Blessed thistle (Cnicus benedictus) is a plant that has been a part of herbal medicine since the Middle Ages. It has been used as a diuretic, a treatment for loss of appetite and indigestion, and as a stimulant for milk production in nursing mothers. Originally from the Mediterranean, this prickly plant now grows in many places throughout the world.
Health Benefits and Uses of Blessed Thistle
It is believed to help increase a low breast milk supply.
It has been used to treat diseases of the liver, gallbladder, stomach and intestines.
It is believed to decrease gas and help with indigestion.
It is used to improve appetite.
It may help with depression by elevating mood.
Blessed Thistle and Breastfeeding
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Blessed thistle is believed to be a galactagogue, taken to help make more breast milk. It appears to work best when used in combination with fenugreek, however, it can also be used with fennel, alfalfa, stinging nettle and goat's rue. Some commercially prepared teas and products such as Traditional Medicinal's Mother's Milk Tea or Motherlove's More Milk and More Milk Plus contain blessed thistle along with other herbs that promote milk production.