Have you always been interested in the mood boosting effects of licorice, but shied away from licorice extracts in the past due to the potential for less than desirable effects? Then isoliquiritigenin is what you’ve been looking for! Traditional licorice extracts contain many different compounds, amongst which is glycyrrhizin, which produces undesirable cardiovascular effects. There are also a variety of mood boosting compounds in licorice root, but one of the most potent mood boosting compounds is isoliquiritigenin. Thus, in order to maximize the mood boosting potential of licorice root whilst doing away with the undesirable effects we decided to isolate pure isoliquiritigenin!*
Isoliquiritigenin produces a very comprehensive mood boosting effect, which is primarily being produced by its GABA-A and GABA-B modulating properties.* These GABAergic effects are also accompanied by monoamine oxidase inhibition, NMDA antagonism and direct affinity towards dopamine D3 receptors. The collective effect is a very unique relaxing GABAergic profile, which is seemingly entirely devoid of lethargy.* This makes it an ideal candidate for dialing in a relaxed mind whilst still keeping focus and drive high throughout the day!* In fact, the effects actually remind us of an ultra-smooth and more mood boosting caffeine + L-theanine stack!* The mix of GABA-A and GABA-B affinities also make isoliquiritigenin great for relaxing our muscles.* Combine this with its inflammation modulating effects and isoliquiritigenin also becomes a powerful ally for pain management!*
Isoliquiritigenin is a unique flavonoid derived from the roots of Glycyrrhiza glabra, which most of us know as licorice root. Licorice has been used for centuries and is featured very prominently in traditional Chinese practices. In other countries around the world, licorice is used as a flavoring in candies or sometimes the roots themselves are even chewed on due to their pleasant sweet flavor. This sweet flavor is primarily being produced by glycyrrhizin, but unfortunately this compound has some negative cardiovascular effects. Due to this, licorice candy and traditional licorice extracts are often approached with caution. With one of the traditional uses of licorice being a component of mood boosting formulations, we set out to find out what exactly in licorice root is producing these mood elevating effects. Little did we know, we’ve actually always been able to see this compound! If you take a close look at licorice roots as displayed in Figure 1. below, you will see that they have a bright yellow color.
Figure 1. A picture of Glycyrrhiza glabra roots clearly showing a bright yellow color. This yellow color is produced by flavonoids, such as isoliquiritigenin, which are often bright yellow in color.
Many flavonoids are bright yellow in color. For example, our 7,8-DHF or quercetin are both flavonoids and are a bright yellow in color! Isoliquiritigenin certainly is no exception and in its pure form is also bright yellow and likely one of the primary compounds responsible for the yellow color of licorice roots. Through our research, isoliquiritigenin also appears to be one of the primary mood boosting compounds in licorice root and it does not seem to share the same negative effects as glycyrrhizin! Once we made this discovery, we immediately set out to isolate this compound and were very happy with the effects when we started beta-testing pure isoliquiritigenin!*
When we first discovered isoliquiritigenin and started to really delve into its neuropharmacological profile, we quickly started to feel quite giddy! We haven’t come across such a pharmacologically interesting compound in a long time! First and foremost, this is perhaps one of the first natural compounds we have come across that has a significant GABA-B agonist effect.* This is something that we have been searching for for a long time because GABA-B activation produces very unique GABAergic effects. GABA-B activation tends to produce quite a bit of muscle relaxation but not an overt sense of mental relaxation. Instead, GABA-B activation tends to produce a very nice uplifted mood state. However, isoliquiritigenin also is a positive allosteric modulator for GABA-A receptors!* Collectively, the GABA-B activation and GABA-A positive allosteric modulator effects produce a very robust GABAergic effect which is great for relaxing.* Normally this type of GABAergic effects profile would be fairly lethargy inducing, however, isoliquiritigenin has some additional tricks up its sleeve!*
