It was Naomi Judd from whom I learned
about milk thistle. I began taking this remarkable,
ancient remedy immediately and never stopped. You can
acquire it in most health food stores, and it is offered in
a variety of forms. Some are combined with artichoke
leaves, licorice and dandelion root extract, etc. Among the
best of these products are Hepastat and Hepata Trope (refer
to appendix B for a list of ingredients).
I use the organic seeds, simmering them for two hours and
then using the tea iced. Also it is important to take
at least 1000 mg. of milk thistle per day in addition to the
tea, as silymarin is not water-soluble. There are other
active ingredients in milk thistle that are important but,
unfortunately, most of them are eliminated from the processed
capsule form. This is why I recommend the tea as well.
I've reviewed many articles and studies on milk thistle and
hope that some of them will find their way to all those liver
doctors who told me there was nothing I could take to help
my liver regenerate.
For centuries, dating back to Roman and Greek civilizations,
milk thistle has been known and used as an antidote for poisoning,
including snake bites. Milk thistle's derivative, silymarin
is now considered medicine's most important antidote to poisoning
by the mushroom toxins a-amintin and phalloidin.
Cited as one of the oldest known herbal medicines, milk thistle,
part of the daisy family, is a relative of the common garden
thistle as well as the tasty artichoke. In Roman times,
Pliny the Elder, a noted naturalist, described the medicinal
uses of milk thistle, indicating this prickly medicine was
excellent for carrying off bile.
Jean Rohrer comments:
It has been relatively recent clinical research, especially
in Germany, which has brought the use of this multifunctional
plant to front row prominence in the treatment of liver toxicity.
Indeed, milk thistle is considered supreme at healing chronic
or acute liver damage, virtually regardless of cause, as well
as protecting the liver against many toxins and pollutants.
First silymarin stabilizes and strengthens liver cell walls,
stopping toxins from entering. It acts by inducing formation
of liver cell proteins, which are incorporated into the cell
walls, making them stronger and more resistant to toxins.
Second, by increasing the rate of protein synthesis, silymarin
enhances regeneration of liver cells.
Third, are the antioxidants and free-radical scavenging abilities
of this marvelous weed. As if these impressive effects
weren't sufficient, the fourth mechanism silymarin gets involved
in is the enzyme and catalytic activity of the LIVER.
It inhibits production of the enzymes which produce substances
damaging to the liver, while at the same time preventing the
depletion of glutathione on liver cells, a substance which
mediates cell metabolism.
Clinically, milk thistle causes significant reversal of symptoms
of both acute and chronic liver problems from viral Hepatitis
to cirrhosis (10).
During my treatment I took 400mg of milk thistle capsules
3 times daily, 30 minutes before breakfast, before lunch and
I also drank 1 to 2 quarts of milk thistle tea per day.
I took 3 Hepastat 2 times per day.
I took 2 Hepata Trope 2 times per day.