Good day everyone! This week we are going to take a look at maintaining a healthy liver. We often take it for granted and don’t realize how important it is to keep it healthy. Let’s take a look at what the liver does in the body and then we will give you tips on healthy liver support:
What does the Liver do?
The liver is the hardest working organ. It is the first organ to remove toxins from the body. Here’s a quick break down:
- It works closely with the digestive system producing bile to break down foods
- Filters blood from the digestive tract
- Metabolizes fats from digestive tract so they can be used for energy
- Spreads nutrients through out the body via the blood stream
- Eliminates toxic waste left over from digested food or other toxins that the body has absorbed via the skin or lungs
- Breaks down and removes excess hormones
- Has the ability to store vitamins and minerals for when the body may need them
- Turns carbohydrates to glucose (a form of energy) and stores it for later use as needed
- Manages the conversion of fats from your food and manufactures triglycerides and cholesterol
Food for your Liver
As you can see, your liver takes on a lot of burden every day, doing multiple tasks at once. Supporting it with healthy foods can be a great way of lightening that burden. The best foods for cleansing the liver are foods that contain high levels of POTASSIUM (your body needs LOTS of Potassium 4,700mg/per day– if you have high levels of potassium in your kidneys, foods rich in potassium should be consumed moderately):
- Sweet Potato (medium size will yield around 700mg of Potassium)
- Beet Greens (One cup will yield about 1300mg of Potassium- you can always juice them with your beets)
- Spinach (one serving will yield about 800mg of Potassium)
Supplements for your Liver
Luckily, there are several different herbs and liver formulas that you can take to support or cleanse your liver. Here are some options:
- Milk Thistle– This is the best known herb for liver health. It will help increase glutathione levels in the liver– which helps increase liver function and toxin removal.
- NAC -NAC is needed to make and replenish glutathione. Glutathione is one of the body’s most important antioxidants, which helps neutralize free radicals that can damage cells and tissues in your body.
- Artichoke- A relative of milk thistle, this herb is also beneficial for the liver. It will help increase bile which will help the gallbladder out and help improve digestion.
- Turmeric– This herb is fantastic for the liver as well as the whole body. Turmeric is a POWERFUL antioxidant and blood purifier. Coupled up with Milk Thistle, these two make for great liver purifiers! On it’s own, it can reduce systemic inflammation in the body, read more HERE.
- Dandelion- This herb is very beneficial for the liver because it will help keep the toxins from accumulating in the liver as well as the whole body.
- Liver cleansing formulas:
- Himalaya LiverCare– This ayurvedic (traditional Indian herbal medicine) formula uses herbs that are beneficial for cleansing the liver. Many people who have used this formula always rave about it.
- Liver Refresh– This liver formula has beneficial herbs as well amino acids that will help strengthen and detox the liver.
Love your Liver!
They say that the liver is the most forgiving organ– this is because it has the ability to regenerate liver cells fairly rapidly. With the help from your diet, lifestyle, and herbal supplementation, you can help rejuvenate your liver fast! Something to consider: if your liver is overloaded with toxins or not working in it’s optimal state this can effect your digestive system, skin health, brain health, and more. Just as though this is the first organ to take on toxins, it might be good to consider it as the first organ to focus on restoring if/when health issues arise. Purifying the liver can also help reduce seasonal allergies!
**Fun Fact: In Chinese Medicine the liver is associated with strong emotions, especially anger. If you feel easily angered, maybe you should give your liver some love and support it with the tips mentioned above!
As always, do what you feel is best for YOUR body– if you aren’t sure, ask your doctor. We are health ENTHUSIASTS not licensed practitioners.