Your liver is a workhorse for your health. Technically, it is an extension of your digestive system. It is your main detoxifying organ for handling processed foods and other toxin-laden components in your diet.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg for describing what a healthy liver does for you. Its phenomenal range of activities also includes:
* Enhancing nutrient absorption in the GI tract
* Balancing protein, fat, and sugar in your blood
* Getting rid of old red blood cells and their leftover waste products
* Producing essential agents for proper blood clotting
* Breaking down and metabolizing medications and alcohol
* Producing essential proteins and cholesterol
* Storing minerals, especially iron, and vitamin A
That’s what you can expect when your liver is healthy. The good news is you can easily keep it that way by liver cleansing. The following four strategies will help you the most.
1) Remove toxic foods from your diet.
The most common sources of dietary toxins are processed foods. Vegetable oils, bad fats, refined carbohydrates, and prepackaged meats are some of the worst offenders.
Typical processed vegetable oils include soy, canola, corn, and safflower. Cottonseed oil is also a common ingredient in processed foods. All of these oils are highly processed.
The worst of the bad fats to avoid are synthetic trans-fats. These are the partially hydrogenated oils that are synthesized from common vegetable oils. They are often added to processed foods to improve their texture and shelf life.
The most widespread of the refined carbohydrates is fructose from high-fructose corn syrup. This sugar is a particular challenge to liver health since the liver can only get rid of about 20% of the fructose that you consume. The remainder has to be metabolized into other products, such as fatty triglycerides, before being exported into the bloodstream.
Processed meats – e.g., hot dogs, bologna, bacon, ham, salami, sausages, and canned meats – typically contain lots of sugar and bad fats that can overtax your liver function.
2) Drink raw vegetable juice.
Raw vegetables, especially leafy greens, are the best foods for liver detoxification. Nutritionists recommend having as many as 11 servings of vegetables a day. This can be overwhelming unless you put at least some of those servings into smoothies
The best vegetables for liver cleansing smoothies include cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and kale. If their flavors are not especially appealing, you can add carrots, cucumber, beets, or spinach or other greens for a tastier and more enjoyable detox beverage.
3) Eat liver.
Liver is one of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat. It’s no surprise that eating liver provides what livers need. Liver from grass-fed cattle or pastured chickens is rich in vitamins A, folic acid, CoQ10, choline, and several liver-healthy minerals (iron, copper, zinc, chromium).
Having liver 1-2 times a week can do wonders for your liver health. In case you don’t like liver, you can instead take freeze-dried liver tablets as a supplement.
4) Take liver-boosting supplements.
The most well-known herbal supplement for liver health is milk thistle. Several other herbs are also excellent for enhancing liver function.
Of these, turmeric is probably the most versatile. Besides boosting liver function, it also provides a myriad of other health benefits and is a rising star among herb-based supplements worldwide.
Dandelion root is also widely known for its value to your liver.
More recently, research on extracts of artichoke and black radish has shown that these two herbs belong on the list of supplements that help your liver. Specifically, they support bile production that helps the liver break down fats and proteins.
Although these four strategies for boosting liver health seem simple, together they will have a tremendous positive impact on your liver function.