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 NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd
Product name Milk Thistle seed extract Silymarin
Latin name Silybum marianum
Manufacturer Hunan Keyuan Bio-products Co., Ltd
synonyms milk thistle, Mary thistle, holy thistle, silymarin,  Mediterranean milk thistle,variegated thistle and Scotch thistle
Main ingredient Silymarin
CAS number 22888-70-6; 65666-07-1
Molecular formula (MF) C25H22O10
Molecular Weight (MW) 482.44
Appearance Yellow powder
Solubility Insoluble in water
Specification Standardized To min 80% silymarin Flavonoids
dosage  420 mg of silymarin divided into three doses for six to eight weeks
Main benefits protect liver
Applied industries sports nutrition, supplements

What is milk thistle Silymarin?

Milk thistle (latin name Silybum marianum), according to Wikipedia, a plant whose fruit and seeds have been used for more than 2,000 years as a treatment for disorders of the liver, bile ducts, and gallbladder. Milk thistle has many other names, such as Silybum marianum(botanical name), holy thistle, Marian thistle, Mary thistle, St. Mary thistle, Our Lady's thistle, wild artichoke, Mariendistel (German), and Chardon-Marie (French). Early Christians dedicated the milk thistle to the Virgin Mary and called it Marian thistle because of its properties of encouraging breast milk production in new mothers.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd The medicinal ingredient found in milk thistle is silymarin, an extract of milk thistle seeds. It is anantioxidant that protects against cell damage. Silymarin contains 4 compounds: silybin (the most active), isosilybin, silychristin, and silydianin. Most research has studied silymarin or its major compound silybin, instead of the plant in its whole form. A flavonoid complex called silymarin can be extracted from the seeds of milk thistle and is believed to be the biologically active component. The terms "milk thistle" and "silymarin" are often used interchangeably.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd It is in the seeds where we find the medicinal properties of milk thistle. Silymarin is the compound responsible for altering the structure of the liver's cell membrane, forming a barrier to liver toxins as well as rivaling vitamins C and E for its antioxidant properties. There is little silymarin found in the other parts of milk thistle, so they are not considered valuable for their medicinal effects.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

How milk thistle extract silymarin works( mechanism of action)

Silymarin’s hepatoprotective effects are accomplished both directly and indirectly. The primary actions are as follows:NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Hepatocellular Protection

Silymarin, and more specifically silibinin, directly aids hepatocytes by binding to the outside of the cells and blocking the binding of potential hepatocellular toxins. This was first noted in experimental studies investigating toxins from Amanita phalloides (death cap mushroom).7,8 Ingesting this mushroom causes swift and severe damage to hepatocytes. Silymarin blocks the receptor sites by which the mushroom toxins enter the cells. In addition, toxins that have already penetrated hepatocytes are neutralized by silibinin. In animal studies, silymarin given within 10 minutes after Amanita toxin ingestion completely counteracted the toxic effects, and if given within 24 hours of toxin ingestion silymarin prevented death and greatly reduced liver damage.9 Similar hepatoprotective effects have been shown in in vitro and animal studies against ethanol and acetaminophen.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Antioxidant Activity

Silymarin is a potent free radical scavenger and has been noted to increase production of glutathione in hepatocytes.12,13 Silymarin has been shown in one animal study to raise intracellular glutathione level by as much as 50 percent.14 Silymarin also increases the activity of superoxide dismutase in erythrocytes.15NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Regenerative Properties 

Silymarin stimulates the regenerative ability of the liver to form new hepatocytes by stimulating the activity of DNA-dependent RNA-polymerase I.16,17 This results in an increase in rRNA synthesis and increased protein synthesis. In vitro studies suggest this action extends only to normal hepatocytes and not cancerous cells.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Antifibrotic Activity 

The ability of silymarin to block fibrosis in the liver was first shown in a study with rats subjected to complete bile duct occlusion.19 This action was later demonstrated in an openlabel, uncontrolled study of 998 patients with liver disease due to a variety of factors, including alcohol abuse, chronic active hepatitis B or C, drugs, and chemical exposure.20 Use of 140 mg of silymarin (equivalent to approximately 60 mg of silibinin) three times daily for three months led to a significant reduction in amino terminal procollagen III peptide (PIIINP), a marker of fibrosis. In 19 percent of the patients, this measure had dropped to the normal range expected for a healthy person.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd The collective name for the active compounds in the milk thistle plant is silymarin. Herbalists believe that silymarin prevents toxins from invading the liver and promotes new healthy cell growth to repair any liver damage.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Milk thistle is also thought to have an antioxidant action, boost the immune system, stabilise liver cell membranes, increase cell reproduction and prevent inflammation in the liver cells.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd It also seems to protect the liver from the excesses of alcohol by eliminating hydroxy-ethyl radicals released when the alcohol compounds are broken down.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd By providing nutritional support to the liver, milk thistle helps maintain normal liver function. It has shown positive effects in treating nearly every known form of liver disease, including necroses, cirrhosis, hepatitis and liver damage caused by drug and alcohol abuse.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd The major action of milk thistle is on the liver.  The liver performs an incredible number of functions in the body.  The major functions of the liver include the production of bile and the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, fats and many other compounds used by the body.  It also metabolises drugs and detoxifies numerous ingested substances such as alcohol, as well as toxins produced by the body. NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Milk thistle supports the liver and has an antioxidant and free radical scavenging action.  This action appears to be largely due to the action of the active constituents in milk thistle which are a complex of flavanolignans collectively called silymarin.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Silymarin can help protect the liver against toxins that cause liver damage, as well as stimulate the replacement of old and damaged cells with new liver cells.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Benefits of taking milk thistle silymarin supplements

