Does Milk Thistle Help With Diabetes? – Benefits it Provides

It has been proven that milk thistle could help manage diabetes by treating insulin resistance. Medical experts suggested that milk thistle, combined with traditional treatment, can improve diabetes. The study shows a decrease in blood sugar levels and an improvement in cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes. Does Milk Thistle Help With Diabetes?

Milk Thistle Seeds and Flowers
Milk Thistle Seeds and Flowers

Milk Thistle and Diabetes

Several scientific studies prove its efficiency in the cure for hepatitis, cirrhosis, and protection from liver damage. It has also been of great help to combat cancer and high cholesterol as well as diabetes. Silymarin is known to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which helps the liver to grow new cells and repair the old.

In recent times, people have been finding alternative ways to prevent or treat illnesses including diabetes. The reason is that most synthetic medicines have a higher rate of causing undesirable side effects.

If you are one of those people who would want a safer, yet equally effective way to manage one’s health, a daily dose of milk thistle extract is just for you. Give it a try, but I would check with your doctor in case you’re leery.

Milk thistle also is known as Silymarin, which is a flowering plant that belongs to the daisy family. This plant is plentiful in certain regions of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East. Just like any other plant that belongs to this genus, milk thistles have a tall erect stem. It has a large alternate leaf which has waxy parts with thorny points.

Besides the folks, there is science behind this plant and diabetes treatment. This supplement offers a guard against diabetes and diabetes-related complications, such as kidney damage and blood vessel damage. Moreover, it is rich in antioxidants which might assist in the treatment of diabetes. It was discovered in an animal study which indicated that the supplement slowed the progression of diabetic nephropathy in rats.

Another research which included people with type 2 diabetes who for four months participated by including a supplement containing silymarin along with their conventional drug routine. This group of people showed a marked decrease in total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol. Their blood sugar levels appeared to be better regulated when using the milk thistle extract.

Skin Cancer
Skin Cancer

Also, there is yet another useful application of milk thistle which may be of help in skin-cancer prevention. If you apply it to the skin in combination with sunscreen it was shown to produce antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and immune system regulating properties. Furthermore, the herb showed an ability to inhibit several tumor-promoters involved in skin cancer growth.

Milk Thistle extract originated from the plant’s seeds. The extract which is gotten from the seeds has high medicinal value. As a complex mixture of polyphenolic molecules, has been clinically proven to treat type II diabetes when taken at high doses. Additionally, milk thistle is said to treat patients diagnosed with hepatitis C at an even higher dose. But taking high doses of this supplement would require a doctor’s order as it could cause some adverse reactions.

However, if you want to take it as a daily supplement, an average of 420 to 480 mg per day is recommended. As the key element in cell membranes, phosphatidylcholine helps milk thistle attach easily to cell membranes. This helps to keep toxins away from entering liver cells.

Milk thistle plant benefits the liver because it produces a hepatoprotective effect by stimulating ribonucleic acid (RNA) and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) mixture and scavenges pro-oxidant free radicals and increase the intracellular concentration of glutathione, a substance needed to detoxify hepatic cell reactions, therefore altering the outer membrane of the hepatic cells.

Also, it is said to exert an anti-inflammatory effect on the platelets. Whether you may or may not totally understand the details, the bottom line which is important is that milk thistle is very beneficial for your liver and that’s what matters, especially when you have diabetes.

Blood Sugar Levels
Blood Sugar Levels

Theoretical studies prove that this plant may lower blood sugar levels, so people with diabetes, hypoglycemia, and those taking medications or supplements that affect blood sugar levels should be very careful when using it. It has been established that milk thistle can reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives.

The constituent of this herb or plant can slow down an enzyme called beta-glucuronides, which is involved in the activity of oral contraceptives. To be safe one should always consult the doctor as to how much milk thistle you should intake! Be cautious please!

Because of such action in the body, milk thistle extract is used to prevent, treat, or delay the progress of liver dysfunction including damage caused by acute viral hepatitis or long-term phenothiazine use, dyspepsia, spleen disorders, and gallbladder disorders.

One particular health benefit of milk thistle includes a decrease of increased total and high-density lipoprotein levels and as an antidote for Amanita mushroom poisoning. Additional claims include: as an oral steroid for bodybuilders, helps to control blood cholesterol levels, reducing the resistance of diabetic patients to insulin, slows the progress of cancer, and it reduces liver damage caused by exposure to chemo drugs. The set of latter claims though that it does require more evidence to establish its accuracy.

It is safe to take milk thistle extract that has been processed to a tablet or as a part of an ingredient of a food supplement. However, as soon as you see some allergic reactions when taking thistle milk supplements, stop it immediately and consult your doctor. Milk thistle extract to babies is not yet established, hence extra protections should be made when giving the said plant extract to women who are pregnant or lactating because of the safety of!

