Health Benefits of Licorice (Mulethi)

Mulethi ‘licorice’ is known as mulethi churna and Yashtimadhu, is an intergeral part of Ayurveda due to its immense health benefits. 

Botanically licorice,  a herbaceous perennial plant, is known as Glycyrrhiza Glabra and it is its sweet roots, that are used for therapeutic purposes. 

Besides its medicinal properties, mulethi is also used as a flavouring agent.


Nutritional Value

The fragrance of Mulethi is attributed to a variable combination of compounds, out of which anethole (anise camphor) makes up 3% of the entire plant. The majority of the sweetness is derived from a substance known as glycyrrhizin. Glycyrrhizin is approximately 30 to 50 times sweeter than sugar. 

The roots of mulethi contain Isoflavane glabridin, an anti inflammatory and anti oxidation compound, that regulates glucose stress. 

A 14 gm of licorice contains 52 calories. It also contains 13 gm carbohydrates, 7 mg sodium, 9.8 gm sugar, and 0.3 gm fibre. It does not contain any fat and proteins.


Possible Health Benefits of Mulethi… 

1/4. Boosts digestive system

1. The ulcer healing property of mulethi rectifies the gastric mucosa and decreases ulceration. Carbenoxolone synthesized from glycyrrhizin is responsible for healing gastric and mouth ulcers.

2. The antacid property of Mulethi decreases the free and total HCL levels in the stomach. It is helpful in acute and chronic gastritis.

3. Glycyrrhizic acid present in mulethi is known to suppress H.pylori bacteria and prevents its growth.

4. The anti-inflammatory property possessed by mulethi reduces the inflammation of the mouth, stomach linings, and intestine. 

5. The anti-flatulent property of licorice roots decreases gas formation in the alimentary canal, thus decreasing flatulence, abdominal distension, and bloating. 

6. The active compounds of mulethi, glycyrrhizin, and carbenoxolone help relieve constipation. It stimulates the bowel movements and acts as a mild laxative. 

7. Licorice root is effective in treating several digestive complaints such as, stomach ulcers, gastritis, acid reflux, food poisoning, indigestion, inflammation of the stomach, heartburn, constipation, and acidity. 


2/4. Boosts immunity

1. The root extracts of mulethi possess anti-microbial property which accelerates the production of lymphocytes and macrophage thus, enhancing the defense mechanism & preventing microbial infections. It further helps in decreasing autoimmune complications and immune-related allergic reactions.

2. The general debility, weakness, and fatigue are reduced by the bio-active ingredients of mulethi. It also boosts the vitality of the body, increases the general stamina and energy levels of the body.

3. Mulethi boosts the immune system thus, prevents the body from being affected by harmful diseases.


3/4. Regulates hormones

1. The phytoestrogenic compounds present in mulethi are beneficial in hormonal imbalance complaints in women such as moods swings, hot flashes, exhaustion, menopause symptoms, etc.

2. Mulethi’s cortisol production which affects the brain reduces menstrual cramps and regulates menstrual flow.

3. In nursing mothers, mulethi regulates body hormones and helps in the secretion of milk.


4/4. Other possible benefits…

Mulethi is also effective in treating chronic inflammatory diseases, maintaining the respiratory tract health, treating skin ailments, protecting the liver, reducing serum cholesterol levels, preventing plaque formation in the blood vessels, decreasing throat inflammation, lowering the incidence of sore throat. 

Certain other benefits are treating eczema, preventing hair fall and premature greying of hairs,  decreasing blemishes and dark spots, reducing muscle cramps, reducing abdominal fat accumulation, decreasing elevated liver enzymes, treating diabetes, assisting in cancer treatment, improving memory capacity, boosting spermatogenesis, and quality of sperm.

A key Ayurveda herb, mulethi has anti inflammatory and anti oxidation compounds. 


How to use Mulethi?

Mulethi can be consumed in various ways, some of them are as follows:-

  • As tea.
  • As powder.
  • As supplements.
  • As liquid extract.
  • Chew mulethi root.
  • As mulethi kadha or decoction.
  • As sweetener in candies and beverages.

How to make Mulethi powder at home?

Take fresh roots from the mulethi plant.

To remove the soil and impurities, wash them thoroughly. 

Cut the roots into pieces.

Let it dry under direct sunlight. Keep it for a week, under the sun.

In a grinder, ground the dried root into a fine powder.

To remove any extra moisture, air-dry the powder.

Sieve the powder to remove fine impurities.

Store it in an airtight container in a cool place.


Mulethi Adrak Chai | Liquorice Ginger tea

Take 3 Cups of water, simmer ginger and liquorice root for 3 to 5 minutes.

Add tea bags, let it simmer for another 3 minutes.

Add milk and sweetener, according to taste. Let it simmer for a few more minutes.

Bring it to a  boil. Serve it hot.

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