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Herbal Supplements

Peer Reviewed

The Basics
Licorice derivatives have been used to cleanse the colon, relieve bronchitis (increase fluidity of mucus), kill staph and strep infections, control candida, relieve rheumatism and arthritis (inflammatory disorders), promote adrenal gland function, and stimulate the production of interferon. Deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL) may prevent ulcers by increasing the number of mucus secreting cells in the digestive tract.

Licorice is available in the following forms: peeled root, unpeeled dried root, powdered root, and liquid and dry extracts. Note that DGL (deglycyrrhizinated licorice), a preferred extract, has had compounds harmful to the adrenal glands removed.

Guidelines and Cautions
Always follow package directions.

Do not take licorice for more than seven days in a row. Licorice poisoning is possible.

Do not use licorice if any of the following conditions exist: diabetes, glaucoma, heart disease, kidney or liver disorder, high blood pressure, menstrual problems, or history of stroke.

Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use licorice.

Do not take licorice if taking thiazide diuretics.

As with any vitamin, herb, or supplement, always consult a medical professional prior to incorporating these substances into your diet.

Updated on: 02/06/10
Richard G. Fessler, MD, PhD
Many patients report feeling improvement in their general well being taking dietary supplements. The Editorial Board of SpineUniverse.com, however, cannot endorse such products since most lack peer reviewed scientific validation of their claims. In most cases an appropriate diet and a "multiple vitamin" will provide the necessary dietary supplements for most individuals. Prior to taking additional dietary supplements it is recommended that patients consult with their personal physician to discuss their specific supplement requirements.