IN THE KITCHEN: m i l k • t h i s t l e

MILK THISTLE


Milk thistle.

Sounds scary right?

I mean thistles are the “weeds” you avoid in the woods.

Before you brush this thistle off, take a moment to reconsider MILK thistle as it has potent therapeutic properties particularly with the liver and as you’ll recall from your highschool biology class, the liver is our main filtration organ of the body. We’ve GOT to love our liver.

The most obvious signs of liver stagnation are skin disorders, lethargy, and digestive issues [particularly relating to fat]. While some of the more inconspicuous ones entail:

  • a bit of extra weight around your mid-section along
  • bloat
  • mood swings
  • irregular cycles

Any of those ring a bell?

Enter… your new best friend: milk thistle. Not only does it work to support liver renewal it is particularly useful in targeting estrogen dominance. By simply introducing milk thistle into your life, you can work to re-establish the correct balance of hormones, improve the efficiency of your liver function and can start feeling more like yourself again!

What should i look for in purchasing milk thistle?

Milk thistle is hard to find fresh [unless you are foraging it in the wild] so it is most commonly found as an herbal supplement. You can purchase this in either capsule or tincture form.

To be sure that you’re getting ALL the benefits milk thistle has to offer, make sure your supplement is at least 70% silymarin (this is THE active ingredient that improves liver function, after all!) [1]

Milk thistle seeds can also be purchased from apothecaries, health food stores and reputable online sources. If utilizing the seed, make sure to grind it in a coffee grinder and sprinkle on any food you don’t mind with a bit of crunch [i.e salads, smoothies].

What are the main benefits of milk thistle?

Primarily, milk thistle helps improve liver function. [2] This makes it a great option if you are trying to improve your over all liver health (or just need to recover from a night of drinking!). Additionally, another of the main functions of the liver is to regulate the production of estrogen. Estrogen dominance has it’s own set of side effects, some of which include cycle irregularities, weight retention and higher risk of estrogen dominant cancers.

Even though milk thistle is slightly estrogenic, studies have found that it actually helps speed up the metabolism of estrogen. While a bit counterintuitive, in this case it looks like the benefits out-weigh the addition of estrogen to your system! [3]
We love the benefits of milk thistle SO much, we’ve created this beautiful infographic for you highlighting all of the amazing benefits of milk thistle. As a bonus, it includes my favorite recipe for milk thistle bread!

Click HERE to download, print + savor.

References

  1. https://www.nature.com/articles/ajg1998644
  2. https://chestnutherbs.com/the-ecology-of-estrogen-in-the-female-human-body/
  3. https://www.marksdailyapple.com/milk-thistle-and-estrogen-low-libido-and-pollution-mitigation/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21234288
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9563902

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