Following a healthy liver diet is vital to maintaining optimal functioning of a healthy liver, an organ that endeavors to perform a variety of operations essential to the dynamic and complex task of operating a human body.
Found in the upper right area of the abdomen (see the page Where is Your Liver Located), the liver is large enough to extend slightly into the upper left abdomen as well.
Appearing dome-like and compact, the liver is divided into two sections, a left lobe and a right lobe that is noticeably larger than the left, due to a ligament called the falciform, which distinctly divides it.
This ligament also attaches the liver to the anterior body wall.
What Is the Function of the Liver?
Responsible for synthesizing bile and numerous chemical conversions, the liver relies on a healthy liver diet to perform various tasks benefiting the body’s systems, such as:
- Metabolize and store fats and fatty acids, both of which are necessary precursors to energy synthesis
- Manufacture important proteins that contribute to blood volume and blood clotting
- Store and process carbohydrates into glucose required by the brain and blood for optimal functioning
- Produce and secrete bile, which facilitates absorption of fats and vitamins K, D, E and A in the intestines
- Detoxify the body by eliminating alcohol, drugs and other harmful substances from the blood and tissues
- Regulate production and discharge of cholesterol
The Effects of a Poor Diet
While consuming foods detrimental to liver functioning does not directly cause liver disease, you can experience symptoms of an unhealthy liver due to a diet high in fats, sugars and empty calories.
In addition, poor nutrition practices exacerbate livers that have previously suffered from diseases, which may eventually lead to a complete shutdown of liver processes.
The Effects of a Healthy Liver Diet
Following a healthy liver diet may also assist in regeneration of damaged liver cells, especially those cells weakened by hepatitis.
A healthy liver is also responsible for efficient protein utilization, important to energy levels, hormonal imbalances that may contribute to impotency in men and low sex drive in women, reducing the risk of irritable bowel syndrome and gall bladder problems.
By adopting a liver cleansing diet that is both nutritious and satisfying, you can provide your liver with the proper vitamins and minerals necessary to maintain optimal functioning of all your body’s systems.
Symptoms of Liver Problems to Keep in Mind
When excessive fat accumulates in the liver, bile production is unable to process and eliminate fat quickly enough to prevent overwhelming the liver. As a result, fat is forced into the bloodstream where it is dispersed throughout the body, essentially promoting high cholesterol, hypertension and heart disease.
Symptoms of a liver desperately in need of a liver detox diet include:
- Water retention
- Inability to lose weight/weight gain
- Frequent headaches or migraines
- Skin disorders (psoriasis, blemishes)
- Acid reflux
- Weakened immune system
- Chronic fatigue
The benefits of engaging in a healthy liver diet become evident as a healthy liver means you feel and look better too.
Free Liver Cleansing Diet Guidelines
In addition to consuming healthy liver diet foods, you should also participate in some basic guidelines regarding your liver’s health, such as:
- Avoiding excessive alcohol consumption
- Severely reducing amount of fats, sugars and other empty calories consumed
- Drinking plenty of water each day, at least eight glasses, while implementing a healthy liver diet
- Avoiding prolonged exposure to toxic substances such as paint fumes and harsh pollutants
- Exercising to lose fat accumulations around the stomach and chest
- Brussels sprouts
- Bak Choy (Chinese cabbage)
- Raw carrots
- Brown rice
- Wheat germ
- One to 2 cans of tomatoes, stewed
- 3 medium-sized green onions
- One can of beef broth
- One package of chicken noodle soup mix
- One small celery bunch, chopped
- 2 cans of green beans
- 2 pounds of carrots, chopped
- 2 chopped green peppers
- ½ medium-sized beet
- 1 apple
- 2 carrots
- One part fennel seed
- One part flax seed
- One part peppermint
- ¼ part burdock
- ¼ part licorice root
- ½ cup of olive oil
- 5 pink grapefruits
- 1 tablespoon of Epsom salts
- 5 apples
- 2 lemons
By following guidelines for liver cleansing alternative medicine suggestions and a regular program of exercise, you can contribute to a healthy liver and effectively decrease the risk of suffering from liver diseases because of an unhealthy lifestyle.
List of Liver Detox Foods to Include in Your Healthy Liver Diet
Foods promoting the process of liver detoxification by creating water-soluble compounds from fat-soluble toxins contain beneficial phytonutrients.
