Licorice or Liquorice is the root of Glycyrrhiza glabra . The liquorice plant is a legume that is native to southern Europe and parts of Asia.
Much of the sweetness in liquorice comes from glycyrrhizin, which has a sweet taste, 30–50 times the sweetness of sugar. The sweetness is very different from sugar, being less instant, tart, and lasting longer.
Licorice which grows in deep valleys with full sun and harvested in the autumn two to three years after planting. Countries producing liquorice include Iran, Afghanistan, the People’s Republic of China, Pakistan, Iraq, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Turkey.
Licorice used as a flavoring factor for tobacco.
Liquorice provides tobacco products with a natural sweetness and a distinctive flavor that blends readily with the natural and imitation flavoring components employed in the tobacco industry. It represses harshness and is not detectable as liquorice by the consumer. Tobacco flavorings such as liquorice also make it easier to inhale the smoke by creating bronchodilators, which open up the lungs. Chewing tobacco requires substantially higher levels of liquorice extract as emphasis on the sweet flavor appears highly desirable.
Food and candy
Liquorice flavour found in a liquorice candies or sweets.
In the Netherlands where liquorice candy (“drop”) is one of the most popular forms of sweets, . Mixing it with ammonium chloride (‘salmiak’) is also popular. The most popular liquorice, known in the Netherlands as zoute drop (salty liquorice), actually contains very little salt, i.e., sodium. The salty taste is probably due to ammonium chloride and the blood pressure raising effect is due to glycyrrhizin. Strong, salty candies are popular in Scandinavia.
Liquorice is popular in Italy (particularly in the South) and Spain in its natural form.
The compound glycyrrhizin (or glycyrrhizic acid), found in liquorice, that proposed as being useful for liver protection in tuberculosis therapy.
Glycyrrhizin has also demonstrated antiviral, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, and blood-pressure increasing effects in vitro and in vivo.
Liquorice has also demonstrated promising activity in one clinical trial, when applied topically, against atopic dermatitis. Additionally liquorice has also proven itself effective in treating hyperlipidaemia (a high amount of fats in the blood). Liquorice has also demonstrated efficacy in treating inflammation-induced skin hyperpigmentation. Liquorice may also be useful in preventing neurodegenerative disorders and cavities.
Anti-ulcer, laxative, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, antitumour and expectorant properties of liquorice have noted.
Liquorice may be useful in conventional and naturopathic medicine for both mouth ulcers and peptic ulcers.
Uses of Licorice Extract
The uses of licorice extract are many. It is most commonly used in candy making, but is also used in the treatments of conditions such as sore throats, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and skin diseases such as psoriasis. It also is used in nonfood and nonmedicinal ways. For example, it is one of the foaming agents in fire extinguishers.
Benefits of Licorice
Licorice extract has several benefits. As an herbal supplement it is said to boost the immune system, aid in the function of antioxidants, lower cholesterol and even thin the blood. It is also used as a natural remedy for controlling the symptoms of menstruation and menopause. As a medicine, can be included in items such as cough drops, or it can be made into tea.
Using Licorice in Tobacco
Much liquorice production goes toward flavouring, sweetening and conditioning tobacco products. Liquorice adds a mellow, sweet woody flavour and enhances the taste of tobacco. The burning liquorice also generates some toxins found in the smoke, and the glycyrrhizin expands the airways, which allows users to inhale more smoke.