The smell and taste of the flower is sometimes overbearing, I know as a child I always found the taste to be very intimidating in the british sweet of aniseed balls. It is said to be a flavour similar to liquorice, fennel and tarragon. Medicinally, Anise can be used in relieving menstural cramps. It can also be used as a natural female hormone suppliment as it contains a type of estrogen. The plant has a calming effect, which could aid with stress and sleep issues. The essential oil can rid the head of headlice and clothes of mites.
When combined with blood, however, aniseed can cause high toxicity levels in the blood and possibily lead to death. Its oil can be harmful to an unborn child. Otherwise, the herb is pretty safe.
The plant is taken and eaten in many different ways around the world. It is often added to food as flavouring. As well as the popular British sweet, Aniseed can also be taken as a tea.
Yes, balls. Typical British. (Aniseed Balls are a traditional treat in the UK. These are branded Sweets 'N' Candy)