This is a formulation of Chinese licorice root (also known as glycyrrhizin extract). It’s widely used in Japan and it has been the subject of clinical studies there–read some details below. Please note that this supplement should not be used if you have high blood pressure or a heart condition.
See also the NYBC entry at GL-2
GL-2 Capsules (Zhang) Each bottle, 60 capsules, each capsule, 500 mg of a proprietary blend of Chinese licorice root (gan-cao) and Paeonia lactiflora PALL. root (chi-shao).
Suggested use is to take 1 capsule twice per day.
Glycyrrhizin is an extract of licorice and has been used extensively in Japan for years. It is used there to treat ulcers and other inflammatory disorders and is a therapy with a variety of effects. Several clinical studies in HIV+ people with hemophilia and others have been conducted indicating clinical stabilization of disease in recipients over 7 or more years of use. While T-cells don’t increase, progression to AIDS is significantly slowed for some. Glycyrrhizin is also an excellent liver tonic and is used to treat not only viral hepatitis but other liver disorders. It also seems to help those with impaired kidney function (particularly the IV formulation). It operates directly against lipid-enveloped viruses (likes herpes viruses) as well as several other pathogens such as TB, staph infections, MAI and others. It affects different pathways of cellular function (different mechanisms of action), including anenzyme called protein kinase C (PKC) which HIV uses for its growth. (PKC is affected by vitamin E as well). In its HIV fighting capacity, there is evidence to show that it inhibits chronically HIV-infected cells (like macrophages), stops clumping of cells (syncytia formation) and interferes with cell-to-cell and virus-to-cell binding. It acts as an antioxidant, reducing damaging inflammatory chemicals like prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), leukotriene C, excess cortisol and other reactive oxygen species. In terms of cytokines, it helps reduce pathologically-elevated levels of TNF and acid-labile interferon while encouraging IL-2 and interferon-gamma production, as well as MHC-I expression.
WARNINGS: Please remember that persons with a history of high blood pressure or a heart condition should not take licorice extracts. It is also important while using these extracts to monitor your potassium level as well as blood pressure. Eat bananas, peaches, dates, raisins, apricots. Potatoes also have a lot of potassium. Please let your health care provider know if you are using these products.
Licorice products can be effective in controlling the dry, hacking coughs due to colds and generating the “productive” cough that helps promote the healing process.
Licorice products have been known to deplete Potassium, an essential mineral, from the human body. A diet containing fruits and vegetables should be eaten when taking this supplement.
Warning: Do not take if you have or suspect you have high blood pressure. Do not use if you have a heart condition.