Wrote by Stephanie Oswald Certified Health Coach (IIN, graduated 2014) and an Registered Holistic Nutritionist.
Milk thistle is a powerful herb popularly known for its liver protective properties.
Our liver is the top detoxification system within the body, and its health is integral for our overall wellness. Milk thistle is praised for its content of the flavonoid silymarin, which has been well researched for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Because of the antioxidant qualities, Milk thistle protects the liver from toxins and pollutants by preventing free radical damage. It is used therapeutically for a variety of liver disorders like chronic liver disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver, hepatitis and cirrhosis. It can help with hangovers too, because milk thistle is able to increase cellular vitality and support the livers detoxification of alcohol. It has even been found to help increase glutathione levels in the liver; glutathione is involved in many processes in the body like tissue building and immune system maintenance.
The Antioxidant properties of Milk thistle help combat free radical damage and oxidative stress in the body. Free radicals are atoms or molecules that are highly reactive with other cellular structures because the contain unpaired electrons. We encounter these in many ways like exposure to toxins, smoking cigarettes, eating fried foods, consuming alcohol, exposure to pollutants, pesticides in our food and even metabolic functions in the body which create them as a natural by-product. If we do not have enough antioxidant support to combat them we can end up at higher risk for premature aging, cell death due to oxidation, damage to proteins and DNA leaving us at higher risk for disease development. Free radical damage has even been associated with the development of cancer, atherosclerosis, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. Antioxidants like those contained within Land Art’s Milk Thistle, scavenge free radicals stopping them from oxidizing cells and creating damage within the body.
Milk thistle has anti-inflammatory properties, making it a great addition to a natural acne treatment protocol. Acne is commonly considered to be an inflammatory condition of the skin and responds well to anti-inflammatories. One study found that people with acne who took 210 grams Milk thistle per day for 8 weeks experienced a 53% reduction in their acne lesions. Inflammation is our bodies first response to damage, using inflammation to bring white blood cells and circulation to the area to protect us from viruses and other invaders. The problem comes with chronic inflammation, which causes this immune response without invaders to fight off. Inflammatory conditions like Arthritis and Gout, can be supported and improved through the use of anti-inflammatories like Milk thistle. In recent years a popular area of study for Milk thistle has been on its anticancer effects, showing promise for use in addition to treatment. It has also been shown to be neuroprotective (protective of the brain) and could help prevent brain function decline as we age.
Quick Hangover Fix:
Support your liver after a night out and feel better for doing so.
- 1.Mix 1 tsp. Land Art Milk Thistle extract with 1 Tbsp. Land Art liquid B-Complex.
- 2.Consume and drink a glass of water to follow.
- 1.“Prescription for natural healing” Author: Phyllis A. Balch, CNC. New York, USA. 5th edition; 2010. pg. 120
- 2.Federico A, Dallio M, Loguercio C. “Silymarin/Silybin and Chronic Liver Disease: A Marriage of Many Years.” Journal: Molecules; 2017
- 3.“Staying Healthy with Nutrition” Author: Dr. Hass, MD. USA; 2006 edition. pg. 262, 269
- 4.Karimi G, Vahabzadeh M, Lari P, Rashedinia M, Moshiri M. "Silymarin", a promising pharmacological agent for treatment of diseases.” Journal: Iranian journal of basic medical sciences; 2011
- 5.“Milk Thistle” National Center for Complimentary integrative Medicine.
- 6.“About free radical damage” Author: Stephanie Liou; 2011. Huntington’s Outreach Project for Education, at Stanford (HOPES).