Milk Thistle does not harm the liver, instead it protects your liver. Its’ extract might reduce the risk of death and improve liver function in people with cirrhosis according to experts. However, milk thistle extract does not seem to benefit all patients with liver disease, but only kidney disease in people with diabetes.

Other Benefits of Milk Thistle:

It is of great importance to know other health benefits of milk thistle that we can benefit from milk thistle targeting other vital organs in the body. This is vital for your health. Here now are the other health benefits of milk thistle that you may be hearing for the first time:

Diabetes and Its’ Complications

Recent researches found out that milk thistle has the ability to inhibit aldose reductase. The enzyme aldose reductase is responsible for the deposition of sugar in the eyes of diabetics. This will eventually progress to diabetic retinopathy.

The ability of silymarin to scavenge free radicals is protective in nature against diabetic retinopathy caused by excess sugars in the eyes. Your eyes and vision are so important that you need to protect them in every way you can.

Gallbladder and Gallstones

The silymarin in milk thistle has been found to help promote the flow of bile by increasing its solubility. This is beneficial in treating or preventing gallstones. Whenever the flow of bile is increased, the chances of developing a gallstone are decreased. Studies have also shown that taking milk thistle has resulted in a pronounced reduction of cholesterol in the bile.

Gallbladder problems and gallstones are not something you want to experience. I had pain from my gallbladder and had to have it removed. Milk thistle may have helped me before I began to develop gallbladder issues.



Few people understand the liver’s role in weight reduction. Boosting liver function is badly neglected in virtually all weight loss programs. The liver is the primary organ involved in purifying the blood of impurities and in metabolizing fat. With silymarin’s boosting action on the liver, metabolism of fat will be faster and it will be of great help in losing weight.

Estrogen-Related Diseases

Most of the breast tumors are directly related to the hormone estrogen. According to studies, when the liver is functioning properly, bad forms of estrogen can be filtered from the body. The silymarin of milk thistle controls the risk of estrogen-related diseases like breast tumors.

The women’s estrogen and progesterone peaks and valleys are bringing different tumors in the women’s reproductive organs including the uterus and ovaries. The ability of milk thistle to regulate hormonal imbalance as to estrogen helps in preventing the said diseases.

Psoriasis and Skin Itchiness

We already know that the liver filters the toxins present in our blood. We also know that the skin is the largest organ in the body and is a very important organ of detoxification. Psoriasis has been linked to certain toxic substances which circulate throughout the bloodstream.

There is some evidence to suggest that abnormal liver function may play a role in the development of psoriasis. The itchiness, on the other hand, is also related to the blood toxins being removed through the skin.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

There are many possible pathologies to be considered in a person with chronic fatigue syndrome. Psychological factors like depression and anxiety play crucial, but medical problems are equally important. Studies discovered that chronic fatigue syndrome can be due to a poorly functioning liver.

If a liver is damaged, the immune system is compromised causing infections and toxins in our bloodstream. That’s another reason why milk thistle is important for your liver.

Unhealthy Eating Habits and Lifestyle

Junk Food
Junk Food

Many of us eat diets that are too high in fat and protein, take over-the-counter or prescription drugs, and routinely expose ourselves to radiation and other pollutants. We seldom exercise and are very much stressed. All of these can damage the liver and can cause serious health problems.

Taking care of our liver by taking milk thistle as a supplement in our daily diet can have a huge impact on our immune system and our natural healing and defensive capacities. With a healthy liver, our body is well protected and we can enjoy a happy and fulfilling life.

Milk Thistle Side Effects

The side effects are a part of any medication that cannot be overlooked. Milk thistle side effects include indigestion, headache, and itching. People with known allergies to daisy flower, artichokes, kiwis, common thistle might also be allergic to milk thistle.

Other side effects of milk thistle include:

  • Abdominal bloating/pain
  • Allergic reactions
  • Diarrhea
  • Gas
  • Indigestion
  • Itching
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea

Final Thoughts

Does Milk Thistle Help With Diabetes? Milk thistle can help lower your blood sugars and help with your type 2 diabetes. And an important thing to remember is that milk thistle is also beneficial for your liver and that is going to help you with your diabetes as well. Helping your liver is an additional benefit!

Check Out Below the Best Way

to Lower Your Blood Sugar Fast!

Please share on social media below and forward this to others who need help and please leave any questions or comments you may have below. I would love to interact with you. Thank you for reading and I appreciate it!