Just when we thought our giddiness couldn’t get more out of control, we also discovered that isoliquiritigenin has a direct agonist effect on dopamine D3 receptors.* The dopamine D3 receptor is highly involved in mood and even neuroplasticity. While it is hard to figure out exactly what role it plays in the overall effects of isoliquiritigenin, it appears that dopamine D3 activation may be contributing to isoliquiritigenin’s unique uplifting relaxing effect.* However, one of the reasons it is hard to determine the role dopamine D3 activation is playing here is because isoliquiritigenin also acts as a monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A) and monoamine oxidase B (MAO-B) inhibitor. MAO-A & B break down monoamine neurotransmitters such as dopamine, noradrenaline, and serotonin. Thus, by inhibiting both MAO-A & B with isoliquiritigenin, we would see a significant overall increase in monoamine neurotransmitters, which includes dopamine. Together with the dopamine D3 agonist effects, this means that isoliquiritigenin has a stimulating effect too. And just when we thought isoliquiritigenin couldn’t get any better, we also discovered that it is acting as an NMDA antagonist!*
At this point, you can likely start to grasp just how excited we were getting about isoliquiritigenin! We have relaxing effects being induced by GABA-A & B activation and NMDA antagonism which is contrasted with stimulating effects from MAO-A & B inhibition and dopamine D3 agonism. The end result is somewhat comparable to the contrast between stimulation and relaxation found in the classic caffeine + L-theanine stack.* However, in the case of isoliquiritigenin, the effects are much more geared towards mood elevation.* To us, it feels like the ultra-smooth and mood boosting version of caffeine + L-theanine!*
That’s just the mood boosting effects though and we got even more excited when we learned about the positive effects isoliquiritigenin can have on the gut.* Two of our favorite effects are mood elevation and gut health optimization.* Finding both of those effects in a single small-molecule compound was quite a discovery for us! Isoliquiritigenin has a wide range of effects on our gut microflora, but to break it down as simply as possible, it is acting like a potent pre-biotic.* This means that isoliquiritigenin can increase the diversity and level of positive probiotics in our gut.* This gut microflora enhancement effect may in fact also be contributing to isoliquiritigenin’s mood enhancing effects due to the involvement of the gut-brain axis on mood.* Furthermore, isoliquiritigenin can also help relax our gastrointestinal system, while providing a gastroprotective effect.* Collectively, it is easy to understand why licorice root has always been highly revered for its gastrointestinal effects because isoliquiritigenin checks a lot of gastrointestinal function boxes!*
Last but certainly not least, isoliquiritigenin also has a very unique effect on pain management.* This is due to an interplay between its GABA-B agonist effects which produces muscle relaxation and its NMDA antagonist effect which has a direct pain management effect.* Isoliquiritigenin also has a solid effect on modulating inflammation and oxidation levels, which together with the GABA-B agonist and NMDA antagonist effects, produces a very comprehensive pain management effect!*
Relaxation & Stress Stack: Isoliquiritigenin + PanaMAX Optimized Ginseng Capsules
One of our favorite uses for Isoliquiritigenin has been as a component of functionally relaxing stress management stacks. We tested out a few different combinations and one of our favorite combinations for stress and relaxation was Isoliquiritigenin stacked with our optimized Panax ginseng stack, PanaMAX. The effects on relaxation are still almost entirely devoid of lethargy and the level of stress resilience goes through the roof. This is an ideal stack if you have been under a great deal of stress and wish to find some mental quietness without getting tired!*
The Mood Support Stack: Isoliquiritigenin + Cognance Enhanced Bacopa Capsules
The mood effects of Isoliquiritigenin are very unique, just like the mood effects of Cognance! We find that stacking Isoliquiritigenin together with cognance leads to a very comprehensive and full bodied mood boosting effect that brings the best attributes of Isoliquiritigenin and Cognance to the forefront. In our experience, this is also a very fun mood stack and thus great for going on an adventure with. We personally love taking this stack before going on a hike!*
The Pain Management Stack: Isoliquiritigenin + Ginger & Acmella Phytosome Capsules
Isoliquiritigenin has some unique effects on pain, via its inflammation balancing effects but also through its GABAergic muscle relaxing effects. We do feel that it can use a bit more oomph in the inflammation department and to get there we find that it stacks great with Mitidol. Mitidol helps dial in the inflammation balancing effects and adds endocannabinoid effects to the mix, which really helps amp up the pain management potential of Isoliquiritigenin . Another thing we really like about this stack, is that Mitidol helps further enhance the mood boosting effects of Isoliquiritigenin!*
As a dietary supplement, take one 25mg controlled dissolve tablet of Isoliquiritigenin daily.
To gain more insight, see the Isoliquiritigenin reviews and experiences below.
Nootropics Depot offers 60ct. or 180ct. jars of high-quality Isoliquiritigenin. Nootropics Depot’s Isoliquiritigenin has been lab-tested and verified for both product purity and identity.
|*Attention: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.|