Liquorice Root

Source Liquorice Root is the dried root ofGlycyrrhiza uralensis Fisch. orG. glabra L., (Fam. Leguminosae).

Producing Areas Inner Mongolia, Shanxi, Gansu, Xinjiang, etc.

Properties Sweet, Neutral

Channels Spleen, Stomach


  • Invigorates vital energy
    For syndrome of spleen-stomach deficiency; for those with deficiency of heart energy or heart-yang manifested as shortness of breath, palpitation, chest pain and arrhythmia.
  • Clears away heat and toxic material
    For serious heat-syndrome such as skin infection, sore throat, etc. or drug and food poisoning.
  • Eliminates phlegm and relieves cough
    For various types of cough and dyspnea.
  • Relieves spasms and alleviates pain
    For spasms and pain of the abdomen and leg, arthralgia of wind-dampness-cold type and peptic ulcer.

Usage and Dosage

  • 3 – 6g is used in decoction for oral use.
  • Crude Gancao: For pyocutaneous disease, sore throat, cough due to lung-heat.
  • Roasted Gancao: For deficiency of the spleen and stomach, palpitations, spasms and pain.

Notes It is incompatible with Gansui, Daji (Knoxia valerianoides Thorel et Pitard), Seaweed and Yuanhua (Lilac Daphne Flower Bud). Contraindicated for patient with excessive dampness in the stomach and spleen, fullness of epigastric abdomen and vomiting. Not to be taken for a long time as it might cause hypertension and edema.

The root is cylindrical, 30 – 100cm long, 0.6 – 3.5cm in diameter. The surface is reddish brown, dark brown or grey brown, has grooves, long crosswise pores and sparse thin root marks. The fibroid broken surface is yellowish white and powdery with obvious concentric circles, radial texture and fractures. It is heavy and solid. It is light in nature, with a distinctive sweet flavour.

It is thick, hard and woody. The broken surface is grey brown and rough.

The root and rhizome are hard and solid. The surface is smooth, grey brown in colour with tiny pores.

Keep in a well-ventilated and dry place. Protect it from mould and moths.

Description of Quality Herb
The good one has reddish brown fine tight skin, hard and solid mass, yellowish white powdery broken surface, sweet flavour. Gancao is better than the two others.

Rice with Green Bean and Liquorice

Rehydrates the body and quenches thirst, eliminates heatiness and detoxifies.

Fresh liquorice root 10g, green beans 100g, rice 100g.

1.Rinse the beans and rice under running water. Slice the liquorice.
2.Place rice, green beans and liquorice root in a pot, add water and cook as normal rice.

Cuttlefish and Liquorice Soup

Eliminates heatiness and detoxifies, benefitsyin and nourishes the blood.

Fresh liquorice root 10g, cuttlefish 100g, white sugar 30g, amaranth 100g.

1.Rinse and slice the liquorice root. Rinse the cuttlefish and cut into cubes. Rinse and slice the amaranth.
2.Place liquorice root and cuttlefish in a pot with 300ml of water.
3.Bring to a rolling boil, then simmer for 25 minutes. Add the amaranth and sugar, cook till done, and serve.