— Seven of Eleven Products Fail Testing Of Herb Used in Diabetes and Liver Diseases —

White Plains, NY,November 26, 2012 — Recent tests by of eleven milk thistle supplements show that only four met's quality standards. One product had an unacceptable amount of lead and six products did not contain expected amounts of silymarin compounds, which are believed to be the active constituents of milk thistle. Studies suggest silymarin may be helpful in type 2 diabetes, certain liver conditions, and may protect the liver from toxic effects of chemotherapy. While most products claimed that their milk thistle extracts were standardized to 80% silymarin, found actual amounts to range from 48% to 67%. Sales of milk thistle in the U.S. were $108 million in 2011, up 10.2% from the prior year according to the latest figures from Nutrition Business Journal.

Many supplement makers appear to be using substandard milk thistle extract ingredient in their products. This can happen if they rely on non-specific tests, such as UV spectrophotometric analysis, which falsely inflate the silymarin content of an extract by counting other compounds that are not silymarin. In contrast, used a highly specific HPLC method to test the products. Some milk thistle ingredient suppliers offer a higher-priced extract (certified with the HPLC test) and a lower-priced extract (certified with the non-specific UV test). The FDA does not set standards for the quality of herbal supplements nor specify how they must be tested, so manufacturers may choose either form of milk thistle. Consumers normally have no way of knowing which form they purchase other than from's independent reports.'s Product Review of Milk Thistle Supplements can be found at The report provides information on how to choose and use these supplements as well as test results, quality ratings, and product comparisons for the following eleven supplements selected for testing by

         Bluebonnet Herbals Milk Thistle Extract

         Dr. Whitaker Milk Thistle Liver Cleanse

         Jarrow Formulas Milk Thistle Extract 30:1

         Natrol Milk Thistle Advantage

         Natural Factors Milk Thistle Extract 80% Silymarin

         Nature's Plus Milk Thistle Extended Release

         NutriCology Phyllanthus Complex

         Pure Encapsulations Silymarin Milk Thistle Extract

         Rainbow Light Milk Thistle Plus

         Shaklee Liver DTX Complex

         Trunature (Costco) Milk Thistle is a leading provider of consumer information and independent evaluations of products that affect health and nutrition. Reviews of other popular types of supplements are available from Subscription to is availableonline. The company is privately held and based in Westchester, New York. It has no ownership from, or interest in, companies that manufacture, distribute, or sell consumer products.