by Drew Canole
The liver is the primary way that your body rids toxins, it detoxifies and cleanses your body by filtering the harmful material from the bloodstream and helps digest food.
A fully functioning liver works as our fat-burning organ, it takes the nutrients from the food we eat and turns it into essential blood components, locking away vitamins and minerals and producing proteins and enzymes to keep our hormones in check. Our livers also help our immune system fight infections, wipes out bacteria from the blood and makes bile, which we need for digesting our food. It is when our liver becomes overworked as a result of stress and/or excessive exposure to toxins that our entire internal system can be disrupted causing severe health problems.
As the liver also makes bile which is also a type of detoxification as it is needed for the breakdown and assimilation of the fats and proteins in your food. This is why it is essential that the liver is looked after because if your liver isn’t working properly your body is unable to take on the necessary nutrients from the food you eat or clean the blood moving around your body. Dr. Karl Maret, M.D., writes about the importance of vibrant liver function.
“The thousands of enzyme systems that are responsible for virtually every body activity are constructed in the liver. The proper functioning of the eyes, the heart, the brain, the gonads, the joints, and the kidneys, are all dependent on good liver activity. If the liver is impaired from constructing even one of the thousands of enzyme systems the body requires, there is an impairment in overall body function and a resultant greater metabolic stress on the individual.”
Here are just 8 important foods you may want to considering including into your everyday diet to help keep your liver healthy.
Avocados – Including more avocados to your diet can help your body produce a type of antioxidant called glutathione, which our livers need to filter out harmful materials boosting its cleansing power. Some research has shown that eating one or two avocados a week for as little as 30 days can repair a damaged liver (i).
Garlic – Contains a number of sulfur-containing compounds including allicin and selenium two powerful nutrients proven to help protect the liver from toxic damage, and activate the liver enzymes responsible for flushing out toxins from the body.
Grapefruit – Is rich in natural vitamin C and antioxidants, two powerful liver cleansers. Like garlic, grapefruit contains compounds that boost the production of liver detoxification enzymes. It also contains a flavonoid compound known as naringenin that makes the liver burn fat rather than store it. Either eating or drinking grapefruit juice can help your liver flush out carcinogens and toxins.
Green Tea – Is loaded with antioxidants known as catechins, which have been known to improve the functions of our liver and has been shown in studies to eliminate liver fat accumulation and promote proper liver function (ii). This powerful herbal drink also protects the liver against toxins that would otherwise cause serious damage.
Walnuts – Are also high in l-arginine, an amino acid, glutathione and omega-3 fatty acids, which help our liver through its cleansing process and helps detoxify the liver of disease-causing ammonia. Walnuts also help oxygenate the blood and extracts from their hulls are often used in liver-cleansing formulas.
Leafy Greens – Such as spinach, bitter gourd, arugula, dandelion greens, mustard greens, chicory and lettuce are able to neutralize heavy metals, chemicals and pesticides that may be in our foods, and act as a protective mechanism for the liver encouraging the making and flow of cleansing bile.
Cruciferous Vegetables – Veggies like broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts also increase the amount of glucosinolate (organic compounds) in our bodies that helps create enzyme production for digestion.
Turmeric – Is one of the most powerful foods for maintaining a healthy liver, it has been shown to actively protect the liver against toxic damage and even regenerate damaged liver cells. Turmeric also boosts the natural production of bile, shrinks engorged hepatic ducts, and improves overall function of the gallbladder, another body-purifying organ. It acts as a natural form of detox for your liver.
Is Your Liver Healthy?