Bilberry Protects the Liver and helps to maintain healthy circulation and eye health, along with quite a few other healh benefits such as acting as an anti-oxidant and lowering cholesterol levels. Research on mice suggests that bilberry might also protect the liver from damage.
One study found that 15 days of bilberry treatment reduced oxidative damage that had been induced in the liver or mice. Another study gave mice either 50, 100, or 200 mg/kg body weight of bilberry extracted for 42.04% anthocyanins, the main active constituent of bilberries, for 5 days. All dosage levels increased glutathione and vitamin C levels while reducing malondialdehyde levels in the liver. In other words, all of the dosage levels attentuated oxidative damage in the liver. The highest dose of 200 mg/kg body weight actually eliminated liver damage (stress-induced in the mice).
Bilberry may or may not have the same effects or effects of the same magnitude in humans. Bilberry isn’t the only herbal supplement known to boost anti-oxidant activity in the liver, and it is probably not the most potent. However, many people take bilberry for other reasons and liver protection is a nice side benefit. Bilberry could also potentially make a good combination with other ingredients in a liver health blend.
1. Bao L, Yao XS, Yau CC, Tsi D, Chia CS, Nagai H, & Kurihara H. (2008). Protective effects of bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus L.) extract on restraint stress-induced liver damage in mice. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 56(17), 7803-7.
2. Domitrovic R, & Jakovac H. (2011). Effects of standardized bilberry fruit extract (Mirtoselect’) on resolution of CCl4-induced liver fibrosis in mice. Food and Chemical Toxicology : an International Journal Published for the British Industrial Biological Research Association. 49(4), 848-54.
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