Dr. Nicole Sundene, NMD
Has something destroyed your house, life, job, family, or soul? Licorice shall restore you!
The brilliant thing about herbal medicine is that it has restorative adrenal adaptogen herbs to repair weary tattered souls. When I worked in regular family medicine antidepressants were really all we had to offer patients suffering from too much stress. Sleeping pills for insomnia, ADHD medications for fatigue, and valium for anxiety.
What I have learned later on from practicing Naturopathy is that many of these depressed, blue, sad, exhausted, and blah feeling patients simply needed a solid adrenal adaptogen such as licorice root!
I love licorice as an adrenal adaptogen herb because it is also a potent antiviral. This root is one of our most powerful anti-inflammatory herbs. When we need to cut inflammation and revive patients that are weak, dilapidated, running LOW with low immunity, low blood pressure, low mood, and low cortisol adrenal hormone levels... licorice is the perfect herb!
Especially when there are any digestive issues going on such as heartburn, ulcers, acid reflux, constipation, IBS, liver disease, hepatitis, and cirrhosis licorice root is the perfect herb. Licorice is safe to use as a demulcent healing herb similar to the slippery nature of aloe vera. It helps heal and soothe irritated membranes in the digestive and respiratory tracts.
Licorice is an amazing cough syrup which is why I had to preserve the licorice I used in my Herbal Gingerbread house we destroyed on Instagram, and turn it into an herbal syrup. Since I use Stevia to sweeten my syrup and keep them low carb, I freeze them instead of preserving them in sugar.
First I let the syrup cool and then freeze it in ice cube trays. Once you make your licorice ice cubes you can store them for a rainy day in the freezer. To use simply pop a couple cubes into your hot tea or coffee to boost it with nature's best steroid. Licorice is often akin to giving patients a Medrol dose pack. So if you do not feel well on steroids you should discuss the use of licorice with me or your own Naturopathic Doctor.
As an Autoimmune specialist, I use licorice for many of my patients to help naturally reduce their inflammation. For autoimmune hormone conditions like Hashimotos, it can also be very balancing and supportive to the immune system. Immune support herbs are "immune modulating" so in a hyper autoimmune state such as what I have, Lupus, or other autoimmune diseases I commonly treat like scleroderma, MCTD, Sjogren's, Hashimoto's, and Rheumatoid Arthritis this herb can really be helpful. Although we should always monitor our autoimmune patients when implementing new treatments to ensure they are working properly and not causing "Paradoxical Reactions" as many of us often have strange reactions to foods and medications.
For patients that are exhausted with prolonged coughs from asthma, bronchitis, or pneumonia this is an excellent restorative herb for their lungs and energy levels. But this powerful medicine is not without side effects and should not be used by patients with high blood pressure or on any medications. I also generally do not recommend using licorice with any medications unless you are working with a skilled Naturopathic Doctor trained in Integrative Medicine. Because licorice is a powerful medicine it has more herb-drug interactions than most herbs.
Licorice is also contraindicated for patients that have overactive adrenal glands such as in Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH), PCOS, and stage 1 adrenal fatigue. Please do not take licorice if in adrenal excess, you instead need a calming adrenal adaptogen herb for your type of hormone imbalance such as ashwagandha.
Licorice may be overstimulating for patients with PTSD, although many of my PTSD patients report improvements by taking small amounts in the morning. Do not take licorice at bedtime or it will cause insomnia. You want to use herbal medicines that boost the adrenal glands in the morning when the glands are the most active and need the most support. At bedtime, a calming sedative tea is generally better to quiet the mind.
If you have been feeling depressed, fatigued, or blue and need help getting your energy, mood, and attitude back on track simply pop over to the SCHEDULE page of my website to treat yourself to a Naturopathic visit. We can easily rely on modern insurance-based lab metrics to test your hormones, adrenals, thyroid, and vitamins so we can put together a custom herbal medicine plan based on your specific constitution, symptoms, and lab numbers.
Dr. Nicole Sundene, NMD
Dr. Sundene is a Naturopathic Doctor in Scottsdale, Arizona, and is a Female Hormone Expert in Women's Health and Bioidentical Hormones. She specializes in Holistic Women's Health for Menopause, Thyroid, Hashimotos, PMS, Perimenopause, Autoimmune, Postpartum, Chronic Fatigue, Depression, Anxiety, Food Allergies, Digestion, Dermatology, Acne, Psoriasis, Eczema, and Adrenal Hormonal Conditions. In 1999 she began working for a Hormone Doctor prior to starting Naturopathic Medical School. With over 23 years of experience in both Prescription and Natural women's health and hormones, she presents to women the best-integrated health solutions for their Chronic Disease.
She has been an Herbalist for over 28 years and enjoys teaching women how to use herbs to balance their hormones, nutrition and optimize their health. Dr. Sundene relies on blood testing for her hormone metrics. The hormone testing is covered per the patient's insurance plan (not Medicaid) and conducted at certain points in the woman's menstrual cycle. To learn more about Hormone Testing for Women Visit: Bioidentical Hormones. Follow Dr. Sundene on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for more tips on Women's Health, Female Hormones, and Naturopathy!