Metabolic Health
Reviewed by

Shifa Fathima

Mulethi : A natural ingredient to manage diabetes

Diabetes, a common illness that affects a large section of the population, is characterised by elevated blood glucose levels in the body. It occurs when the pancreas cannot secrete enough insulin or the insulin secreted from the pancreas works inefficiently. In both these cases, the body fails to metabolise glucose, thus leading to diabetes. Diabetes, in turn, leads to several other complications such as kidney failure, vision problems and even heart damage.

Mulethi, commonly known as Liquorice in English, is a perennial herbaceous plant native to Southern Europe and western Asia. Liquorice roots are good for diabetes. It has been used in herbal formulations since mediaeval times to treat various diseases. Mulethi is packed with anti-diabetic properties that can maintain blood sugar levels in the body.

Is Mulethi good for diabetes?

Mulethi is considered to be good for diabetes. Liquorice root contains bioactive compounds known as glycyrrhizin and glycyrrhizic acids, which are also aromatic compounds. The glycyrrhizin present in the roots of Liquorice is 30-40 times sweeter than sucrose. Due to its sweetness, Liquorice roots are used to prepare beverages, confectionaries and other bakery items. The aroma from brewing the roots of Liquorice can be compared with fennel or anise because of the presence of similar bioactive compounds in them.

Apart from glycyrrhizin and glycyrrhizic acids, Liquorice roots also contain several compounds such as monosaccharides, disaccharides, starch, proteins, amino acids, essential oil, sterols and other secondary metabolites like flavonoids and saponins. Since there is a sweetish taste of Liquorice, mainly due to the combination of sucrose and glycyrrhizin, it can be used as a substitute for sugar.

Benefits of Mulethi for diabetes

Mulethi has great potential for use in treating diabetes due to its anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory properties. This is due to the presence of a powerful ingredient called amorfrutins. Amorfrutins have been found to control blood sugar levels in people with diabetes and also help reverse diabetes. Other diabetes-related illnesses can also be managed by the use of Mulethi as it is a good source of antioxidants.

Apart from treating diabetes, it has antimicrobial and antiviral properties, which can be used to treat several other infections. The benefits and potential uses of Mulethi include:

To treat sore throat – Due to the expectorant properties of Liquorice, it can be used to treat sore throat, bronchitis and irritation. It helps to ease coughing by removing the mucus in the chest, which blocks the airways.

To treat heartburn - Liquorice is effective in treating heartburn and stomach problems. It helps to relieve flatulence and nausea. It improves the proper functioning of the stomach.

It aids in skin breakouts – Since Liquorice has antibacterial and antiviral properties, it can treat skin conditions such as eczema and acne. 

It helps treat peptic or gastric ulcers- Peptic ulcers are a common health concern that mainly affect the stomach, oesophagus and small intestine. These ulcers are caused by the bacteria found in the gut. The glycyrrhizin present in the root extracts of Liquorice can be used to treat peptic ulcers.

It can be used to treat tuberculosis – The bacteria inside the lungs is responsible for tuberculosis. The much-needed immunity in patients with tuberculosis can be boosted by taking Liquorice.

Liquorice can be used in the treatment of chronic hepatitis – Liquorice has antiviral properties, and hepatitis is caused due to a virus in the liver. Hence, Liquorice can be used to retard the viral replication required for spreading hepatitis. The antioxidant property of Liquorice can reduce the generation of free radicals, further stopping cell damage.

It can be used to treat infertility – Liquorice is quite beneficial in increasing the sperm count and motility and thus helps in the treatment of infertility problems in men.

Liquorice has anti-cancer properties – Recent studies suggest that the anti-cancer properties of Liquorice either slow down or prevent cell growth in skin, breast and prostate cancer. 

It protects against cavities in teeth – The antibacterial property of Liquorice protects the teeth against bacteria that cause cavities.

It can help in weight loss – Gaining weight is a major cause of diabetes. Liquorice root extracts can lower the overall body mass index (BMI) and helps in weight loss. 

It can reduce symptoms associated with menopause – Liquorice root can be used to treat hot flashes during menopause.

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How can you use Mulethi in your daily diet?

Mulethi is a popular herbal supplement used to treat various medical conditions. It has many health benefits which are clinically proven. It should be taken in small doses for a short period of time. The following are the 4 ways by which one can add Mulethi to their daily diet:

Mulethi or Liquorice roots can be ingested directly for stomach ailments, arthritis, eczema, ulcers etc.

It can be added to lukewarm water and used for gargling to treat bad breath and mouth sores.

It can be used as a natural sweetener in various desserts, custards, ice creams, savoury items and many more.

Liquorice tea can be added to the diet. To prepare Liquorice tea, one has to add Liquorice roots to boiling water and allow it to boil for 20 minutes. Including Mulethi tea in our diet can help us lead a healthy lifestyle.

Bottomline

Liquorice root has been used for thousands of years to treat various ailments in our body, including respiratory and digestive disorders. Liquorice has potent antimicrobial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The benefits provided to our bodies are incomparable. Comprehensive studies are still being conducted on Liquorice to know its other uses.

Mulethi has proven beneficial for many ailments in our body, and it should not be consumed daily or over consumed. Before taking Liquorice, one should consult a health expert to know more about its benefits.

FAQs

Can we consume Mulethi daily?

Ans. No, Mulethi should not be consumed daily as it may lead to hypertension, renal failure and other such health complications.

What herbs help to control diabetes?

Ans. Barberry, rosemary, and oregano are some herbs that can be used to control diabetes.

Who should not take Mulethi?

Ans. Mulethi should not be consumed by young children, pregnant women and nursing mothers.

References:

https://enjoyhealthylifeforever.blogspot.com/2020/05/Mulethi-natural-ingredient-to-cure.html?m=1

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/Liquorice-root#bottom-line

https://m.timesofindia.com/life-style/food-news/Mulethi-a-natural-ingredient-to-cure-diabetes/articleshow/68093091.cms

https://www.wikihow.com/Use-Mulethi?amp=1

References

  • https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/food-news/mulethi-a-natural-ingredient-to-cure-diabetes/articleshow/68093091.cms

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