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Artichoke Leaf Extract Enhances Digestion of Fats
- Natural supplements can have great benefits to improve digestion
- One with great benefits is artichoke leaf extract. These benefits include: reduction of cholesterol levels and cardiovascular disease reduction
- Some side effects include: increase in stomach flatulence and possible allergic reactions
When it comes to natural supplements and their effect on health, there are certainly multiple views. Some swear by supplements, while others doubt they cause any real physiological good. People on both sides, however, have begun to appreciate the benefits of artichoke leaf extract. One of the most useful health benefits of this supplement is improved digestion of fats, but that’s only part of what it can do.
The Extract & Digestion
Although the connection between improved digestion of fats and the consumption of artichoke leaf extract may be new news to some in the West, European and Asian medical industries have long used this extract and other bitter herbs to assist in improving digestion. The question is, why does it work?
This specific benefit goes back to studies that now showed how low stomach acid production can cause problems with your digestive system. While it was once believed that having too much acid in the stomach was what resulted in bloating and nausea, the opposite has proven to be true. Artichoke leaf extract works because it helps stimulate the production of that acid.
The extract is known to stimulate the production of bile in the liver. When food enters the small intestine, bile is released to start breaking down the food for more efficient digestion. More bile is needed when you consume a great deal of fatty foods, and if enough is not present you can experience such symptoms as flatulence, constipation, and loss of appetite.
Artichoke leaf extract is also believed to be an effective way to reduce the discomfort and symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). However, another recently discovered benefit is how it contributes to the reduction of cholesterol level. In the U.K., a study involving 75 people with elevated cholesterol levels were given four capsules of artichoke leaf extract, daily, for 12 weeks. After the completion of the study, overall, cholesterol levels were reduced in the test subjects.
While the IBS benefits are likely directly connected to the increased bile production that also helps in the digestion of fats, the lower cholesterol levels are probably connected to the high levels of flavonoids found in the supplement. For more than a decade, research has shown that flavonoids (a type of antioxidant known as phytochemicals) can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Side Effects of Artichoke Leaf Extract
Of course, just because these supplements are made from all-natural products it doesn’t mean that they are free of creating possible negative side effects. The least serious is an increase in flatulence, which has been reported by some people who have taken the extract. Also, if you already have gall stones, the extract can make them worse, according to some reports. Another serious concern is the potential for allergic reactions. If you are already allergic to ragweed or similar types of flowers, you could have a much greater risk of having an allergic reaction to artichoke leaf extract. Hives, wheezing, itching, and swelling are all signs of a negative reaction.
Artichoke Leaf Extract isn’t the only natural supplement that can help digest fats. Daily Enzyme Complex helps with overall digestion.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
|Digestion Problems29 Nov 2008|