(WBAY) - People who dislike the taste of black licorice now have a scientific reason to turn their noses up at the controversial candy.
The Food and Drug Administration says black licorice could cause some health problems for people 40 or older.
Eating two ounces of black licorice a day for at least two weeks could cause an irregular heart rhythm or arrhythmia, according to the FDA.
What causes the irregularity? Black licorice has a compound called glycyrrhizin. It can cause potassium levels in the blood to fall. That can lead to heart issues, high blood pressure, and swelling.
Linda Katz, M.D., says those potassium issues are often resolved when the person stops eating black licorice.
The FDA urges moderation. The agency says it is best to avoid eating large amounts of black licorice in one setting.
They warn it can interact with some medications and supplements, so ask your doctor if it is OK to have black licorice.
Full report from FDA: https://www.fda.gov/forconsumers/consumerupdates/ucm277152.htm