Milk thistle is an herb that’s been used for thousands of years to support liver, kidney, and gall bladder health. It contains the flavonoid silymarin, which is thought to be responsible for many of its beneficial effects, including liver protection and antioxidant, anti-viral, and anti-inflammatory properties (Mercola, 2017). When the leaves are crushed they release a milky sap, giving this herb its characteristic name.
According to Mercola (2017), Silymarin, its active component, is actually a group of compounds; silibinin, silidianin, and silicristin; which work together to provide multiple health benefits.
Milk thistle is an anti-fibrotic, which means it prevents tissue scarring, and it’s thought to act as a “toxin blockade agent” by inhibiting the binding of toxins to liver cell membrane receptors (Mercola, 2017).
Silymarin is used to treat alcoholic liver disease, acute and chronic viral hepatitis, and toxin-induced liver diseases. It has been shown in animal studies to reduce liver injury caused by a number of drugs and environmental toxins (Mercola, 2017).
Milk thistle contains silymarin and silybin, antioxidants that are known to help protect the liver from toxins, including the effects of alcohol. Silymarin been found to increase glutathione (a powerful antioxidant that is crucial for liver detoxification), and also may help to regenerate liver cells (Mercola, 2017).
Milk thistle works by drawing toxins of out the body that can cause a range of symptoms. These include cancer, diabetes, kidney stones. Gall bladder disorders and it helps with free radical damage. It contains high levels of lipophilic extracts from the seeds of plants which serves as a bioflavonoid antioxidant. (Dr. Axe.com, 2017).
According to Dr. Axe (2017) milk thistle is an antioxidant which is equal in power to vitamin E and Vitamin C which helps to fight free radical damage and slows the aging process.
Top Milk Thistle benefits:
1. Liver detoxification and health
2. Helps to fight cancer
3. Can help lower high cholesterol
4. May help control or prevent diabetes
5. Helps prevent gallstones
6. Boost skin health
7. Antiaging effects
Dr. Axe (2107). Milk thistle benefits retrieve from https://draxe.com/milk-thistle-benefits/
Mercola.com (2017). Milk Thistle. Retrieved from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/09/14/milk-thistle-benefits.aspx