The liver can do 500 functions.
This is one powerful organ, the one organ in the body that is capable of regenerating itself. The liver controls your health and longevity and your ability to bounce back from infection.
What Does my Liver do?
The liver is truly the master organ of the immune system, producing chemicals to combat viruses (including the HIV virus) and bacteria, supporting immune function, and producing antihistamines to neutralize substances that promote the growth of cancer. When the liver is not functioning properly - and is over-blocked by toxins - the body's immune system is severely weakened leading to chronic illness.
The liver's role is to break down and neutralize a wide array of potentially toxic chemicals, including such things as food additives, environmental pollutants, petroleum, paint and solvents. Even many natural substances, such as hormones, need to be broken down.
It stores certain vitamins, minerals (including iron) and sugars, regulates fat stores, and controls the production and excretion of cholesterol. The bile, produced by liver cells, helps you to digest your food and absorb important nutrients. It neutralizes and destroys poisonous substances and metabolizes alcohol. It helps you resist infection and removes bacteria from the blood stream, helping you to stay healthy.
Arguably, your liver isn't just your silent partner – it's your best friend.
How To Heal Your Liver
use milk thistle
Milk Thistle is an example of a potent standardized herb that contains a minimum of 80% silymarin, the active nutrient that gives milk thistle its great effectiveness for the treatment of liver hepatitis or liver disease cirrhosis. Milk Thistle (Silybum maianum) seeds are approved as a natural treatment for damaged liver, inflammatory liver pain conditions and liver diseases such as cirrhosis, hepatitis, and fatty liver disease caused by alcohol and other toxins.
Furthermore, according the recent clinical research in Germany, the seeds of milk thistle help avoid liver disease and make an excellent tonic for the liver and gall bladder. Physicians have prescribed milk thistle, one of the best herbs for liver disease, for hepatitis treatment to keep down inflammation, for cirrhosis treatment to soften the liver, for liver cancer to aid in liver detoxification, and for many dysfunctions of the gall bladder system. Jarrows has a highly rated milk thistle. It's $13.95 on Amazon. $12.90 on Iherb.
Dandelion has also been used to treat poor digestion, water retention, and diseases of the liver such as alcohol hepatitis. Many herbalists view the dandelion as an effective treatment for liver disease, even in extreme cases such as liver disease cirrhosis. It protects against free radical damage because it is a strong liver antioxidant, reduces inflammation and protects liver from alcohol liver disease, liver cancer pain, and a number of toxic compounds. It's the best herbal remedy and natural medicine for upset liver, liver pain relief and liver disorder against alcoholic and non-alcoholic liver disease.
Other bitter greens to use are parsley, cilantro, endive, arugula, and watercress. These are powerful, "Liver Detox Greens." These astringent foods help protect the liver from the ravages of smoking, drinking, and toxic pollution while they clean and revitalize the liver and gall bladder. You can buy dandelion leaf on Amazon for $10.46 or on IHerb for $11.28. This brand is organic and freeze dried.
Studies have led the way in understanding how various antioxidants have the potential to prevent or treat the damage associated with free radical induced oxidative stress. Antioxidants not only help the liver carry out its cleansing processes, but they also serve to protect the liver from excessive free radical damage.
The high levels of antioxidants in a high quality green food are the front line of defense in the war on destructive free radicals that will destroy cells ability to repair, renew, and rejuvenate.
- Fruits and vegetables contain a wide variety of nutrients, including antioxidants, phytochemicals, and carotenoids, that can be beneficial to both general health and liver health.
- Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts and cabbage in the diet have been shown to enhance liver detoxification.
- Spinach, tomatoes, and beets contain antioxidants, B vitamins, and carotenoids that enhance the efficiency of Phase I detoxification.
- Garlic contains methionine, which is necessary for detoxification, and also contains selenium, which is an antioxidant that plays a role in Phase I detoxification.
The antioxidant activity of beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and selenium is also recommended. Improving your diet and exercise is a DEFINITE must for long-term health. Various nutrients are required in order for the liver detoxification to be carried out successfully. An adequate supply of key antioxidants is essential to prevent further liver damage.
The lemon is a wonderful stimulant to the liver. A discovery by those working with HIV / AIDS has found that combining the simple lemon with extra virgin olive oil and blending these together (with the lemon rind and seeds) and a glass and half of spring water, can and does produce amazing results, when drunk on a daily basis.
