Toxic substances surround us every day, in our food, water, medications, and especially the air we breathe. These toxins are extremely detrimental to the health of your liver, and your choice of liver support supplements can drastically affect this very important organ. Milk thistle has long been known for its liver supportive and protective qualities, and is the number one herbal supplement prescribed for most liver ailments. It has proven in various clinical studies to have a profound effect on the progression of fibrosis, and has been quite effective in slowing the rate of advancement of liver damage.
Most people are aware of the stages of liver disease: inflammation, fibrosis, cirrhosis, and liver failure. If not treated in the early stages, liver cancer (Hepatocellular carcinoma, or HCC) can develop. Milk thistle has been proven to help protect liver cells against further damage from harmful toxins, which speed up the progression of the above stages of liver disease. Supplementing with milk thistle in the early stages can keep the disease from quickly advancing towards liver cancer. In addition to keeping liver cells healthy, milk thistle can also help this vital organ regenerate new liver cells, in an effort to prevent any additional scar tissue from developing.
Milk thistle, or silymarin, is made up of three main components – and silybin is the most beneficial to the liver. This highly concentrated part of milk thistle has the most therapeutic effects on the liver. Research shows that not only is milk thistle anti-fibrotic and anti-inflammatory, but it has potent antioxidants and can block toxins from invading the liver.
Because it is an herbal supplement, the FDA has not approved milk thistle as a treatment for any condition or disease, including liver cancer. However, the clinical research offers hope that milk thistle’s proven ability to help fight liver disease makes it a viable liver cancer preventive method. Anyone with advancing liver disease can benefit from this therapeutic supplement that has no known contraindications or interactions.