Parts of the plant used: The roots mainly but also the aerial parts
Chicory, a perennial plant which is native to Europe, Asia and North America, is now grown pretty much everywhere and is easy to cultivate. Inulin, a compound extracted from the chicory root, is often used as a texturizing agent or as a fat or sugar substitute.
Chicory is traditionally ingested as a warm beverage.
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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