The lemon and the extra virgin olive oil, when taken together, act as a potent liver and gallbladder flush, detoxifying the liver, lowering biliruben levels, removing heavy metals, increasing the production of bile from the liver, stimulating lymphatic flow, and restoring the pH of your saliva, which in turn helps you to absorb the nutrients from the food you eat.
be sure to exercise
Exercise stimulates blood circulation and when blood circulates better, all organs function better. Exercise keeps your body and liver strong and better able to defend itself against viruses, disease, and pollutants. Not only does exercise reduce the amount of blood sugar, but it also increases blood circulation to all parts of the body, including the brain.
Stretching and deep breathing exercises early in the morning provide the most benefit for anyone with sluggish liver. Early morning exercises help to bring the blood out of the liver into the circulating system. The benefits of a regular exercise routine are proven and plentiful, including lowering the risk of heart disease, increasing energy levels, lowering both high blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and combating depression.
avoid toxic herbs
Plants of the Senecio, Crotalaria and Heliotopium families, plus chaparral, germander, comfrey, mistletoe, skullcap, margosa oil, mate tea, Gordolobo yerba tea, pennyroyal, and Jin Blu Huan are all toxic to the liver.
watch the protein
To quickly determine your daily protein in grams, divide your weight in pounds by 2. Too much daily protein may cause hepatic encephalopathy (mental confusion). This occurs when the amount of dietary protein is greater than the liver's ability to use the protein. This causes a build up of toxins that can interfere with brain function. Protein is restricted in patients with clinical evidence of encephalopathy.
However, controversy exists regarding the type of protein a diet should contain. Vegetable and dairy protein may be tolerated better than meat protein. Medications, such as lactulose and neomycin, may be used to help control hepatitis-related encephalopathy. Due to the body's need for proteins, protein restriction should only be undertaken with a doctor's advice.
watch the calories
Excess calories in the form of processed carbohydrates can add to liver dysfunction and can cause fat deposits in the liver. No more than 30% of a person's total calories should come from fat because of the danger to the cardiovascular system. To figure out your daily calorie needs, you'll need a minimum of 15 calories a day for each pound you weigh.
watch vitamins A and D
Excessive amounts of some vitamins may be an additional source of stress to the liver that must act as a filter for the body. Mega-vitamin supplements, particularly if they contain vitamins A and D, may be harmful. Excess vitamin A is very toxic to the liver. Also important to note is that too little vitamin D and A can also be harmful to the liver.
beware of alcohol
You'll need to stop drinking completely to give your liver a break - a chance to heal, a chance to rebuild, a chance for new liver cells to grow. This means avoiding beer, wine, cocktails, champagne, and liquor in any other form. If you continue to drink, your liver will pay the price.
beware of alcohol with acetaminophen
Acetaminophen is an ingredient in some over-the-counter pain relievers, and is contained in many over-the-counter drugs used for colds or coughs. Taken with alcohol, these products can cause a condition called sudden and severe hepatitis which could cause fatal liver failure. Clearly, you should never combine these two substances. If you have any doubt about what medicines to take simultaneously, ask your doctor.
eat more vitamin C foods
Vincent Zannoni at the University of Michigan Medical School has shown that vitamin C protects the liver. Even doses as low as 500 milligrams daily helps prevent fatty buildup and cirrhosis. 5,000 mg of vitamin C per day appears to actually flush fats from the liver. If you want a supplement, try Madre C at IHerb. It is a whole food vitamin C supplement.
Licorice has been found to neutralize liver toxins. The Chinese may have been the first to use licorice to treat the liver. In modern times, licorice has been studied by the Research Group of Liver Disease at the Shanxi Medical College in China. Since the 1950s, medical doctors in both the East and the West have used a compound derived from licorice to treat chronic hepatitis. In Japan, glycyrrhizin, a compound extracted from licorice, was found to be so successful in treating hepatitis that it was written up in at least three scientific journals. One of these reported that licorice increased the production of interferon, which is commonly used to treat hepatitis B.
The Chinese herbs shizandra and bupleurum also neutralize liver toxins. Studies conducted in China show that all these herbs work in several ways, including serving as antioxidants, to protect your liver and keep it healthy and strong. Shizandra was recently developed into a new drug by the Pharmaceutical Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. This herb has been proven to diminish hepatitis B in less than a month.
A whole list of herbs used in the Orient—ginger, turmeric, cardamom, ginseng (especially red ginseng), the Japanese plant ukon, reishi mushroom and psyllium seed—have been shown to reduce liver damage. In one Chinese study, about 75 percent of a group of people with chronic hepatitis were successfully treated with reishi mushroom, shizandra and Astragulus baicalensis. Their liver swelling went down, and their appetites improved. A great tea is Daily Detox Tea I and II. The tea contains burdock, milk thistle, dandelion, red clover and a few other detox herbs. I use it to detox and it works well. The tea is sold on Iherb for a good deal.
Thanks for reading! What do you think?