7 Healthy liver Diets
Today we’re going to talk about the best foods to clean out your liver. your liver is not necessarily dirty. It doesn’t accumulate toxins. There are different liver enzymes, whose main function is to detoxify toxins, poisons and chemicals but it’s not a storage facility for poisons and chemicals unless you have a fatty liver. Because these toxins are stored in your fat cells. Now when your liver gets inflamed, it heals with scar tissue and you can develop cirrhosis. You can lose function and create all sorts of issues but the liver itself is not a reservoir for toxins. So, I want to shift my talk into the foods good for liver to get your liver able to detoxify at the highest level and you can totally do this with liver friendly fo. So, we’re going to cover all those but I want to first talk about the different functions of the liver.
Functions of Liver
- It has the ability to detoxify
- It makes bile which is a detergent to help you breakdown fats and extract certain nutrients from fat
- Your liver is a main producer of hormones. For example, insulin-like growth factor. What is that? That is a very similar hormone like growth hormone and is made by your pituitary gland. It’s sent to the liver and works through the liver. So, it has everything to do with helping you burn fat. It’s anabolic hormone so it helps you build muscle. It has everything to do with building proteins.
- Your liver also makes steroid hormones like estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, vitamin d3 which by the way acts like a hormone in the body. In fact, it probably is a hormone but we classified it as a vitamin.
- Cortisol the main anti-inflammatory hormone in the body. It is the main hormone that helps you adapt to stress. So, without cortisol your body can’t adapt to stress and you’re going to get really stressed out. In fact, 80 percent of the cortisol floating through your bloodstream originates from your liver.
- All the steroid hormones come from this one thing called cholesterol. Liver is part of the building block of not just cholesterol but a real key part in the creation of hormones. what’s interesting is that people take certain drugs to block cholesterol like statins. Guess what’s going to happen to these hormones? You’re not going to be able to make them efficiently. You’re going to have all sorts of issues and your liver makes a good portion of the cholesterol in your body. What material is required for the production of cholesterol in liver? If you guess dietary sugars, you are correct. So, cholesterol is made from carbs and cholesterol also makes certain proteins. Certain proteins that transport things in the body like cholesterol, estrogen, testosterone etc.
- Your liver has a post office function in that it is able to package certain things and send them throughout the body. Now these proteins just don’t transport certain things, they also buffer or regulate certain hormones. So if there’s too much estrogen for example or too much cortisol, your liver will buffer that with these proteins to make sure that things are in balance.
All right so these are just some of the many functions of the liver. your liver actually has 500 different functions. Now before I get to the food, I just want to briefly mention the different symptoms that occur when you have damage to the liver.
Liver Problem Symptoms
There are different signs of liver damage which are as follows;
- Itchiness in the body
- Your skin in the whites of the eyes turn yellow, it’s called jaundice.
- Achy joints. Many people who are stiff and have inflammation in the joints really have a liver problem.
- Feeling nauseous is a big symptom of the liver
- having a lowered cognitive function could be liver related and
- if you have gallstones there’s definitely a problem with the liver simply because the liver makes bile and it’s a deficiency of bile and a high level of cholesterol that makes you end up with gall stones.
Foods Good for Liver
- Cruciferous vegetables: Talking about kale, broccoli, brussels sprouts, radish, arugula, mustard etc. They are all cruciferous vegetables. They are very high in a natural phytonutrient called sulforaphane and sulforaphane helps to detoxify the liver. It helps the liver to get rid of inflammation and inflammation leads to insulin resistance. It leads to high insulin which in turn leads to diabetes. And it can even lead to cancer. So, sulforaphane is a really important liver protective compound and it can also help if there’s fat in the liver. Let’s say for example if you drank too much coffee, sulforaphane helps to quickly detoxify things like caffeine, drugs, chemicals and even poisons. Eating cruciferous vegetables with sulforaphane can even enhance the liver to the point of having an enhanced function of the liver even two weeks after where you stopped eating cruciferous vegetables. So, some of the effects from eating cruciferous vegetables extend into the future even if you don’t eat them. There are many other phytonutrients in cruciferous vegetables that support the liver function which also have a lot to do with decreasing complications from diabetes, free radical damage and improving sensitivity to insulin and improving insulin resistance and just supporting your blood sugars.
- Garlic and Ginger: garlic is something that is loaded with sulfur and sulfur is a wonderful thing to detoxify the liver and also act as a natural antibiotic. So, it’s very anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral. Garlic is really good for stripping off fat from your liver and garlic also has a lot of vitamin-B1 as well. It’s anti-inflammatory, very powerful antioxidant and it has huge anti-cancer properties. all right the next one for the liver is
- Turmeric: Turmeric is good for liver. The active phytonutrient in turmeric is curcumin. It is just a powerhouse in reducing inflammation. There is someone recently who had lifelong headaches and she had to take copious amounts of Tylenol for years. Her liver has been going down -hill. So, one of the key things that she did is started taking turmeric on a daily basis. Not only did her headaches go away but not having to take Tylenol, her liver is going to do much better.
- Turmeric helps stabilize the mitochondria which is why it’s very anti-cancer because the origin of cancer happens with damaged mitochondria.
- Turmeric is very heavily studied especially in its ability to decrease fat on your liver. So, if you combine a ketogenic diet, low carb and turmeric and some of these other compounds you’re going to be in really good shape as far as having a healthy liver.
- Beetroot Benefits: Beets have always been known to help detox the liver. They can help reduce liver enzymes If the liver enzymes are high. They can help reduce the phytonutrients in the pigments and beets can help activate the release of bile salts that can help decrease the fat in your liver. But beetroots are hepatoprotective which means they protect the liver cells and they can significantly reduce inflammation in the liver. If they can reduce inflammation in liver, they can slow down the process of fibrosis, scar tissue and cirrhosis. So, these are all the amazing beetroots benefits
- Mushrooms: There are different types of mushrooms. Now what’s so important about mushrooms with the liver? Well, mushrooms are the food that has some of the highest amount of glutathione and glutathione is the main antioxidant for the liver especially if you do turkey tail mushroom, oyster mushrooms and other mushrooms as well. Mushrooms are hepatoprotective that means they protect the cells of the liver.
- Avocados: Avocados are a great thing to consume to help repair and stabilize the liver. Avocados too are high in glutathione that support the liver and but the main thing about avocados is all you have to do is consume one avocado a week to see significant improvements in your liver function. Avocados are very anti-inflammatory and inflammation in the liver leads to so many issues including hepatitis, fatty liver as well as cirrhosis. So, anything that can lower inflammation would be very good for the liver.
- Extra Virgin Olive oil: Just a very small amount in fact just one little teaspoon of olive oil in your salad dressing can create significant improvements. In liver enzymes extra virgin olive oil decreases fat on your liver, it improves insulin sensitivity, it reduces insulin resistance and it’s a very powerful anti-inflammatory.