The body is a complex, and highly efficient system – comprised of many individual body systems responsible for varying functions and processes that are critical to sustaining a healthy life. A critical function of the body is its ability to cleanse itself and eliminate toxins that may inhibit it from it functioning properly. More frequently referred to as “detoxification”, there are four major organs which contribute to this process, including the liver, kidneys, intestinal tract, and skin.
Of these, the liver is most frequently regarded as “the” detoxification organ and for all intents and purposes, will be our focus. Responsible for eliminating toxins from internal sources – such as the burning of sugars, fats, and proteins, as well as external sources like food additives, chemicals in agriculture, sweeteners, additives, and medication, your liver carries a hefty job title! Given it’s a crucial role to your overall health and well being, supporting your liver functioning should be an important component to your personal health regimen (1).
Integrate these five liver supporting methods into your daily health program will help you optimize your health, and support an awesome life!
1. Remove Known Toxins From Your Diet
Highly processed foods such as foods laden with sugar, hydrogenated oils, additives, dyes, and preservatives are known toxins to the body. While the true effect on your health is in question, to the liver, they are all toxins that must be filtered out and eliminated from the body. By removing or at least reducing them within your diet, you alleviate your liver of the task of having to go into “toxin elimination overdrive.”
2. Have Your Servings & Juice Them Too
A busy lifestyle paired with a world full of convenience food items sometimes makes getting all of your daily servings of vegetables next to impossible. By “juicing” your vegetables, you will be able to quickly consume the amounts needed to help support proper liver detoxification. Additionally, juicing actually make it easier for your body to digest these fibrous vegetables by breaking them down into a form more readily available for absorption (2). If there are many vegetables that you know you should be eating but can’t bring yourself to do it (we can’t love everything!), you’ll even be able to hide some of these “not-so-favorites” in your glass with relative ease.
Some vegetables are better than others when it comes to liver support and detoxification. If you are really in need of a boost, try incorporating some of these nutritional powerhouses into your diet:
3. Harvest the Benefits of Herbs
There are many herbs known to help support the detoxification of the body, and many can be found at your local grocery store or in your garden!
So much more than just a weed appearing in your lawn or garden each and every spring, dandelion contains bitter principles that have a tonic effect on the liver and digestive system. It is also a very rich source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, D, C and B and iron, silicon, magnesium, zinc, and manganese.
Red clover has been used for centuries in Traditional Chinese Medicine as a means of supporting the liver. It is considered to purify the blood and aid the body in removing toxins.
Stinging Nettle, or Nettle Leaf, acts as a diuretic. These diuretic properties make it an effective detoxifier for the urinary system, though its natural cleansing properties have been shown to also be beneficial for the entire body. Nettle is rich in vitamins and minerals which herbalists believe can assist in cleansing and building the blood when taken consistently.
This spicy & tangy herb has been used widely in Chinese, Japanese and Indian medicine as a digestive aid. Recent studies have shown ginger to be beneficial in soothing the stomach and supporting digestion.
The least commonplace of all herbs included in this list, burdock root is known for its ability to support body functions such as digestion and routine cleansing and detoxification. Though quite bitter in flavor, burdock can help to stimulate gastric juices and thus support healthy digestion. Worry not if you are unable to find this herb easily. Native Remedies DetoxSlim™ includes this herb, as well as all others mentioned above, in its formulation.
4. Say Yes To Healthy Fats
Your liver is responsible for the production of the bile that will later be stored in the gallbladder for the breakdown of fats. While it may seem odd that one should eat fats in order to later breakdown fats, healthy fat sources such as omega-3’s and monounsaturated fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties that are beneficial to the liver (4).
5. Purchase Organic
What possibly could the source of your produce have to do with liver detoxification? Well, as stated earlier, your liver views all foreign chemicals, pesticides, and herbicides as toxins that must be eliminated from the body. Avoiding consuming these substances altogether will allow your liver to focus on eliminating other internal toxin sources.
- Nowak, Thompson B. “Liver Detoxification.” pp. 1-2 https://people.cornellcollege.edu/bnowakthompson/pdfs/liverDetox.pdf. Accessed 29 Sept. 2017
- Boldt, Ethan. “6 Step Liver Cleanse.” Dr. Axe, 21 July 2017, draxe.com/liver-cleanse/. Accessed 30 Sept. 2017.
- Bracco, Lorraine. “30 Cleansing Foods to Naturally Detox Your Body.” Rodale Wellness, 12 Jan. 2017, http://www.rodalewellness.com/food/cleansing-detox-foods/slide/15. Accessed 30 Sept. 2017.
- “5 Liver Detox Superfoods.” The Dr. Oz Show, 21 July 2016, http://www.doctoroz.com/gallery/5-liver-detox-superfoods. Accessed 30 Sept. 2017.