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What is silymarin and what are the benefits of silymarin?

Kas yra margainis ir kuo naudingas silimarinas?


Silybum marianum is a plant of the Asteraceae family that originates from the Mediterranean Sea. It has purple flowers and leaves that are speckled with white spots along the veins [1]. Since ancient times, it has been said that the white spots on the leaves were caused by St. A drop of the Virgin Mary's milk. Because of this legend with Mary's milk, many were convinced that the milkweed could stimulate the production of breast milk [2]. Now variegated is valued for other useful properties. It is highly valued for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and is mostly used to maintain good liver and gallbladder health. Seeds, fruits, stems, roots, needles, leaves and flowers are used for traditional consumption. The substances contained in the mullein help to stabilize cell membranes and facilitate the elimination of toxins from the body [3].

Bioactive components

The main group of active compounds in marjoram are known as silymarins. Although silymarin is found in the flowers and leaves of the plant, it is most abundant in the seeds. The health benefits of marjoram are thought to be related to the antioxidant and antiviral properties of silymarin [1]. Silymarin may have an antioxidant effect by scavenging or preventing reactive molecules called free radicals that contribute to cell damage and disease development. It also has the ability to reduce inflammatory processes in the body [4]. This is also proven by scientific research, during one of the studies, the antioxidant activity of 16 compounds contained in silymarin was evaluated, it was observed that taxifolin, silycristine and silydianins had the highest antioxidant activity.

Silymarin helps protect against oxidative damage. To protect against oxidative damage, it is important to maintain a good ratio/balance between oxidants and antioxidants. Oxidative damage is associated with diseases such as atherosclerosis, diabetes, cancer, liver cirrhosis, etc. [12].

In addition to silymarin, other substances such as flavonoids are found in true marigolds, which also have anti-inflammatory, antiviral properties, which may make them useful for maintaining good heart function and blood vessel health. Not only individual flavonoids, but their derivatives are also found: apigenin, chrysoeriol, eriodictyol (flavones) and taxifolin, quercetin, dihydrokaempferol, kaempferol (flavanols) [11].

Liver health

The most researched benefits of true mullein in improving liver health . Some studies show that the plant can help manage viral hepatitis, alcoholic fatty liver disease, liver cancer, and liver damage caused by drugs or toxins. However, it has not been found to prevent these liver diseases [5]. Although the actual mechanism of action of silymarin is not fully understood, silymarin extracted from the plant is believed to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antiviral effects. For example, one research review states that silymarin may extend the life expectancy of people with cirrhosis of the liver by protecting the liver from free radicals produced during alcohol metabolism. However, until more research is done by scientists, doctors do not recommend the use of mullein as a primary remedy for liver ailments. However, it can be a useful adjunct, especially if approved by a healthcare professional [6].

Bloggers cholesterol control

High cholesterol can cause heart health problems and increase the chance of stroke. Some studies have found that marjoram may affect blood cholesterol levels.

in 2006 a study conducted suggests that milk silymarin may play a role in lowering cholesterol. It was found that people who took the real mole had lower cholesterol levels than those who took a placebo [13].

in 2016 in the study, researchers fed rats a high-cholesterol diet. They gave some rats 300 and 600 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) of silybin (the active ingredient in true mullein) and found that total cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood were significantly lower [14].


It is also being studied for its potential antidiabetic effects [7]. A review of studies found that silymarin supplements significantly reduced fasting blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. True marjoram may help control blood sugar levels by improving insulin sensitivity and reducing diabetes-related inflammation.

However, although the results of existing studies are promising, larger, well-designed studies are needed to investigate the use of these extracts and teas in diabetes [8].

Weight control

An animal study conducted in 2016 showed that silymarin reduced the weight of mice. This suggests that mottled may be beneficial for those on a diet. However, scientists need to conduct more studies to confirm the effect of this plant on human weight loss [9].


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 Surai PF. Silymarin as a natural antioxidant: An overview of the current evidence and perspectives. Antioxidants (Basel) [Internet]. 2015;4(1):204–47. Available from:

 Abenavoli L, Izzo AA, Milić N, Cicala C, Santini A, Capasso R. Milk thistle (Silybum marianum): A concise overview on its chemistry, pharmacological, and nutraceutical uses in liver diseases: Milk Thistle and liver diseases. Phytother Res [Internet]. 2018;32(11):2202–13. Available from:

 Federico A, Dallio M, Loguercio C. Silymarin/silybin and chronic liver disease: A marriage of many years. Molecules [Internet]. 2017;22(2):191. Available from:

 Voroneanu L, Nistor I, Dumea R, Apetrii M, Covic A. Silymarin in type 2 diabetes mellitus: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. J Diabetes Res [Internet]. 2016;2016:5147468. Available from:

 Kazazis CE, Evangelopoulos AA, Kollas A, Vallianou NG. The therapeutic potential of milk thistle in diabetes. Rev Diabet Stud [Internet]. 2014 Summer;11(2):167–74. Available from:

 Guo Y, Wang S, Wang Y, Zhu T. Silymarin improved diet-induced liver damage and insulin resistance by decreasing inflammation in mice. Pharm Biol [Internet]. 2016;54(12):2995–3000. Available from:

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EMEA. Assessment report on Silybum marianum (L.) Gaertn., fructus. 5 June 2018. Available from:

Anthony KP, Saleh MA. Free Radical Scavenging and Antioxidant Activities of Silymarin Components. Antioxidants. 2013, 2, 398-407.

Huseini HF, Larijani B, Heshmat R, Fakhrzadeh H, Radjabipour B, Toliat T, Raza M. The efficacy of Silybum marianum (L.) Gaertn. (silymarin) in the treatment of type II diabetes: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, clinical trial. Phytother Res. 2006 Dec;20(12):1036-9. doi: 10.1002/ptr.1988. PMID: 17072885.

Gobalakrishnan S, Asirvatham SS, Janarthanam V. Effect of Silybin on Lipid Profile in Hypercholesterolaemic Rats. J Clin Diagn Res. 2016 Apr;10(4):FF01-5. doi: 10.7860/JCDR/2016/16393.7566. Epub 2016 Apr 1. PMID: 27190826; PMCID: PMC4866124.

The information presented in the article is not the personal opinion of the author, nor is this information intended to promote nutritional supplements. The article contains only general information that is not related to a person's decision to purchase and/or use food supplements. If you suffer from a specific disease, take additional medications or nutritional supplements, be sure to consult your family doctor or pharmacist before taking any new nutritional supplements. We recommend that decisions related to personal health be taken personally or consulted with a family doctor after assessing your personal health condition.