Health benefits and medicinal values of liquorice (Mulethi)

Liquorice or mulethi has been used for centuries in Indian, Chinese and Western medicine as a home remedy. Find out how you can use this powerful root to treat everything from bronchitis to jaundice and ulcers.

Liquorice has been used in Ayurvedic, Western and Chinese folk medicine for centuries. Here are the health benefits of liquorice, commonly known as mulethi or Yashtimadhu in India.

A treatment for bronchitis

Mulethi is most commonly used in India for bronchial troubles. This is because of its highly anti-inflammatory properties. The root contains glycyrrhizin, which is what gives the root its sweetness. This natural sweetener, after hydrolysis, releases something called glycyrrhetinic acid. This acid has strong effects against inflammation, and these effects are said to be as powerful as that of the steroid cortisones.

Bronchitis is the inflammation of the air passages between the nose, the mouth and the lungs. For relief during bronchitis, traditional Indian medicine prescribes 2 tsp crushed liquorice root and 2 tsp linseed. These should be boiled in two teacups of water for 10 minutes. Strain and sweeten with 4 tablespoons of honey and take a teaspoon of the syrup twice or thrice a day for quick relief.

Soothes sore throat & common colds

Similarly, mulethi can help ease the symptoms of a sore throat. Simply suck or chew on a piece of the raw liquorice root.

While common colds do not have a cure, liquorice can help you fight congestion and other symptoms of the flu. It has been used in Western home remedies for colds and flu. Boil a teaspoon each of liquorice and cinnamon with a tablespoon of ginger paste in a teacup of water for 10 minutes. Filter this, add a teaspoon of honey and drink.

Stabilises bilirubin levels in jaundice patients

The use of liquorice for the treatment of jaundice was known in ancient India and China. It is known to be a liver detoxifier. There is some evidence to suggest that liquorice even nullifies the effects of liver damage from alcohol.

To treat jaundice, you can use mulethi powder or make fine powder from the roots. Crush 1 teaspoon each of liquorice root, chicory seeds (kasni seeds) and rock salt. Take a teaspoon of this mixture twice every day with water to get bilirubin levels back to normal.

A herbal cure for low blood pressure

Since liquorice raises blood pressure, you can safely use it for low B.P. and fatigue. Soak a ¾ cup of crushed liquorice root in four cups of cold water and let it stand for about two hours. Bring this mixture quickly to a boil and let it steep for five minutes. Add this to your bathwater and you should feel rejuvenated after your bath.

You can also take it orally but since it is very effective in raising blood pressure, it is best to take it orally only under the advice of an Ayurvedic practitioner who can help you monitor your blood pressure as well.

Relieves constipation and makes you go

For constipation, mix a teaspoon of the finely powdered mulethi with a teaspoon of jaggery. Add a cup of water and drink the concoction.

Reduces inflammation in the mouth

If your mouth is inflamed or if you have mouth ulcers, soak a tablespoon of crushed mulethi root in 2 teacups of water for 2 to 3 hours and gargle with the water as often as you can.

Other ailments liquorice can relieve include aching eyes, peptic ulcers, muscle pain, bad breath, dry cough, corns, wounds, and chronic joint pains.

  • Caution:

    Liquorice is known to interact with some medication. Only take it with your doctor's advice, if you also take other medications. You should not take liquorice for extended periods or take if it you have kidney diseases, high blood pressure, hormone-sensitive illnesses, hypokalemia, heart disease, are pregnant or breastfeeding, or are on prescribed blood thinners.

Article by Juana
Juana is a freelance writer, with years of experience, creating content for varied online portals. She holds a degree in English Literature and has worked as a teacher and as a soft skill trainer. An avid reader, she writes on a variety of topics ranging from health, travel, education and personality development.

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