Bestseller No. 1
Blood Sugar
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Rothchild, Sascha (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 336 Pages - 04/19/2022 (Publication Date) - G.P. Putnam's Sons (Publisher)
SaleBestseller No. 2
Blood Glucose Monitor Kit - Diabetes Testing Kit with 1 Glucometer, 100 Blood Sugar Test Strips, 1 Lancing Device, 100 Lancets, Travel Case for Blood Glucose Meter and Diabetic Supplies
28,403 Reviews
Blood Glucose Monitor Kit - Diabetes Testing Kit with 1 Glucometer, 100 Blood Sugar Test Strips, 1 Lancing Device, 100 Lancets, Travel Case for Blood Glucose Meter and Diabetic Supplies
  • ✅ QUICK AND EASY TO USE: Care Touch blood sugar test kit delivers results in only 5 seconds with just a 0.5µL blood sample. There is no programming needed since our blood sugar monitor kit automatically recognizes batch codes encrypted on Care Touch glucose test strips. Our state-of-the-art glucometer kit with strips and lancets includes single-touch strip ejection, so you can hygienically remove used diabetic test strips.
  • ✅ EASY DIABETIC MONITORING: The blood sugar monitor kit with strips is capable of saving up to 300 readings. The blood glucose test kit also provides a continuous 14-day average of your readings, making glucose monitoring easy for you and your healthcare provider.
  • ✅ PORTABLE AND HASSLE-FREE: The diabetic testing kit comes with a handy glucometer case, which means you can check your blood sugar level at home or anywhere else while staying organized. The 10-depth lancing device and lancets will help make blood sugar testing almost painless and hassle-free.
  • ✅ COMPLETE DIABETIC SET: The glucose meter kit with strips and lancets includes: (1) Care Touch Blood Sugar Meter, (100) Blood Glucose Test Strips for diabetes, (1) Lancing Device, (100) Lancets for diabetes testing, (1) 3 Volt Lithium Battery, (1) Glucose meter case for your blood sugar tester and diabetic supplies
  • ✅ WE CARE BECAUSE YOU CARE: You care about your health, and we care about you. Care Touch is committed to providing the best quality blood glucose monitoring systems. Our care doesn’t end when your sugar tester diabetes kit arrives at your door. We’re fully dedicated to your satisfaction. If you have any questions or concerns about your glucose monitor kit with strips and lancets - contact us at any time.
Bestseller No. 3
Ed Gamble Blood Sugar
69 Reviews
Ed Gamble Blood Sugar
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)
Bestseller No. 4
Blood Sugar Formula - 17 Natural Ingredients for Healthy Blood Sugar Levels & Support Healthy Blood Pressure with Chromium, Berberine and Cinnamon - PureHealth Research, 90 Capsules
85 Reviews
Blood Sugar Formula - 17 Natural Ingredients for Healthy Blood Sugar Levels & Support Healthy Blood Pressure with Chromium, Berberine and Cinnamon - PureHealth Research, 90 Capsules
  • PUREHEALTH RESEARCH - Blood Sugar Formula 3 Bottles
  • A DOCTOR-APPROVED NATURAL FORMULA. Seventeen potent ingredients, each scientifically proven to have a significant effect at helping balance your glucose levels, improve glucose sensitivity, protect delicate cells from free radicals, and energy
  • HIGH POTENCY. PureHealth Research experts scientifically enhance CHROMIUM with the Vitamin C, E, Mulberry Leaf, Bitter Melon, Cinnamon, L-Taurine, Berberin and other ingredients which are proven to help you support healthy blood glucose levels
  • ONE CAPSULE DAILY, THREE BENEFITS: supports healthy sugar and carb absorption, supports insulin levels, supports cardiovascular health
SaleBestseller No. 5
Arazo Nutrition Blood Sugar 365 Supplement - 120 Herbal Pills - 120 Day Supply
8,416 Reviews
Arazo Nutrition Blood Sugar 365 Supplement - 120 Herbal Pills - 120 Day Supply
  • Scientifically formulated; great care was put into combining just the right amount of 20 different ingredients into a premium formula designed to support healthy blood sugar levels
  • High potency support for 365 days a year; the unique combination in this blend is crafted to help support healthy glucose absorption and glucose production by your body; contains Gymnema, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Yarrow, Licorice, Cayenne, Banaba, Guggul, Bitter Melon, Juniper Berry, White Mulberry, L-Taurine & more
  • One capsule twice a day, five benefits; (1) supports normal blood sugar levels; (2) supports weight control and energy; (3) supports healthy sugar and carb absorption; (4) supports insulin levels; (5) supports heart health; daily support for healthy blood glucose levels, 365 days a year
  • Reliable; made in a GMP certified facility in America and third party safety tested for purity
  • Great value for money; 120 vegetarian capsules for a 60 days supply

Last update on 2022-06-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Home » Health Tips » Does Milk Thistle Help With Diabetes? – Benefits it Provides

Rob Sciubba

Rob Sciubba - Founder of

Rob is an blogger who has type 2 diabetes and wants to spread the word treating diabetes. For the past 3 years he has provided valuable information about diabetes and lowering blood sugars and continues to offer additional ways to treat diabetes.

