If you’re in the market for a liver supplement then you may have stumbled across LiverMD by 1MD. It claims to radically improve liver health. But what exactly is included in it? And is it safe? Let’s find out.
Our Summary: 4.7/5
“A high quality liver supplement. Formulated by doctors. There is evidence to suggest that the ingredients could help with liver health”
ARTICLE AT A GLANCE: In this article we’ll examine the research behind LiverMD, any possible side effects and whether its safe to consume. Lastly we’ll take a look at the doctor backing LiverMD and the company behind the product.
How LiverMD works
The creators of LiverMD claim that this daily supplement will support healthy liver function to optimise detoxification while increasing energy, metabolism and overall liver health.
It aims to do this through 6 natural ingredients that 1MD advise have all been clinically studied and shown to support and protect your liver.
Signs of an unhealthy liver include:
- Chronic fatigue
- Itchy skin
- Skin and eyes that have a yellow tinge, known as jaundice
- Swelling in the abdominal area, legs and ankles
- Dark urine and pale stool
- Bruising easily
The 6 active ingredients in LiverMD
To try to determine if LiverMD is going to have a positive effect on liver health, we’ve done a little digging into each of the main ingredients.
#1 EVNolMax – 100mg
1MD has labelled this ingredient their “supercharged” vitamin E. It’s patented and is said to contain every form of vitamin E for maximum liver benefit.
Vitamin E is one of the most potent antioxidants in the natural world, protecting cells from free radical damage. Specifically, vitamin E derivatives tocopherols and tocotrienols are believed to be some of the most effective antioxidants in the family and tolerated well in the body.
Whilst vitamin E has been shown to be effective in reducing oxidative stress on the liver, it has not been tested extensively on diabetics and so may not be safe for diabetic individuals to use.
A study completed in 2007 found that, although vitamin E levels were shown to be decreased in chronic liver disease, more large-scale research needs to be done into the effects of this vitamin on the liver to be able to definitively say that it has a protective, positive effect.
Studies on rats show that vitamin E significantly reduces oxidative stress, however, studies on over 90 children with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) who were fed calorie-restricted diets and supplemented with vitamin E for 2 years, did not show a more significant improvement than the placebo group. Overall, research has been encouraging but not conclusive.
A relatively small dose
It’s important to note that the FDA recommends a daily intake of around 15mg vitamin E a day, LiverMD contains around 3.5mg per serving so you may need to get the rest of your daily intake from food sources.
#2 Siliphos Bioavailable Silybin – 80mg
Extracted from the milk thistle plant that grows all over the world, silybin has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects that are targeted towards reducing virus-related liver damage.
It’s able to stop toxins from attaching to the liver and harming healthy cells and its said to have a positive effect on symptoms from liver disease, hepatitis, steatohepatitis, and cirrhosis, to name a few.
Silybin is also thought to have no serious side effects and doesn’t interact with other drugs.
In a study conducted in 2006, 24 patients with hepatitis C were given 1,200mg a day of silybin and were not seen to have any significant improvements over the placebo group, although it was tolerated well by their bodies.
One study says that consuming a dose of over 700mg of silybin a day may help to combat the low bioavailability of this supplement and another study mentions that silybin is not harmful at high doses, however, 1MD has chosen to include 80mg a day in their product specifically labeling it as “bioavailable”.
1MD mentions that their milk thistle extract contained in LiverMD is enhanced and so may be more efficiently absorbed and utilised by the body. However we could not find any studies to prove this.
#3 N-acetyl Cysteine (NAC) – 800mg
N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) comes from the semi-essential amino acid, L-cysteine. It assists in the production of glutathione, the most powerful antioxidant in your body.
In this research article, they state that NAC has been seen to reduce the size of the spleen in patients with NAFLD, reflecting a reduction in fat entering the liver.
NAC is considered to be a safe and well-tolerated antioxidant, but few clinical studies on humans have been made to test its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory potential, so its use for liver health is still fairly controversial.
One study on rats in 2011 showed that a 75mg/kg dosage of NAC was sufficient to reduce oxidative tissue damage in their livers, and that NAC at 25mg/kg had a less significant effect respectively.
QUICK TIP: It’s recommended that you don’t exceed more than 1200mg of NAC a day as this can cause headaches, nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhea and abdominal pain. A daily serving of LiverMD includes 800mg.
#4 Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) – 100mg
Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) is another potent antioxidant, it’s an organic compound that’s present within mitochondria, which are the powerhouses of your cells.
Humans can only produce ALA in small amounts naturally, so supplements are an alternative to experience the improved digestion, energy and nutrient absorption that ALA can encourage.
A healthy adult can ingest up to 2,400mg a day without experiencing negative side effects.
One study concludes that a dose of around 600mg a day can be effective in improving liver protection where oxidative stress is involved.
A clinical trial on 45 obese patients with NAFLD showed that a dose of 1,200mg ALA plus 400mg vitamin E a day for 12 weeks had a significant improvement on fat retention in the liver without any adverse side effects, however, the placebo group receiving 400mg of vitamin E a day alone also experienced the same result.
ALA has a low bioavailability due to the liver degrading it quickly, reduced solubility and instability in the stomach, so improved formulations may be necessary to produce desired results.
SUMMARY: LiverMD includes a relatively small amount of ALA. As such we are unsure of this ingredients potency and effectiveness.
#5 Zinc – 15mg
As your body doesn’t produce zinc on its own, it’s essential that you supplement with it or eat enough zinc-rich foods to be able to reap all the benefits that this mineral can bring.
