Construction worker dies after eating black licorice

The 54-year-old died after consuming a bag and a half of the licorice everyday for a few weeks throwing his electrolytes off causing cardiac arrest.
2:29 | 09/25/20

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Transcript for Construction worker dies after eating black licorice
Back now with an unusual warning about black licorice. A 54-year-old man died of heart failure after eating too much of will reeve is here with the details on all of that. Good morning, will. Reporter: Good morning, George. It sounds crazy, but it's true as rare as it is, and it could happen to anyone. As candy sales skyrocket this fall, as Halloween approaches, experts have some advice and warnings. Black licorice, you either hate it or you love it, but one man's love of the sweet cost him his life. A new report from "The new England journal of medicine" revealing a 54-year-old construction worker ate so much black licorice it threw his electrolytes off causing cardiac arrest. The man who ate a bag and a half of black licorice every day for a few weeks collapsed at a fast food restaurant. He switched from red to black licorice, which contains glycyrrhizin. At large amounts, it can be dangerous. It leads to low potassium level, which can lead to cardiac arrest in this case. Reporter: Dr. Neel Butala says these cases are rare -- Even consumed in smaller quantities, licorice can lead to rising in blood pressure. It can lead to long-term heart problems. Reporter: Small amounts of the candy can add up over time. The licorice compound may appear in other foods as well, including teas, soft candies and some beers for flavoring. The problem so serious the fda has even issued a Halloween warning before. Remember, don't eat large amounts of black licorice at one time. Reporter: And as we approach the holiday, candy sales are spiking. According to market researchers, they're up 13% since last year, a bigger jump than usual. If you can't live without your black licorice, the fda has some tips. Don't eat large amounts of the sweet, and if you feel irregular heart rhythm or muscle weakness, stop eating it and call a doctor. This is a rare case, and Hershey's which makes Twizzlers licorice told ABC in a statement, in part, all of our products are safe to eat and formulated in full compliance with fda regulations and should be consumed in moderation. George? I guess that's good advice. Thanks very much. Okay.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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