from taking licorice root if you're on diuretics or have hypothyroidism.

Large amounts of "real" licorice candy - 250 to 1,000 grams may cause visual disturbances.

People who are on oral contraceptives should discuss the use of licorice root to their physician to avoid any possible licorice root side effects.

If you're taking any kind of OTC (over-the-counter) drug, suffer from a health condition, or are on any type of medications, it is highly recommended that you speak with a physician before using licorice root supplements. This helps ensure the safe use of this herb.

One last noteworthy comment - licorice is available as capsules, extracts, tinctures, teas, lozenges, ointments, and as the whole root or its juice. In addition, it is available in a deglycyrrhizinated licorice, or DGL form, in which the glycyrrhizin has been removed. Dosages vary according to the form and condition being treated.


Herbal Guide

For your convenience we added a link to our herbal guide web-page should you have an interest in learning more about different types of herbs and their therapeutic powers. Click here.


To Your Health!

The Editors



Much more than Licorice Root Side Effects can be found at our Herbal Guide web-page

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