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Milk thistle is a flowering herb that has been used for thousands of years. It has the nickname of holy thistle because of the benefits it offers. Milk thistle is native to Mediterranean countries. Its name comes from the white fluid that comes out of the plants leaves when crushed. It is commonly used to treat liver and gallbladder problems, and it is the number one recommended natural herb to promote liver health. Milk thistle contains silymarin, a flavonoid with many benefits from its antioxidant, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory properties. Silymarin is a compound that contains silibinin, silidianin, and silicristin, which all work together to produce synergistic positive effects. The benefits of milk thistle are widespread and numerous.
Milk thistle is a detoxifier that can remove toxins from the body that are processed in the liver. It can thus reverse effects from alcohol consumption, pesticide effects, heavy metals, and pollutants breathed in. Thus, it offers great liver support and aid.
Milk thistle also has cardiovascular benefits that can fight inflammation and thus protect against heart disease. It also lowers high cholesterol levels and prevents oxidative stress damage from happening in the arteries. Milk Thistle can also control diabetes symptoms by decreasing blood sugar levels. It aids in the production of bile and enzymes, it helps to clean the blood by purifying the body of metabolic waste, which helps with gallbladder function and it can also help inhibit UV light-induced oxidative stress on the surface of the skin and protect against skin cancer.
Milk thistle can slow the symptoms associated with aging by preventing free radical damage. Thus, it also reduces visible signs from aging such as dark spots and wrinkles. Milk thistle has also been shown to have cognitive benefits.
Take milk thistle in moderation and as directed. Side effects of milk thistle overdose may include a mild laxative effect, nausea, gas, and an upset stomach.