The liver is one of the body’s most important organs and helps remove toxins and waste. Having a healthy liver is essential for optimizing health.
Here are the best science supported supplements for liver health found in Liver Support by Beyond Vita®:
1. Milk Thistle (Silymarin)
Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) is a herb native to Europe and Asia. It’s seeds have been traditionally used to aid liver health.
Milk thistle extract can help reduce liver injury caused by toxins, alcohol and infections. Additionally, it has been used to treat toxin induced liver disease and viral hepatitis.1
In addition, silymarin can help increase cellular vitality and reduce cellular necrosis in those who abuse alcohol. It is also able to antagonize the progression of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.2
A 2016 study suggests that milk thistle extract can help improve liver function in people with liver disease by inhibiting certain cellular pathways.3 It may also increase the survival rate of patients with cirrhotic alcoholism.4
Milk thistle can help protect the liver and promote liver health.
NAC, also known as N-Acetyl Cysteine, is a form of the amino acid L-cysteine that is often used as a supplement due it’s action as an antioxidant and ability to boost glutathione levels.
A 2015 review found that NAC reduced inflammation and oxidative stress in liver disease patients.5
In another study researchers found that NAC can positively effect liver function markers.6
NAC has also been shown to improve liver function in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in a trial with 30 participants.7
Additionally NAC may help protect the liver from damage due to liver toxic drugs.8
NAC can help protect the liver from damage and improve liver function markers.
Traditionally, artichoke (Cynara scolymus L.) has been used for liver protection.
Artichoke extract can stimulate bile production in the liver to help carry toxic compounds away which can help protect the liver.9
In a 2018 double-blind randomized controlled study on 100 patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, researchers found artichoke leaf extract decreased liver enzymes (AST and ALT) levels, liver fat and liver damage.10
Artichoke may help reduce liver damage and improve liver health.
Alpha-lipoic acid, also known as ALA and lipoic acid, is a compound made by the body and found in all human cells. It acts as a powerful antioxidant to reduce damage from free radicals.
Researchers in a 2019 double-blind randomized placebo-controlled trial on 50 patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease found that alpha-lipoic acid supplementation improved liver enzyme levels.18
Alpha-lipoic acid may help protect the liver from damage.
Schisandra (Schisandra chinensis), also known as Schizandra, is a vine native to China and Russia that produces a berry which is used in traditional Chinese medicine.
Schisandra has traditionally been used to treat liver diseases and aid liver function.
Researchers have reported that schisandra may be effective for preventing the development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.19
Schisandra has also been shown to help prevent alcohol induced fatty liver disease.20
In a 2013 study with 45 participants with high liver enzymes taking a combination of schisandra fruit extract and sesamin, researchers reported that liver enzymes and fatty liver were both significantly improved following supplementation.21
Schisandra may help improve liver function and health.
Choline is a nutrient that is required for optimal health.
Having a diet low in choline can cause the development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.25
In a 2014 observational study on 56,195 people, researchers found that higher dietary choline intake was associated with a lower risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.26
In a diet lacking dietary choline, 77% of men and 80% of postmenopausal women develop non-alcoholic fatty liver.31
Choline may help prevent fatty liver and promote liver health.
Inositol can benefit the liver by helping to inhibit the buildup of triglycerides and because of this action it might help prevent the development of fatty liver disease.32 Another study also supports this finding.33
Inositol may help prevent the build up of fat in the liver.
Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus), also known as the European blueberry, is a berry producing shrub native to northern Europe and parts of North America.
In a 2011 study, researchers found bilberry can decrease oxidative stress in the liver and help reduce liver fibrosis.34
Researchers in a 2015 study also found an anthocyanin rich bilberry extract was able to lessen the development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease by reducing liver fat accumulation, inflammation and fibrosis.35
In a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial involving 74 participants with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, researchers found that anthocyanin was able to improve the signs of liver injury. The researchers concluded that anthocyanin could have an application in helping patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.36
Bilberry may help protect the liver and promote liver health.
L-methionine is an an essential amino acid that plays an important role in the body.
L-methionine is needed to make SAMe (S-Adenosyl-l-methionine) which serves an important function in the liver. It is able to exert protective effects on the mitochondria inside liver cells which can help prevent damage due to oxidative stress.39
A 2014 study suggests that maintaining SAMe levels could be a possible treatment for alcoholic and non-alcoholic liver cirrhosis.40
Another study found that methionine shows liver protective properties.41
L-methionine may help protect the lever.
10. Curcumin and Turmeric
Curcumin is the key bioactive curcuminoid found in the roots of the turmeric plant (Curcuma longa) that has a long history in traditional medicine.
In a 2016 randomized placebo-controlled trial on patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, researchers found that curcumin supplementation was associated with a 79% reduction in liver fat content after 8 weeks.44
A 2019 meta-analysis of 6 randomized controlled trials reported curcumin reduces liver enzyme levels in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. High levels of liver enzymes are a marker for liver stress and damage.45
Curcumin may help improve liver health by reducing liver damage.
CoQ10, also known as coenzyme Q10, is an important compound that plays many vital roles in the body including energy generation.
In a randomized double-blind placebo controlled trial of 44 participants with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, 4 weeks of CoQ10 supplementation was able to significantly decrease liver enzyme levels.48
Another study reported CoQ10 could be effective in improving non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and decreasing systemic inflammation.49
Researchers also claim CoQ10 can control liver fat metabolism and inhibit the accumulation of fat in the liver which may prevent the progression of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.50
CoQ10 may help improve liver health by reducing liver enzyme levels.
12. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 supplementation may improve non-alcoholic fatty liver.51
In a 2012 meta-analysis of 9 studies involving 355 participants, omega-3 supplementation was found to decrease liver fat in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.52
Omega-3 fatty acids may help improve liver health and reduce liver fat in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
These are the best science-backed supplements to promote liver function and health.*
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