Milk Thistle Benefits
Over the past forty years, intensive chemical, pharmacological and clinical research has confirmed the mechanisms of action and therapeutic value of milk thistle in a wide range of human liver-related and non-liver-related conditions. Literally hundreds of modern research studies have confirmed the remarkable ability of milk thistle to protect the liver and the body against virtually all types of damage.
Additionally, the United States National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have catalogued more than 400 scientific studies of milk thistle and its active compounds in their medicine database. These studies reflect what generations past knew and depended on – that milk thistle is one of the most valuable and beneficial herbal remedies and treatments available anywhere in the world.
Today, milk thistle is still one of the most commonly used medicinal plants in the world and is also the number one recommended natural herb for liver health. In fact, in Europe, milk thistle is a prescribed medication. The milk thistle extract is prescribed to treat mushroom poisoning, alcoholic cirrhosis, chronic hepatitis, drug and alcohol-induced liver damage and acute viral hepatitis, just to name a few.
Milk thistle extract is used to maintain liver health and to protect the liver from the effects of toxins such as alcohol, a polluted environment or workplace, and a host of liver related diseases.
Liver related conditions indicating the use of milk thistle are varied, including, but not limited to:
- Alcoholic cirrhosis
- Chronic active hepatitis
- Drug and alcohol induced liver damage
- Acute viral hepatitis
- Fatty liver, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)
- Fibrosis and cirrhosis
- Hepatic toxicity caused by steroid usage
- Environmental sensitivities and toxins
- A medical condition that necessitates the use of hepatotoxic medications
- Regular moderate-to-heavy alcohol use
Additionally, experimental and clinical studies suggest that milk thistle extracts also have the following non-liver related benefits:
- Lowers cholesterol levels, which benefits the heart
- Reduces the growth of cancer cells in breast, lung, colon, prostate, cervical and renal cancers
- Functions as a therapeutic agent for the prevention of Alzheimer's disease
- Improves blood sugar levels
- Contains numerous anti-aging properties
- Reduces cell damage caused by radiation and chemotherapy treatments
- Supplements sunscreen protection and may be useful against multiple types of skin disease
- Works as a free radical scavenger and powerful antioxidant
- Reduces hot flashes and other related menopausal symptoms
- Helps with intestinal / indigestion issues
- Reduces the effects of deathcap mushroom (Amanita phalloides) poisoning
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