Liver Health and Estrogen Dominance
It's Not Just Alcohol and Hepatitis
While alcoholic liver cirrhosis and hepatitis C (HVC) both cause potentially fatal liver disease, they are not the major causes of liver disease. In fact, it is estimated that non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) affects 25% of the US population—81.3 million people. Just like cirrhosis of the liver caused by alcohol, NAFLD can prove fatal if left untreated. Frighteningly, until the health of the liver is severely compromised, most liver diseases go unknown and undiagnosed.
Liver and Endocrine Detoxification
As most know, the major organ involved with detoxification is the liver. Acting as a filter, blood passes through the liver and waste is eliminated through the digestive system. As the health of the liver is compromised—such as through scaring— the ability of the liver to filter and clean the blood is diminished and waste begins to accumulate in the body. As waste accumulates, previously benign compounds may become harmful as concentrations increase, and environmental toxins which the liver would normally be able to rid the body of accumulate in the body.
In this way, liver health and estrogen dominance are linked. With a healthy liver, excess estrogen is carried to the liver for filtering and expulsion through the intestine. This is an integral process for the body to keep balanced levels of sex hormones. But as the health of the liver deteriorates and the filtering ability is decreased, estrogen cannot be detoxified as efficiently as needed and accumulation occurs. Over time, this accumulation may lead to estrogen dominance (also known as estrogen toxicity).
Recently, the website Thrillist did a short piece titled “ 6 Ways You’re Destroying Your Liver that Have Nothing to do with Alcohol.” As symptoms do not occur until liver disease is advanced, the majority of liver issues go unchecked (and are not attributed to alcohol or hep C). For a healthy endocrine system, liver health is vital importance.
And it is not just estrogen dominance that can occur. Women can suffer from an overload of androgen hormones as well—there is a very real connection between polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and the health of the liver. PCOS is estimated to affect 1 in 10 women of childbearing age, and the disease can be driven by an excess of androgenic hormones.
The key point is that in understanding estrogen dominance and other endocrine disorders, it is necessary to consider the health of the liver and the many (possibly unknown) culprits that cause or contribute to liver disease—it’s not just alcohol!
Milk Thistle Seed and Liver Health
Peak Performance Estrogen Detox contains 100 milligrams of Milk Thistle Seed Extract, standardized to contain 80% silymarin (the active compound present in Milk Thistle Seed). Milk Thistle Seed has shown very promising results in a multitude of studies accessing its impact on liver health, including cirrhosis of the liver and chronic liver disease. You can read about the research at the Mayo Clinic and at Examine.com.