If you’re serious about treating your diabetes and lowering your blood sugars the natural ways, then you will learn from his website.

10 thoughts on “Does Milk Thistle Help With Diabetes? – Benefits it Provides”

  1. Hello and thank you for this informative and thorough article. It was very well written. I enjoyed reading it. I have a friend who had problem with diabetes since his early childhood. I learned so much about this disease because of my friendship with him. As far as I know him, he never ate anything sweet – unlike us other kids.

    He also has Diabetes 2 and he is using milk thistle as a way of lowering his blood sugar. I did not know how deep are the effects of milk thistle and how it can actually influence DNA and RNA. That is really amazing.

     Also, really incredible how healthy this thing is. It helps with obesity amongst other things. That is just wow.


    • Than you so much for saying! Anytime I can help someone who has diabetes lower their sugar a natural way, it is just a great feeling!

      Milk Thistle is another way of helping to lower and control blood glucose levels. There are too many medications being dished out today and the natural ways are the better ways to go.

      Milk thistle can affect more than DNA and RNA. It provides many other benefits for your body in additional to treating type 2 diabetes. Losing weight is just another huge benefit.

      Thank you for sharing 😉

  2. Hi. I was quite familiar with silymarin because I had some liver problems in the past and my doctor recommended it. But I had no idea it was the same thing as Milk thistle – nor that it has so many benefits for diabetes and blood sugar. I like to take herbs as supplements, it’s easier for me. Could you recommend me a good supplement based on Milk Thistle? Other than the one I’ve used. I checked out Glucocil, but it doesn’t have any silymarin, does it?

    • Hi Heather 🙂

      Yes they are the same thing. I always prefer supplements for treating diabetes than medications.

      They are natural and you have much less issues with supplements than drugs. Milk thistle is a wonderful supplement that can help. But the one other supplement that I take happens to be Glucocil! 

      Even though it doesn’t not contain silymarin, it’s a wonderful addition to milk thistle and really works with lowering my blood sugars! 

      You can check it out HERE!

      Thanks for your thoughts! 🙂

  3. I always enjoy coming back to this website because it is always full of new information.  As a diabetic its always nice to learn new things that might possibly help me enough to get off my meds one day.

    Once again, I need to talk to my Dr. before I try anything new, but you can bet that conversation is going to happen.

    Thank you for writing another very enjoyable article.


    • Hey Dale,

      Thank you for coming back! Every time I post a new article it’s in hopes that I help someone learn something.

      Milk thistle is something that can help lower blood sugar and aid in controlling diabetes. It’s a huge help with regards to maintaining a healthy blood glucose level.

      And you are correct! Nobody should ever try anything without first consulting their physician!

      I wish you luck and thank you for your comments! 😉

  4. I can’t believe I’ve never heard of this yet before. I think that most people with type 2 diabetes should give this a try with adequate exercise and proper diet before going on those medication regimen, such as Metformin and other diabetic medications.  I love that milk thistle provides other benefits other than controlling blood sugar levels because even those medications cannot do that for patients.  About how much does this supplement decrease our blood sugar levels? I’m definitely sharing this with my mother in law who has type 2 diabetes.

    • Hi Mutsumi 🙂

      Milk thistle is yet another plant that can be beneficial to lowering your blood sugar. It’s another additive to a healthy lifestyle and exercise regimen on the road to controlling diabetes.

      Nobody likes taking medications and diseases such as type 2 diabetes should be and can be controlled with natural methods such as plant products like milk thistle.

      Milk thistle will not cure your diabetes but it sure can lend a helping hand when it comes to a natural way to control your diabetes. 

      I appreciate your comments! Thank you 🙂

  5. This is a great article for me to run across. I have high cholesterol and liver problems. I will have to try this milk thistle. I hope it does what the studies show. I have suffered with this for years and have been on a lot of different medications. But a natural remedy is what I really want.

    • Hi Cory, 

      I’m glad you found this article. I’m sorry that you’re having issues with your liver and cholesterol.

      Milk thistle is good for a a great many issues and lowering blood sugar is one of them.

      But it can also be useful for helping to treat issues with your liver and cholesterol as well.

      Natural remedies such as milk thistle sure do beat taking medications!

      Appreciate your insight! Thanks! 🙂


Leave a Comment