These foods of a healthy liver diet include:
List of Healthy Antioxidant Foods to Include in Your Healthy Liver Diet
A healthy liver diet should also include foods rich in antioxidants, which inhibit liver damage precipitated by toxins.
Eating at least one serving daily of these foods provide molecules that consume damaging free radicals roaming the body in search of cells to destroy.
Antioxidant foods contributing to a healthy liver include:
These foods also contain glutathione, often referred to as the body’s “master oxidant” because of its effectiveness in eliminating free radicals.
Predominantly found in the liver, glutathione is the substance resulting from interactions between specific amino acids.
As part of a liver cleansing diet, these foods providing glutathione allow the liver to facilitate the eradication of toxins targeting the liver and impeding its normal functioning.
The success of a healthy liver diet also depends on drinking fluids conducive to cleaning the liver. Drinking water is one of the best ways to flush the liver of fats and toxins obstructing metabolism, which causes sluggish processing of carbohydrates and proteins for energy utilization by the body.
Recipe for Liver Cleansing Vegetable Soup
Liver Cleansing Juice Diet
Juices and other beverages accommodating the liver cleansing process include vegetable juice, apple juice, lemon water, rice milk, dandelion tea and grape juice.
A good juice recipe to incorporate in a healthy liver diet is one that blends water, lemon juice, grapefruit juice, one garlic clove and ½ teaspoon of ginger root. Mint is optional for taste purposes.
A vegetable juice recipe to use in conjunction with a healthy liver diet consists of water, cabbage, lemon juice, celery, pears and dried ginger root mixed in a blender until smooth.
This cleansing beet juice recipe requires a juicer for blending:
Herbs for Liver Health
Holistic medicine practitioners have used milk thistle seeds to treat liver disorder for many years. Specifically implicated in reducing the damaging effects of cirrhosis, milk thistle liver remedy also may help in cleansing the liver and protecting liver cells from free radical damage.
Black Walnut Hull
In addition, the hull contains antioxidants as well, which assist in reducing blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Crushed or powdered black walnut hull is used in making teas or can be taken as a supplement in capsule form to enhance a healthy liver diet. Black walnut nuts also provide essential omega fatty acids and protein, nutrients important to liver health and the cleansing process.
Turmeric root is another herb providing anti-inflammatory properties as well as chemicals enhancing liver health and facilitating the cleansing process.
An herb called burdock may also reduce the unhealthy effects of toxic substances accumulating in the liver. Both can be used to make cleansing liver herbal teas, which can be integrated into a liver cleansing juice diet.
An example of an herbal tea meant for liver cleansing, is this recipe containing:
Some individuals detox the liver using a recipe incorporating Epsom salts in a healthy liver diet.
These salts cling to and solidify fats in bile ducts, which then move easily into the large intestine for elimination.
One such liver cleansing recipe using Epsom salts contains:
Begin this 24-hour cleansing process by juicing three grapefruits and drinking the juice between 8:00 in the morning and noon.
Between 1:00 and 5:00 in the afternoon, juice five apples and drink.
At 5:30 P.M., blend one tablespoon of Epsom salts with ¾ cup of water. Squeeze one of the lemons into it before drinking. Repeat these instructions at 6 P.M.
Around 7:30 P.M., take half of the ½ cup of oil, juice two grapefruits, squeeze the other lemon into the mixture and blend well. Drink about two or three hours prior to going to bed.
Those who have gallstones may pass the gallstones after using this liver cleansing recipe. In addition, you should not repeat this cleansing process until two weeks have passed to prevent liver tolerance to the effects of Epsom salts.
Additional Benefits of a Healthy Liver
A healthy liver diet not only promotes liver functioning but also improves skin conditions by ameliorating acne, boils, psoriasis and other skin issues generally caused by impurities in the blood.
Frequently, an accumulation of antibiotics, food additives, junk food and hormones clog sebaceous glands of the face, neck, chest and shoulder areas where acne blemishes tend to proliferate.
Integrating a liver detox diet into a program of regular exercise will give you healthy, glowing skin that resists signs of aging such as wrinkling and sagging. Furthermore, you will discover many other beneficial results of the liver cleansing process that will have you performing thorough liver detoxification for the rest of your life.
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