Milk thistle has been used for thousands of years in Europe as a liver restorative. It was recommended to treat malaria, melancholy, plague, and many other illnesses. It was also thought to reduce the effects of toxins such as poisonous mushrooms and alcohol on the liver. Milk thistle is known to have a powerful antioxidant affect that optimizes liver metabolism.  The liver can be subject to damage through toxic substances, like alcohol, pollutants and other environmental factors, so through its antioxidant properties, milk thistle can help flush out many toxins from the liver. The key benefits of milk thistle are summarized as below:NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Liver detoxification and weight control.

Milk Thistle enhances liver function through its ability to prevent toxin-induced damage and by stimulating the growth of new liver cells to replace old, damaged cells, without stimulating malignant tissue (tumors). Silymarin has been shown to stimulate the production of Glutathione by over 35%. Increased glutathione levels raise the liver’s ability to handle a wide range of hormones, drugs and chemicals. One human placebo controlled study has demonstrated the effectiveness of Milk Thistle in protecting the liver from toxins such as solvents, paints, and glues. The study showed the decrease in certain harmful liver enzymes and bilirubin in the group that took Milk Thistle, while there was no improvement in placebo group.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Milk Thistle does not cleanse the liver, but it increases the production of bile, which helps to reduce fatty deposits in the liver, aiding detoxification and weight control. Taken for a couple of months, Milk Thistle will improve fat metabolism in the liver. This will also stimulate weight loss. Milk Thistle is also a bitter herb that assists the digestion of fats. It helps digestive discomforts caused by overeating, such as nausea and indigestion. It is one of the most popular remedies sold in health food shops during Christmas. Everyone who drinks alcohol, take recreational drugs, indulge in fatty foods and taking medicines such as painkillers on a regular basis, should take Milk Thistle. It is a wonderful anti-hangover remedy too. Taken before and after drinking, Milk Thistle helps to alleviate hangover symptoms and helps to detoxify the liver.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Cholesterol. Milk Thistle increases fat metabolism in liver, reducing LDL (bad) cholesterol and total triglycerides.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Fights Cancer

Because of its work against free radicals, silymarin may work to strengthen the body's immune system. It has also shown some effectiveness in fighting cancer. Scientists at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio have found that silymarin is effective in prohibiting the spread of certain cancers. Breast and prostate cancer tumors have been shown to stop growing and cancer cells have been prohibited from attacking other organs.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Lowers Blood Sugar

Insulin resistant diabetes can form in people with chronic liver damage due to the liver's inability to respond to insulin. In some cases, taking silymarin can lower the fasting blood sugar levels in these patients. Silymarin strengthens the liver and allows it to handle excessive amounts of insulin that transport not only glucose to the muscles but fatty acids into fat cells.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Protection From Liver Damage

Milk thistle may protect the liver against toxicity from acetaminophen (Tylenol), alcohol and other drugs. In Europe, milk thistle is reportedly administered to patients when they are given medications known to cause liver problems.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Side Effects of taking milk thistle extract supplement

Very few bad side effects from the use of milk thistle or silymarin have been reported when taken as recommended. Several large, carefully designed studies in patients with liver disorders have found that taking silymarin may rarely have a laxative effect or cause nausea, heartburn, orstomach upset. At high doses, mild allergic reactions have been seen (more than 1,500 milligrams a day).NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Silymarin has been used in pregnant women who have a bile blockage in the liver, with no toxic effects to the patient or fetus. Silymarin have also been given to children intravenously for mushroom poisoning.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Theoretically, milk thistle may lower blood sugar levels, so it should be used with caution by people with diabetes, hypoglycemia and those taking medications or supplements that affect blood sugar levels.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd There is a theoretical risk that milk thistle could have an estrogen-like effect, so people with hormone-sensitive conditions such as endometriosis, uterine fibroids or cancers of the breast, uterus and ovaries should avoid milk thistle, particularly the above ground parts of the plant.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Milk thistle may reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives. One constituent of milk thistle can inhibit an enzyme called beta-glucuronidase, which is involved in the activity of oral contraceptives.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

Dosing considerations for Milk Thistle.

Warning: Liver disease is a potentially fatal disease and patients should not attempt self-diagnosis or treatment. First consult your doctor and he/she should regularly monitor your liver functioning.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd •For hangovers: Take a 500mg capsule that contains milk thistle seeds extract.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd •Standard dosage is 100-200mg, two to three times a day, of an extract that is standardised to contain 70-80% silymarin.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd •Half a cup a day of a decoction of the seeds can be taken for liver infections.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd •For most liver conditions, take up to 10ml of the tincture (made from the seeds) a day in hot water left to cool.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd Daily dose: For preventive care, take 420 mg of silymarin divided into three doses for six to eight weeks, after which the dose can be reduced to 280 mg per day for an indefinite period. Look for preparations that are standardized to 80 percent silymarin. Standardized milk thistle products can be found in natural and health-food stores.NKbShanghai Natural Bio-engineering Co., Ltd

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