Q. What health concerns may be related to eating a lot of black licorice, especially for children?
A. Natural black licorice contains glycyrrhizin. Regular consumption of this compound can have serious health consequences, including fluid retention, high blood pressure, low potassium levels and hormone imbalance. Lethargy, fatigue, weakness and irregular heart rhythms may also result. Elderly people and young children may be especially susceptible to licorice complications.
Not all licorice candy contains natural licorice extract. Red licorice is not a problem and neither is licorice flavored with anise.