Licorice, that chewy black candy, has also long been used for a wide variety of ailments. But new scientific research suggests the compound that gives the extract its healing abilities may also interfere with certain drugs.
The active compound in licorice, called glycyrrhizin, is derived from a group of plants in the pea family. The extract has been used for medicinal purposes for many years in Europe and Asia. In fact, it’s used more as a drug than a candy in Asia.
The findings suggest that some patients should avoid the sweets made with the plant extract, reports Rachel Ehrenberg, writing for ScienceNews.
Scientists are continuing to study how glycyrrhizin interacts with certain therapeutic drugs. The research team headed by Pei-Dawn Lee Chao of the China Medical University in Taiwan tested the compound with rats.
So, if you’re taking certain medications, you may want to check with your doctor before gorging on mass quantities of licorice.
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