Liquorice, Glycyrrhiza glabra
Parts of the plant used: roots, rhizomes and stolons (aerial stems)
The licorice plant is a small shrub that measures about 1.5 meters. It grows best in warmer climates and is mainly found in southern Europe, Asia and North Africa. Glycyrrhizic acid, which is one of the main active components in licorice, is responsible for some of its therapeutic effects. To prevent adverse reactions, some licorice extract does not contain glycyrrhizin and is known as "deglycyrrhizinated" licorice.
Traditionally, licorice has been used as a flavouring agent.
Deglycyrrhizinated licorice tablets - 380 to 760 mg, 3 times a day, 20 minutes before meals.
In 2004, Canada adopted new regulations that control the manufacturing, packaging, labeling and importing of natural health products. The new regulations also include an adverse reaction reporting system. Products that conform to the regulation's criteria are identified with a natural product number (NPN) and can be legally sold in Canada. This number indicates that the product meets specific criteria for safety and purity, not that it is effective for any indication.
Medicinal plant contents vary naturally from plant to plant - just as fruits from the same package may vary in taste and texture. There is no standard to measure the active content of each plant. Thus, efficacy of natural products should be expected to vary from brand to brand as well as from bottle to bottle of the same brand.
For more information about the Natural Health Products Regulations, or to check if a product has been assessed, visit the Health Canada website at www.hc-sc.gc.ca/dhp-mps/prodnatur/index-eng.php.
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