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Cholestasis: 8 Natural Treatments

Cholestasis is a condition in which the flow of bile is impaired, which can lead to disorders of the liver, bile duct or pancreas. If the condition isn't properly treated, it can lead to serious health consequences. (1) Cholestasis causes vary, but the two most common causes are gallstones and malignant tumors. Cholestasis symptoms often start out as an itchy feeling, due to the interaction of serum bile acids with opiodergic nerves. Implementing cholestasis treatments can help reduce cholestasis symptoms.

Cholestatis Causes

  • Gallstones (2)
  • Malignant tumors
  • Pregnancy
  • Birth control pills
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Narrowing of the bile duct
  • Alcoholic liver disease
  • Lymphoma
  • Viral hepatitis
  • Drugs, including antibiotics

Cholestasis Symptoms

  • Itchiness
  • Jaundice
  • Pale stool
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dark urine
  • Inability to digest certain foods

Cholestatis Treatments

1. Guar Gum

Guar gum comes from the seed of the guar plant. It works as a binding and stabilizing agent to aid in cholestasis treatments. Research has shown that guar guam has the ability to prevent an increase in serum bile acids. (3)

2. Milk Thistle

Milk thistle works as a cholestasis treatment thanks to its ability to increase bile production and decrease inflammation. Studies have shown that milk thistle is an effective form of treatment in a variety of liver diseases, including cholestasis.

3. Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal has the ability to bind to chemicals and toxins in the body and flush them out before they have the chance to be absorbed. One study found that after eight days of treatment, activated charcoal lowered total bile acid concentrations in patients with ICP. (4)

4. Dandelion Root

Dandelion root is often used as a natural treatment for gallstones, one of the leading cholestasis causes. Research has shown that the vitamins and minerals dandelion root contains are able to help cleanse the liver and maintain the proper flow of bile. (5)

5. SAMe

S-adenosyl-L-methionine or SAMe, is a molecule found naturally in the body. It helps activate and break down harmful chemicals. Studies have shown that SAMe has the ability to help metabolic pathways function properly to detox the metabolic system. (6)

6. Vitamin K

Unless the liver is severely damaged, Vitamin K can be used as a cholestasis treatment to help improve blood clotting. It reduces the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins that can cause a Vitamin K deficiency, which can lead to serious health complications, especially for pregnant women with cholestasis. (7)

7. Vitamin D and Calcium

Studies have shown that many patients with cholestatic liver disease also have metabolic bone disease. To ensure the body is getting enough calcium, it's important to consume plenty of calcium-rich foods or take a high-quality calcium supplement. Vitamin D also plays an important role in calcium absorption. Spending time outdoors is the best way to increase Vitamin D levels. (8)

8. Avoid Alcohol and Drugs

Patients with cholestasis should avoid or stop using substances that are toxic to the liver, including alcohol and drugs. These substances can cause irreversible liver damage and worsen symptoms of cholestasis. Give these powerful cholestasis treatments a try!