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«Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra). Main activities: secretolitic and expectorant; emollient; antiphlogistic and spasmolytic; antiseptic and wound healing.
Therapeutic use: catarrhal forms of the upper respiratory tract; gastritis and gastroduodenal ulcer.
The anti-inflammatory action (of glycyrrhetinic acid) has been demonstrated in several experimental models. It acts indirectly by enhancing corticoids, resulting in an increase of cortisol and aldosterone. …
It also exerts an antiviral effect (for probable induction and stimulation in the production of interferon), has immuno-stimulant, antibacterial, antihepatotoxic, antioxidant and wound healing properties.
It also shows a strong antispasmodic activity (connected with the presence of flavonoids). This activity is exploited in the formulation of herbal teas or laxative preparations (anthraquinone herbs), where it limits its side effects.
Also interesting is its use in epigastric swelling, in digestive sluggishness, in bloating, meteorism and dysmenorrhoea.
It is commonly used as a flavour corrector, thanks to its high sweetening power - 50 times as much as that of sucrose [1].
Externally it is used as an analgesic in diseases of the oral cavity (canker sores), in conjunctivitis, … to solve or mitigate irritative, ulcerative and allergic diseases of the skin and accessible mucous membranes (dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis …).
It is particularly suitable for dry skin and sensitive skin, in after-bath and after-sun soothing products.
Some of its root components are tyrosinase inhibitors, which makes licorice a potential skin lightener » [1].  

«Pharmacological studies conducted on animals and in vitro have shown that Licorice has anti-inflammatory, anti-ulcer, glucocorticoid, mineralocorticoid, oestrogen-like, immuno-modulating, antitumoural, hepato-protective, antiviral (HSV, varicella, HIV) and antibacterial properties. lt is antioxidant.
It has proven effective for topical use in stomatitis, in the prevention of tooth decay, in cold sores and in chronic eczema. It has also proven beneficial in the treatment of the polycystic ovary syndrome, in chronic fatigue syndrome, in orthostatic hypotension, in chronic viral hepatitis type B, in the prevention of chemotherapy side effects … and atherosclerosis. It has expectorant properties. It inhibits prostaglandins with an action similar to that of cortisone, … to improve fertility » [2].

[1] Enrica Campanini, Dizionario di fitoterapia e piante medicinali, Tecniche Nuove.
[2] Francesco Perugini Billi, Fitoterapia, Edizioni Junior.
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