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The Benefits of Milk Thistle
Milk Thistle Herb, The Amazing Liver Detoxifier
What is Milk Thistle?
Milk thistle, also known as silymarin, is a herb that comes from the sunflower family, has purple flowers, and whose black seeds are collected and used for a variety of medicinal purposes. Silymarin is the active ingredient that is responsible for its myriad health benefits.
How can Milk Thistle benefit you?
Milk thistle is a potent antioxidant (many times more so than Vitamin E and C). Antioxidants help scavenge free radicals, which are highly reactive substances that attack and may damage the DNA of healthy cells, resulting in premature aging and disease. Its major benefit is that it has been shown to protect and enhance the function of the liver.
The liver is the body's second largest organ, which is responsible for detoxifying pollutants and processing nutrients and fats. Specifically, milk thistle prevents the depletion of glutathione, which is a substance that is crucial for the liver's role in detoxification. It also helps promote the regeneration of new liver cells.
It can alleviate a host of ailments associated with the liver, such as hepatitis and cirrhosis. People who drink alcohol (a toxin the liver must neutralize) can benefit by its dietary inclusion; alcohol depletes glutathione, which milk thistle helps replenish.
Another noted benefit is the herb's ability to reduce inflammation, and may retard skin cell proliferation, a mechanism that can lead to such conditions as psoriasis.
Lastly, this herb may offer help for endometriosis (one of the most common causes of infertility in women) as it allows the liver to process estrogen more effectively.
Precautions about Milk Thistle Extract
Almost no known adverse side effects, other than a possible temporary mild laxative effect.
The evidence for milk thistle's efficacy is significant; it is among the world's most thoroughly studied and scientifically researched herbs. Most of the documented benefits concern its ability to assist the function of the liver, but more recent research is shedding light on its role as a cancer-preventing agent, although such findings are still preliminary.
Because of its numerous documented benefits, along with an almost total scarcity of harmful side effects, we believe it is a supplement well worth checking out.
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