Oxidation is a fundamental problem of hemochromatosis and a major reason why individuals develop health concerns over time.
Each ingredient in Hemochromatosis Help’s Milk Thistle Supreme supports the antioxidant functions of the body with a special affinity for supporting liver health, which is the organ most vulnerable to oxidative damage from iron overload.
Additionally, the remedies in Milk Thistle Supreme have been shown to help block the absorption of dietary iron and to even lower ferritin!
Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum) is a favorite among herbalists for its strong hepatoprotective properties that support liver function and protect the body against toxins.
Powerful polyphenols found in Milk Thistle include Silymarin and Silybin, and these flavonoid compounds have been shown to benefit liver function and improve health. In particular, Silybin has been investigated in clinical research involving people with Hemochromatosis.
Specifically, Milk Thistle has been demonstrated to reduce iron absorption (which is exactly what we need!):
“In conclusion, silybin has the potential to reduce iron absorption, and this deserves further investigation, as silybin could be an adjunct in the treatment of haemochromatosis.” - Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010 Oct;64(10):1239-41.
Furthermore, another exciting benefit is Milk Thistle may help to reduce Ferritin:
“There was a significant decrease in serum ferritin from baseline to end of treatment… 78% of subjects had a decrease in serum ferritin level.” - J. Clin. Gastroenterol. 2008;42(8):937-944.
Milk Thistle Supreme contains three other key ingredients with well-established links to liver health.
ALA, NAC, and Selenium possess strong antioxidant properties on their own and help to regenerate the body’s natural antioxidant stores, including the most important antioxidant in the body, glutathione.
Clinical research very strongly supports Alpha Lipoic Acid as a potent antioxidant. Additionally, multiple studies have found a benefit of this helpful nutrient specifically in iron overload.
“Antioxidant supplementation could reduce organ damage and premature death in patients with iron overload... We conclude that Lipoic Acid is highly effective in reversing oxidative stress arising from iron overload.” - Redox Rep. 2008;13(1):2-10.
Further research has demonstrated that Alpha Lipoic Acid improves glutathione levels and reduces iron-mediated oxidant production:
“Our results suggest Lipoic Acid may be useful in reducing complications from iron overload.” - Blood 106.11 (2005): 3599.
As a precursor nutrient, NAC promotes the synthesis of glutathione in the body. Glutathione, considered by many to be the body’s most important antioxidant, works inside our cells to neutralize free radicals and reduce inflammation.
Unfortunately, many factors in our lives deplete our body’s glutathione, leading to a cycle of oxidative stress and cellular damage. Stress, genetics, environmental pollution, poor food choices, and disease can all use up the body’s glutathione reserves.
Guess what else depletes the body’s levels of glutathione? Iron!
In hemochromatosis, therefore, excess iron in the body not only causes oxidative damage by promoting free radicals, but it also works to lower one of the best defenders against the damage, glutathione. This one-two punch caused by iron may significantly contribute to the problems of hemochromatosis.
Raising glutathione levels in people with hemochromatosis has been strongly associated with better health and results. Research has shown glutathione to help reduce liver and heart damage along with improved overall antioxidant function in iron overload.
While our bodies do make their own glutathione, one of the best ways to supplement our glutathione levels is by taking NAC; a well-established precursor molecule demonstrated to boost gluathione levels in the body.
Research demonstrates that selenium deficiency has a profound effect on iron levels, as well as other minerals. In one study, researchers found that if selenium levels are low:
The researchers concluded:
“These results suggest that selenium deficiency may cause a secondary overload of iron and unbalanced distribution of other minerals.” - Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 1995 Feb;59(2):302-6.
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