The subject of hundreds of studies - mostly focused on the effect of the plant extract in healing liver diseases and/or malfunction - milk thistle extract, and recently the oil cold pressed from the tiny seeds, has been used for millennia.
Cited in Ancient Greek and Roman medical literature, the extract of milk thistle has been used to treat everything from liver disorders to snake bites and mushroom poisoning. The National Cancer Institute (http://www.cancer.gov) now considers milk thistle a potential treatment for liver cancer, and recently milk thistle has been considered an herbal acne treatment “miracle,” as well as a potent anti-aging ingredient, due to its impressive phytontrients profile.
But where does the magical plant come from?
Silybum marianum (Milk Thistle), also known as Our Lady’s thistle, originated from Western and Central Europe and now grows generally as a weed throughout the World. The plant, belonging to the daisy family, grows 4 to 10 in. high in sunny areas with well-drained soil. It blossoms bright purple flowers at different times of the year depending on what region of the world the plant grows. The seeds, traditionally used for making the extract and now available in pure cold pressed oil, contain a high amount of flavonolignan silymarin (silybin being the most active compound), which is a widely documented antioxidant that protects cell damage by blocking toxins from entering the cell or by moving toxins out of the cell before damage begins.
Milk thistle is also rich in EFAs, with an impressive content of up to 62%, including Linolenic acid, Oleic acid, and Palmitic Acid, as well as carotenoids (2.60 µmol/kg), chlorophyll, tocopherols (464.2 µmol/kg), complex of fat polyunsaturated acids (vitamin P), plus vitamins ?, ?, ?, ?, and D and squalene (9.35 mg/kg).
Chlorophyll activates the metabolic processes in cells, thereby rejuvenating tissues and stimulating regenerative processes of the wounded skin tissue, speeding the healing.
Milk Thistle helps to heal acne, either applied topically or taken orally as a supplement, by helping the the liver expel the toxins, thus purifying the blood and balancing the skin lipids.
Studies have shown a significant improvement in skin redness, papules, itching, and hydration in skin suffering from rosacea.
As an anti-aging ingredient, Silymarin is believed to inhibit UV-induced oxidative stress in both epidermal and dermal cells, protecting the cells from damage that can cause fine lines, wrinkles and roughness.
Milk Thistle is naturally anti-inflammatory and non irritating - a great addition to formulas intended to pamper, calm, and soothe the skin.
Milk Thistle's high content of Linoleic acid puts the oil on the rare list of non-comedogenic oils. It can be applied directly to the skin as a moisturizing, nourishing, non-irritating oil that is quickly absorbed, leaving no oily residue, which helps to avoid breakouts.
Our Milk Thistle Oil comes from wild-grown plants that comply with the European Organic Soil Association's (EOSA) rigorous organic standards. The EOSA's standards mandate no chemical tolerance in food crops by banning artificial fertilizers. Instead, farmers develop fertile soil by rotating crops and using compost, manure and clover. It is also UN Certified Organic.
I have used this oil for about two months now and have found that it is the only oil that alleviates the itching of eczema. I apply it about three times a day by pouring a small amount onto my hands and rubbing it onto affected areas. It is very low odor so it is easily covered up by oils such as a sandalwood or lavender oil.