Milk Thistle: Is it Required?

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Summer3
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Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 1020
   Posted 1/23/2012 9:09 AM (GMT -6)   
Should everyone take milk thistle while on antibiotics even if there is no elevation of most liver enzymes? Is there any danger to it when combined with certain antibiotics? Is 175 mg the maximum safe dose?

What does it actually do to help your liver?

Thanks!

springsjean
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Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 2050
   Posted 1/23/2012 9:29 AM (GMT -6)   
Here's a little piece on the benefits of milk thistle. I myself had a problem with elevated liver enzymes when first diagnosed. I take milk thistle ever since and have never had a problem.

http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/milk-thistle-000266.htm

Post Edited By Moderator (borderlyme) : 1/23/2012 3:57:15 PM (GMT-7)


borderlyme
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Date Joined Jul 2011
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   Posted 1/23/2012 5:57 PM (GMT -6)   
(Just added the hyperlink).
Co-Moderator, Lyme Disease Forum

borderlyme
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Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 1347
   Posted 1/23/2012 5:58 PM (GMT -6)   
My doctor didn't put me on milk thistle (I take Hepatox) until my liver enzymes came back elevated (and within just a month or so they're back down to normal, thankfully). I don't think it would hurt to support your liver a little extra, but if you don't need it, it might not be necessary to spend the money on it...
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yazzer
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Date Joined Jun 2011
Total Posts : 898
   Posted 1/23/2012 6:56 PM (GMT -6)   
My doc and acupuncturist both recommended the milk thistle due to its liver supporting qualities. I have gall stones too so my detox pathway through the liver was sluggish. This on its own can cause neuro Lyme like symptoms and then, add the Lyme and it's like London brain fog! Lol. It can't hurt and its not too expensive. I also do an herbal tea called Everyday Detox instead of coffee these days and it seems to help. Jeez, I am all backwards ...the Herbals to help my liver go on the top end and now the coffee goes in the bottom end. Maybe I should move to the land down under!

borderlyme
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Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 1347
   Posted 1/23/2012 7:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Good point yazzer - my guess is that if I started milk thistle early on, my liver enzymes never would've been elevated in the first place!

I used to drink peach detox tea - really yummy! I've been drinking root tea lately instead, which I think is also supposed to be good for detoxing.It's always nice when your "medicine" tastes good!
Co-Moderator, Lyme Disease Forum

skBM
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Date Joined Jun 2011
Total Posts : 315
   Posted 1/23/2012 8:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi summer3

From what I have gathered, most forumites here are taking between 600-900mg per day, and there doesn't seem to be a good reason to not take it. Especially while under treatment. I haven't encountered anyone that says it interacts negatively with anything else, but talk to your doctor about it if you have one.


from a previous thread:

SickMan said...
When I was fighting my disease as Meniere's Syndrome, I ran into the problem of how to get doctors to believe the stuff I read on the internet. Most doctors just roll their eyes when you try to show them something you found on the web.

Enter PubMed. PubMed is the National Institutes of Health clearinghouse for medical research. Articles published on PubMed are the same articles that doctors read in the medical journals. It doesn't mean that the research is all accurate, but it does meet the standards for medical research and has been peer-reviewed. If you search PubMed for "Milk Thistle" you'll find these and many more www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed

Here are studies concerting Milk Thistle and Liver Protection

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21633595 Silybin and the liver: from basic research to clinical practice.
"On the basis of literature data, silybin seems a promising drug for chronic liver disease"

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20564545 Milk thistle in liver diseases: past, present, future.
"Silymarin has been used to treat alcoholic liver disease, acute and chronic viral hepatitis and toxin-induced liver diseases"

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21560654 [Hepatoprotective properties of silymarin].
"The results of clinical trials and systematic reviews of silymarin use show high efficacy of the drug in patients with amanitine, drugs, and other toxic injuries of liver, viral hepatitis, NASH."

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20034535 Silymarin, the antioxidant component and Silybum marianum extracts prevent liver damage.

