The purplish-pink plant known as milk thistle, has been used for hundreds of years as an herbal remedy to treat liver and gallbladder disease. Milk thistle, often referred to as a weed, is a long, thin stemmed plant with spiny leaves that when ripped or crushed produce a milky-white liquid, hence the name milk thistle.
Milk thistle is native to Europe’s Mediterranean region but now grows all over the world. But what are the benefits of this weed-like plant? Can it really help your liver?
The Benefits of Milk Thistle
Milk thistle may also be called silymarin, which is a main component in milk thistle’s seeds.
Silymarin is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that has been shown to be beneficial in promoting liver health. The plant compound may keep toxins from attaching to the liver as well as keep free radicals in check. Free radicals are harmful to your body’s cells and can cause serious health conditions, such as liver cancer.
Some studies have shown that milk thistle can help to reduce inflammation and promote cell repair. Liver health conditions like jaundice, cirrhosis, liver cancer, and fatty liver disease may benefit from milk thistle’s ability to ease symptoms. It’s regularly used by doctors as a complementary therapy for such conditions based on studies that milk thistle can reduce liver inflammation and liver damage. It also helps to protect against the harmful toxin, amatoxin, which is produced by the death cap mushroom. When ingested, death cap mushrooms can be deadly.
Milk thistle has also been shown to lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels in people with type 2 diabetes. Its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits may help to prevent diabetes related conditions, such as kidney disease. Additionally, milk thistle may help to prevent heart disease due to its ability to help lower cholesterol.
Is Milk Thistle Safe?
There is very little risk of harmful side effects from consuming milk thistle as a supplement. However, people who have certain allergies may be sensitive to milk thistle. If you are allergic to ragweed, artichokes, kiwi, marigolds, daisies, and chrysanthemums, you may be at higher risk for having an allergic reaction to milk thistle. Other potential side effects include diarrhea, itching, bloating, and nausea, but very few people report having side effects.
Though you should always check with your doctor before taking a new medication or supplement, milk thistle is a safe, natural remedy for promoting liver health. Available in supplement form, milk thistle can become part of your daily nutritional routine. Our Liver Love product uses only the best, natural ingredients for promoting liver health. Packed full of organic milk thistle, dandelion, and other beneficial herbal remedies, Liver Love is one of the best supplements you can take for protecting your liver and health.