Milk Thistle
Milk Thistle

Milk Thistle is a declared noxious weed of SA, VIC, TAS and WA.

During the16th century the milk thistle became quite popular and almost all parts of it were eaten. The roots can be eaten raw or boiled and buttered or par-boiled and roasted. The young shoots in spring can be cut down to the root and boiled and buttered. The spiny bracts on the flower head were eaten in the past like globe artichoke, and the stems (after peeling) can be soaked overnight to remove bitterness and then stewed. The leaves can be trimmed of prickles and boiled and make a good spinach substitute or they can also be added raw to salads.

Silymarin is the main active ingredient in milk thistle. It is both an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant but its effects on the body are unclear and people should consult their doctor before consuming, as adverse effects such as anaphylaxis due to allergy can result.

It is claimed that milk thistle can assist in healing some liver ailments but this is as yet unproven. It is also claimed that milk thistle, combined with traditional treatment, can improve diabetes. Talk to your doctor before taking any milk thistle as it may interfere with your medication.

We are not health professionals, medical doctors, nor are we nutritionists. It is up to the reader to verify nutritional information and health benefits with qualified professionals for this edible plant.


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