It can reverse the damage from hepatitis c
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22091246 Effects of silybum marianum on patients with chronic hepatitis C
"This study indicated that in patients with CHC performing silymarin (650 mg/day) for 6 months, improved serum HCV-RNA titer, serum aminotransferases (ALT, AST), hepatic fibrosis and patient's quality of life"

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17548793 Review of clinical trials evaluating safety and efficacy of milk thistle (Silybum marianum [L.] Gaertn.).
"Promising results have been reported in the protective effect of milk thistle in certain types of cancer, and ongoing trials will provide more evidence about this effect. In addition, new established doses and improvement on the quality and standardization of this herb will provide the much-awaited evidence about the efficacy of milk thistle in the treatment of liver diseases. Milk thistle extracts are known to be safe and well tolerated, and toxic or adverse effects observed in the reviewed clinical trials seem to be minimal. "

Other studies show that Silybin and Silymarin (extracts of Milk Thistle) are beneficial for a whole range of issues besides just the liver, including reducing tumor growth.

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21300790 Investigating the potential for toxicity from long-term use of the herbal products, goldenseal and milk thistle.
"In contrast, the radical-scavenging and antioxidant properties of silibinin and other flavonolignans in milk thistle extract may have contributed to the decrease in background tumors in rodents in the present studies. "

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20015009 Silibinin--a promising new treatment for cancer.

and may improve amyloid plaque build up in Alzheimers
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21071836 Silymarin attenuated the amyloid β plaque burden and improved behavioral abnormalities in an Alzheimer's disease mouse model.
"These results suggest that silymarin is a promising agent for the prevention of AD."

However, it can effect blood concentrations of warfarin, so if you're like me and take warfarin (Coumadin), you need to monitor your pro-time carefully while taking Milk Thistle

yazzer
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2011
Total Posts : 898
   Posted 1/24/2012 8:40 AM (GMT -6)   
LOL - "forumites" - love it - sounds like a rare crystal gem of some sort...:-)

Traveler
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 14858
   Posted 1/24/2012 12:58 PM (GMT -6)   
Coming back on the forum after a day of migraines - it took me a minute to get that - forumites!!! LOL!!!

One thing I would like to add - watch yourself when you start milk thistle!! I had a bad herx when I tried it, as it will help to get rid of toxins in the liver. My Acu doc later determined that I have trouble with detoxing, and so I have to use different ways to detox. Most don't have this kind of a reaction from what I have seen over the years of being active here, though.
Co-Moderator, Lyme Disease ;)

Treating with Acupuncture, Traditional & Modern Chinese Medicine & Western Herbs. Before tx, I had all but 20 of the symptoms on the "Master Symptom List"

"Absence of proof is not proof of absence" - Dr. Edwin Masters, great LLMD & researcher -RIP

I break up my post because my eyes have been effected by TBI's as well, making long paragraphs very hard to read.

Traveler
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 14858
   Posted 1/24/2012 1:58 PM (GMT -6)   
While looking for some other info, I just came across a Hepatitis info page about using milk thistle and the possible interactions with abx and other medications - I think we should all read over this one, as it's always better to be safe than sorry!

www.hcvadvocate.org/hepatitis/hepC/mthistle.html
Co-Moderator, Lyme Disease ;)

Treating with Acupuncture, Traditional & Modern Chinese Medicine & Western Herbs. Before tx, I had all but 20 of the symptoms on the "Master Symptom List"

"Absence of proof is not proof of absence" - Dr. Edwin Masters, great LLMD & researcher -RIP

I break up my post because my eyes have been effected by TBI's as well, making long paragraphs very hard to read.

snipher
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/10/2012 6:58 AM (GMT -6)   
So it turns out that you can only have some reaction to milk thistle if you have other problems besides your liver. I always thought that side effects can only be obtained when you take more than the prescribed milk thistle dosage.

Jensha
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 9/13/2012 7:37 AM (GMT -6)   
You mean over dose? Yeah well almost everything in the world we take so excessively has proven to kill us like the man who drank pure carrot juice everyday that caused him his death. Oh well, I guess that's one of the milk thistle benefits, we won't really have that much side effects at all.
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