Licorice Root Side Effects & Warnings

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Should not be used in pregnancy. It causes increased production of aldosterone, a hormone that regulates the salt and water balance of the body, resulting in a rise of blood pressure.

Do not use licorice root if you have diabetes, edema, heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease, severe menstrual problems, glaucoma or history of stroke.

May cause headaches, elevated blood pressure, hypertension, lethargy, upset stomach, diarrhea, facial puffiness, ankle swelling, edema (fluid retention), grogginess, weakness or shortness of breath.

Should not be used on a daily basis for more than seven days in a row as it can affect the body's electrolyte balance, retaining sodium but depleting the body of potassium. This in turn can lead to high blood pressure and edema. Consult your practitioner for advice.

Monitoring of blood pressure and electrolytes and increasing potassium intake are suggested.

Licorice candy does not offer the same benefits as preparations made from the root, but can cause an increase in blood pressure.

Women who suffer from PMS should not use licorice during PMS time due to its ability to cause water retention or bloating.

Licorice is contraindicated for people with potassium problems. Physician's Desk Reference

Licorice may increase the risk of bleeding or potentiate the effects of warfarin therapy.

Heavy licorice (glycyrrhizin) consumption has been associated with shorter gestation. Heavy glycyrrhizin exposure was associated with preterm delivery and may be a novel marker of this condition.

Licorice may interfere with either digoxin pharmacodynamically or with digoxin monitoring.

Licorice can offset the pharmacological effect of spironolactone.


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