Healthy Lifestyle, Healthy Liver
Most of us don’t realize how much we affect our liver function based on what we eat and drink on a daily basis. If you are not leading a healthy lifestyle, you are giving your liver quite a workout.
The liver is the second largest organ in the body. It is also the garbage and recycling center, so any problem with the liver impacts other organ systems.
The liver already gets a substantial workout having to process and purify all the blood in your body, while performing hundreds of other tasks each day, such as metabolizing proteins and storing vitamins and minerals.
You can look in the mirror to see if your liver is healthy. Do you have dark circles under your eyes, or pale sallow skin? Do you have a yellowish coating on your tongue? Are you irritable? Arthritic? Do you have trouble digesting fatty foods? These are all signs that your liver may not be operating efficiently.
Even PMS symptoms can increase in severity as the liver becomes less efficient at detoxifying hormones when it’s in a unhealthy state.
How Eating Supports Liver Function ~ BE WELL TIP: Consume high-quality protein. Amino acids, including taurine and methionine, contained in lean protein from animal sources, are essential for efficient liver function and avoiding gallstones. BE WELL TIP: Eat plenty of fibrous foods (including fresh fruits and vegetables). Fiber encourages healthy liver and bowelfunction. BE WELL TIP: Drink plenty of water (about two to three liters daily). The liver needs plenty of water to perform its hundreds of daily tasks. Without adequate water, the body begins to prioritize water needs by slowing or shutting down select bodily functions.
It is significant that 20 percent of Americans suffer from nonalcoholic fatty liver disease linked to obesity-related conditions such as diabetes. Abuse of alcohol increases that percentage, but that is a topic for another day.
Doctors recommend that their obese patients lose a minimum of 10 percent of their body weight to help control or reverse this condition.
It is a fact that overeating and being obese cause excess fat to be deposited in the liver and impairs its function.
Some foods can contribute to good liver function. These include: endive, celery, onions, sprouts, garlic, bitter greens like dandelion, beet and cabbage greens, nuts, seeds, sesame oil, wheat germ and, of course, fruit.
Some nutritional supplements can also boost liver function. These include milk thistle, CoQ10, black currant seed and MSM.
Always check with your doctor before taking any supplements or modifying your diet.