Milk thistle supports liver function – if used properly

Milk thistle

Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) is a well know among enthusiasts of natural medicine. It supports function of the liver, gallbladder, the immune system and speeds up metabolism.

But in order to reap maximum benefits, you should learn as much as possible about this interesting plant. For example, thatit is not suitable for pregnant and lactating women or children under 15. But there is more…

The amount of the active ingredient matters

Milk thistle comes from the Mediterranean, so it may be grown in Central Europe too, but it will never have such high content of active substances. Seeds are used most often but they ripen around mid-September or the beginning of October and to ripen fully they need a stable daily temperature of around 25 °C, which we do not get in autumn… So, if you wish to buy natural milk thistle products, make sure to buy from sellers who get their milk thistle from warm regions.

Milk thistle

Photo: Pixabay

Milk thistle facts

The active ingredient that we value most and that helps with liver problems is called silymarinbut it is susceptible to a whole range of external factors that can harm it. High temperature for example can destroy it – so no milk thistle tea. Even 40 °C already starts to destroy silymarin.

Alcohol is bad for silymarin too, and unfortunately, you cannot even make a milk thistle oil. Most of silymarin is concentrated in the peel and it cannot be released by pressing.Oil made from milk thistle has a high content of vitamin E or linoleic acid, and it is more suitable for a cold kitchen and cannot be used as a therapeutic product.

So, how should you consume milk thistle? Ideally, in the form of finely crushed seeds, which are easier to digest. Capsules are also good, but make sure you have natural ones with the lowest possible content of preservatives and other additives.

Preview photo: Pixabay

Radek Štěpán

Gardening is my hobby, I have a lot of experience and I am happy to share it.


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