Milk thistle: is it really a panacea for the liver and a treatment for obesity? The scientific facts in understandable language

Did you know that in many places around the world the milk thistle plant is called the Thorn of the Virgin Mary ? Legend has it that during her long journey through the Mediterranean, the plant with the latin name Silybum marianum germinated in the footsteps of the Mother of God and was born from her tears. No one can really say how much truth there is in this story, but this is not the only incredible statement associated with it. For years, the herb has been an exclusive hit when taken in the form of tea and essential oil, with incredible effects on the liver and blood sugar levels.

However, another question is whether the herb has such an amazing effect on diabetics, people with liver disease or in those recovering from alcohol, drugs, medications and severe illnesses, as widely claimed in recent years? Here we present only scientifically and medically proven facts about the real action of milk thistle.

The active substance in milk thistle is called silymarin and is an antioxidant compound extracted from its seeds. High quality essential oil is obtained by cold pressing, similar to olive oil and it is rich in valuable substances. It is best absorbed by taking pure oil or in the form of tea infusion.


Numerous studies on the effect of the herb on the liver have been carried out by reputable institutes. However, there is still no complete or convincing evidence that plant extracts can alter the course of a serious disease such as cirrhosis or chronic hepatitis caused by alcohol abuse, autoimmune diseases or viruses. Nevertheless, regular intake of oil and tea aids recovery and scientists believe that it has a protective effect on the liver, preventing or reducing damage. For several years, the herb has been used successfully in the treatment of persons with liver damage as a result of industrial toxins.


Medical research on this issue is surprisingly well-defined. It is claimed that milk thistle combined with traditional treatments can improve diabetes and related conditions. Studies have shown a reduction of blood sugar levels and improved cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes who regularly consume tea and milk thistle oil. Researchers have also found that milk thistle improves insulin resistance, a key part of type 2 diabetes. Rich in nutrients, milk thistle has been shown to lower LDL levels of “bad” cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease.


The pandemic of our century in developed countries has long been present. Studies have shown that the cause of about 20% of deaths are caused by diseases associated with obesity. Scientists have studied the effects of silymarin in milk thistle in a number of in vivo studies. They were performed within 18 days and examined food intake, body weight and content of epidural fat and liver tissue within 18 days. Lipid content, inflammatory cytokines, effects on insulin resistance and fatty liver were assessed. The results show that the intake of the active flavonoid silymarin contained in milk thistle causes weight loss, while food intake remains unchanged. Changes have been reported in a number of parameters studied, allowing the conclusion that in addition to the benefits of weight loss, silymarin intake also acts against liver damage and insulin resistance.


Optimal doses of milk thistle oil or tea have not yet been established for specific diseases. The quality and active ingredients in the different products may vary depending on the manufacturer, making it difficult to establish a standard dose. In all cases, taking 2-3 cups of tea a day, or 5 ml. oil twice a day is a dose that can affect the body, without causing side effects. Side effects can be allergies associated with milk thistle, although these are rare. No side effects have been observed, even in people who have been taking the herb for years. Milk thistle products are not a cure for serious diseases and should not be used as a substitute for traditional medicines and traditional medicine.


Silybum marianum seed oil comes from the milk thistle plant and is a rich source of many types of antioxidants known as polyphenols. Chief among them is silymarin which contains flavonolignans. It provides a soothing and restorative effect when applied to the skin. These properties also give the plant the ability to neutralize severely damaging hydroxyl radic

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