Mulethi refers to the herb liquorice which is scientifically known as Glycyrrhiza glabra. The plant is native to the countries of Asia and Europe, including India. It is a perennial herb and is used as a flavouring agent in the Middle East and Europe. The leaves of the plant are pinnate and the flowers are whitish-blue to purple in colour. The fruits contain seeds and are like pods. Mulethi is mostly found in India, Italy, Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan.
The roots of the plant are of high value because of their richly flavoured and sweet odour. The plant has got its name Glycyrrhiza glabra due to the presence of glycyrrhizin, which is a natural compound responsible for the sweetness. Glycyrrhiza comes from Greek words ‘glykys’ which means ‘sweet’ and ‘rhiza’ which means root and refers to the very sweet-tasting root. In Chinese medicine system, it is known as a “peacemaker”. The herb is currently cultivated and grown in Spain, Germany, Russia, England, Spain and France due to its extensive use in food and aroma industry.
Mulethi has a special type of root system and its roots are called taproots. They are very long and are deep rooted into the ground. Wooden stolon from liquorice plant is gathered and cut into pieces, which gives commercial liquorice. The roots may be unpeeled or peeled that on breaking reveals yellow coloured interior and sweet smell.
Traditionally it was used for rejuvenation, managing jaundice and other ailments in China and Egypt. It was also used as an expectorant.
Liquorice possesses flavanane, glabrene and glabridin, glycyrrhizin, saponins. Liquiritigenin, liquirtin and isoliquertin are fractions of flavonoids for Mulethi including volatile oils such as, linalool, pentanol and hexanol.
Anethole is a main complex compound that provides scent and it is 3% part of the essential oil obtained from liquorice. It is also responsible for providing sweetness to the roots along with glycyrrhizin.
Glycyrrhiza glabra has many health beneficial medicinal properties, such as anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-malarial, anti-hyperglycaemic, anti-spasmodic, anti-ulcer, antiviral, anti-bacterial, hepatoprotective and antifungal properties.
Benefits of Mulethi
The therapeutic effects of liquorice make it a part of Daily Calm Tea and Daily Boost Tea manufactured by Preserva Wellness.