Zinc assists with growth, metabolism, immunity and can protect the liver from cirrhosis, which is scarring of the liver. The liver is the main organ that metabolises zinc but this process can be greatly affected by liver damage.
Zinc supplementation has been shown to stabilise the gut barrier, decrease harmful inflammation, oxidative stress on the liver and apoptotic hepatocyte death, which is where liver cells start self-destructing because they’re unhealthy and/or damaged.
All of this leads to reducing the symptoms of liver diseases such as alcoholic liver disease (ALD) and hepatitis C – the dosage recommended to combat these diseases is 50mg a day taken with meals to avoid possible nausea.
QUICK TIP: The daily recommended intake of zinc for adults is around 11mg, with pregnant women requiring around 13mg a day. More than 40mg of zinc a day may cause negative side effects.
#6 Selenium – 0.2mg
Selenium is an essential mineral that increases the function of antioxidants in the body. It can be found in crab, fish, poultry, and liver.
One study on rats in 2013, showed that their antioxidant activity was restored (which helped reduce cirrhosis) when given selenium for 12 weeks, 3 times a week at 200mg/kg. It was also found that low selenium levels correlate with patients who have cirrhosis and other liver diseases like NAFLD and ALD.
QUICK TIP: The maximum daily intake of selenium should not exceed 400mcg as only 55mcg is needed to get the correct benefits from this mineral. Selenium overdose side effects include brittle nails, fatigue, skin lesions, hair loss and breath that smells like garlic.
Whilst the active ingredients above are definitely the most important, it’s always worth knowing what else goes into a supplement. These are the extra bits that make up the rest of LiverMD:
- Vegetable cellulose capsule – This is the casing on your capsules, generally made from the trunks of pine and spruce trees. It’s vegetarian, has no known health risks, is 100% natural and non-toxic.
- Vegetable oil powder – A filler with low oxidative deterioration.
- Rice flour – Another filler, helps to lengthen shelf life.
- Silica – A naturally forming compound that serves as an anticaking agent to ensure ingredients don’t clump together, safe in such small amounts.
In regard to allergens and additives, this product is free of gluten, preservatives, soy, nuts, dairy, egg, and sugar.
Pricing and returns
Each bottle of LiverMD contains 60 capsules so with the recommended daily serving size of 2 capsules (one capsule twice a day with food), one bottle will last you about a month. Here are the prices offered on 1MD’s website and the price you can expect to pay if you buy in bulk for comparison:
- 1 bottle for $49 (82 cents a capsule)
- 3 bottles for $43 each (72 cents a capsule)
- 6 bottles for $39 each (65 cents a capsule)
A potentially appealing aspect of this product is that 1MD has enough confidence in it to offer a 90-day money back guarantee if you aren’t seeing the results you wanted. This will allow you, as the buyer, to try this product relatively risk-free financially – a great incentive for those who are on the fence about liver supplements.
Who are 1MD?
1MD, the manufacturer of LiverMD, provide doctor formulated and recommended health supplements that help with cognitive function, digestive health, joint health, cholesterol management, blood sugar and more.
1MD’s “About Us” page details their mission of “helping people live longer, healthier lives through the powerful integration of advanced science and nature.”
The Better Business Bureau currently gives them an A+ overall company rating, and it seems the company is quite responsive when it comes to resolving customer complaints.
The Doctor backing LiverMD
Dr. David Kahana, MD, is the expert who’s teamed up with 1MD to create this product. He has around 20 years experience as a gastroenterologist and specialises in assisting his patients with managing chronic digestive conditions through correct nutrition. He also conducts lectures on many gut health subjects such as the benefits of a hypoallergenic diet, inflammation, probiotics and prebiotics.
Dr. David Kahana says that LiverMD includes each of the 6 active ingredients at their clinically effective doses to prevent liver disease, reduce liver stressors and promote healthy regeneration of the liver, among other benefits. He also believes it’s one of the “most potent and effective products for optimal liver health” currently available in today’s market.
Customer reviews of LiverMD
Currently, this product has a 4.2 star rating out of 5 stars on Amazon with just over 60 reviews.
Reading through the reviews, many customers remark that this product helps with bloating and reduced inflammation although many customers remark that the product it a bit too expensive for the results they’re experiencing.
LiverMD has a 4.8 star rating out of 5 on its own website, however, we were unable to find reviews on other third-party websites apart from Amazon – possibly because this product is fairly new.
Summary of LiverMD
Our Summary: 4.7/5
From the research we’ve been able to review, it’s clear that more clinical, large-scale studies need to be conducted on the ingredients that have been included in LiverMD to be able to definitively say that it would improve liver function.
However, the antioxidant properties of EVNolMax, silybin, NAC, ALA and zinc combined with the respective amounts of each ingredient included in this supplement indicate that no adverse reactions should occur and it’s likely that you will see an improvement in liver function and protection.
However, we cannot predict how much this efficacy will vary from person to person as this may depend on the liver condition of the individual. It’s also difficult to judge customer satisfaction so far due to a lack of sufficient reviews for this product.
IN SUMMARY: The 90-day money back guarantee, lack of fillers and mid-range price in the market make this an attractive option when trying out new liver health supplements. This supplement may not work for all people. As with all new supplements, we could recommend consulting your general practitioner before you begin use.
Writer, Product Tester.
Adele is a budding content writer with a passion for all things health and fitness related. In her time off Adele enjoys reading, travelling and exploring Sydney’s culinary delights.