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Licorice: It is not Just Candy
Licorice is a root long used for natural healing.
We generally find licorice in the candy section of our local department or grocery store. We eat it as a sweet snack in between meals and we hand it out with our Halloween treats so exactly why would it not be classified as a candy?
Used as a health aide for thousands of years previous natural licorice is actually a root that has been used as a health treatment for a very long time. This is a fact that many individuals may be completely unaware of.
Licorice is a food product that many people don't recognize as being anything more than simply a delightful sweet treat.
Licorice As A Flavoring Agent:
The medical and scientific communities today know considerably more about Licorice's health benefits and detriments than when it was first introduced as a health aide thousands of years ago.
Licorice is now most often used as a flavoring for an array of today's commercial food products. You have probably heard of licorice flavored tea or of licorice flavored cough drops.
Licorice is still purchased by some individuals not for its flavor but strictly for the health benefits that it imparts. Yet Licorice's attributes and many side effects still remain very misunderstood by the vast majority of people who consume it.
The Licorice plant or Glycyrrhiza glabra as it is officially known.
Where does licorice come from?
The Licorice plant or Glycyrrhiza glabra is a low growth bush, perennial in nature that grows wild in select areas of Europe and Asia. Most commercially grown licorice is exported from Greece, Turkey and Asia.
A flavorful ingredient known as Glycyrrhiza found within the roots and underground stems of the plant is what accounts for its taste and sweetness. Glycrrhiza is about fifty times sweeter than sugar, its name comes from Ancient Greece, and it appropriately translates to mean "Sweet Root".
Ingredients within the Licorice plant's roots are used to make a popular black candy that we know, or refer to as, licorice. Licorice root is also commonly used as a sweetening or flavoring agent in a variety of today's commercial food products. It is often added to herb teas, cough soothing lozenges, cough syrups, or found used as a flavoring within a wide assortment of candy.
Licorice root is also used as a filler within drug capsules and even as a flavoring to offset a drugs unpleasant taste. In the United Kingdom licorice is used as an emulsifier to create the foam in drink products and alcoholic beverages. Yet among the people who consume it, many are completely unaware of licorice's health benefits, and detriments.
Classic Scotty Dogs natural black licorice. Delicious.
Scottie dogs black licorice or red makes a delightful gift for the licorice lover. It's a retro treat that just never goes out of style.
Licorice for skin issues? Yes this root may help.
The Health Benefits Of Licorice:
Licorice root or Glycrrhiza is primarily used as a treatment for inflammation of the stomach or for ailments of the upper respiratory tract.
It is used as an aide for constipation, gastritis, stomach ulcers, canker sores or mouth ulcers, and also for relief of menstrual cramping. As well it is frequently used to relieve symptoms of bronchitis or the common cold, and can be found in many over the counter cough syrups, and lozenges.
Studies are currently being conducted to see if Glycrrhiza could prove beneficial in the treatment of HIV and Genital Herpes. So far the results are showing positive results.
It is always best when looking into alternative health therapies to consult with your local doctor to insure that participating in that treatment will be of benefit to you. Always research and be aware of the medications, herbs and alternative therapies that you are considering undertaking. Most herbal and alternative treatments are not federally regulated, and as such, can prove harmful or even fatal if used incorrectly.
Love it or hate it how do you feel about this natural treat?
Do you enjoy the taste of licorice?
Do you remember the black licorice pipes?
Well here they are back from the past. These black licorice pipe have the same great taste of black licorice you loved as a kid in the style you loved as a kid.
Potential heath problems associated with licorice.
Licorice is not without its negative health affects and most people are unaware of the ill effects that can occur from consuming this sweet treat on a regular basis.
Eating as little as fifty grams of black licorice candy per day for a two week period can raise a person's blood pressure dramatically. It can also cause potassium depletion, electrolyte disturbance, sodium or fluid retention, or effect PH levels within the blood. People should be very aware of the amount of licorice that they consume and the length of time that they consume it.
Glycyrrhizic acid is the compound within Licorice that is responsible for most of Licorice's negative attributes. Which is why a means has been devised to remove this ingredient from the root itself. This safer product is labeled as DGL or deglycyrrhizinated licorice.
As another means of avoiding the harmful effects of Glycrrhizic acid, the anise plant which has similar flavoring to licorice, is now often used in food products in combination with licorice, or to completely replace the use of licorice.
Licorice gifts for the licorice lover.
What could be a nicer gift than a tin of licorice. These licorice goodies will melt their way into the heart of the licorice lover on your gift list.
More trivia on the sweets we love.
Red licorice is candy so is not the same as the black variety.
Red licorice is very different from black.
It turns out that red licorice isn't really a licorice product at all. It really is candy.
It does not contain the potentially harmful effects that black licorice may contain because red licorice is made more from artificial flavorings of cherry, strawberry, or raspberry, rather than from the natural flavoring found within the licorice plant.
Red licorice does not contain any part of the glyrrhiza glabra plant and therefor is not really a licorice at all but instead simply a candy treat.
Red licorice is not made from the Glycyrrhiza glabra plant but many of us still enjoy its unique taste. It is simply a great tasting candy designed for us to enjoy as a sweet treat.