This wild plant is first known to have been used in ancient Greece more than 2,000 years ago. Protecting and supporting the liver is milk thistle’s most well-known benefit. “Liver Health and Milk Thistle,” Heartspring web site; http://www.heartspring.net/detoxification_liver_health.html, last accessed February 25, 2016. To grow milk thistle outdoors, spread the seed directly over the desired area in the spring or fall. https://www.tyrantfarms.com/how-to-grow-and-use-milk-thistle This is a concern to some people, because radiation waves are found in cell phones, microwaves, and other common items, though study results on the matter are inconsistent and more research is needed. By entering your e-mail you consent to subscribe to my newsletter. Your email address will not be published. After the cone heads have dried, remove them from the sack, and separate out the seeds after giving it several solid shakes and pressing down on the flower cones to separate them thoroughly. “Milk Thistle Improves Liver Health and Detoxification,” Needs web site; http://www.needs.com/product/NDNL-0608-01/a_Milk_Thistle, last accessed February 25, 2016. In North America, the flowers generally bloom from June to August, but in the southern hemisphere milk thistle flowers tend to bloom from December through February. The Greeks used milk thistle to treat snake bites and liver problems. Again, do not attempt to harvest milk thistle without wearing durable work gloves. For over 2,000 years people around the world have enjoyed milk thistle in their diet. Store dehydrated portions of the milk thistle plant in an airtight container like a Mason jar, or seal them with a vacuum sealer machine. What Are These Tiny Red Spots on My Skin (Petechiae)? Milk Thistle Protects Your Liver. It typically grows up to at least 3 feet tall. “Liver Detoxification: Fact or Fad?” Web MD web site; http://www.webmd.com/men/features/liver-detoxification—-fact-fad, last accessed February 25, 2016. The liver provides an incredibly important function in the human body. The stems taste better when eaten while the plant is still young. This survival knowledge just might save your life – or the life of someone you love. Share on Pinterest. Milk thistle is a plant that is native to Europe and was brought to North America by early colonists. The upper leaves on this wild edible ultimately clasp together at the stem. I am chuckling. This makes milk thistle versatile enough to use … The white heads that are present on the cone are known as pappus. Narayanapillai, S., et al., “Silibinin Inhibits Ultraviolet B Radiation-Induced DNA-Damage and Apoptosis by Enhancing Interleukin-12 Expression in JB6 Cells and SKH-1 Hairless Mouse Skin,” Molecular Carcinogenesis, January 2013; doi: 10.1002/mc.22000. Some people might experience loose bowels for the first few days, but this will eventually pass. Milk thistle hails from the mountain regions of the Mediterranean. Nicholas Cuplepper, a 17th century English herbalist, used the wild plant to treat jaundice and remove obstructions in both the spleen and liver. It was in both Europe and in the early days of America that milk thistle leaves had their spines removed so they could be eaten as a vegetable and tossed in salads. naturalized in North and South America and Australia. There are two peculiar features of the leaves; they have splashes of white color and they contain a milk … A drop of Mary’s milk dropped onto one of the leaves, and caused the milky veins that are present in the plant to form. Leave the flower heads inside of the bag, and hang in a cool dry place for about a week to allow them to dry thoroughly. Because milk thistle is related to ragweed, folks with seasonal allergies to this wild plant should avoid consuming it as either a fall foraging for edible or medicinal purposes. A milk thistle liver flush will help get it back on track and remove the toxic buildup. Get it back in working order so it can function at optimal levels by detoxing your liver with a milk thistle flush. Some supplement bottles containing milk thistle in capsule or pill format suggest that use of this wild edible may be safe at a level of 420 mg daily for up to 41 months. “Cell Phones and Cancer Risk,” National Cancer Institute web site, last updated February 1, 2016; http://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/causes-prevention/risk/radiation/cell-phones-fact-sheet, last accessed February 25, 2016. You will know that it is time to begin harvesting the flower cones turn begin to dry out and the purple heads on the cones turn to white. Milk thistle is a plant named for the white veins on its large prickly leaves.One of the active ingredients in milk thistle is silymarin, which is extracted from the plant's seeds. If you choose to use milk thistle, use it as directed on the package or as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or other healthcare provider. Over the years the liver gets bogged down by heavy metals, fatty foods, alcohol and chemicals, and becomes sluggish. 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