LicoriceLicorice root has been used for thousands of years for upper respiratory, digestive, and urinary tract infections or irritation. It has anti-viral, antiinflammatory, immune-activating, demulcent, and expectorant properties and is used for ulcers, bronchitis, gastritis, irritable bowel and bowel inflammation, and adrenal insufficiency. Licorice tea is also given for digestive weakness, especially when accompanied by fatigue and shortness of breath. In Chinese medicine, licorice (Glycyrriza uralensis) is said to replenish vital energy, moisten the lungs, strengthen the digestion, and modulate the effect of other herbs. Licorice tea is often recommended to heal gastric ulcers.
Licorice has proven antiviral powers and is useful in formulas for viral infections like HIV or hepatitis. Other species used include G. lepidota from North America, G. uralensis from Europe, and G. glabra and G. echinata from Asia.