Want to know how to detox? It’s all about the liver. While some people swear by juice cleanses or water fasts to detoxify their body, it isn’t necessary if you have a healthy diet. Unfortunately, many people’s dietary choices are less than awesome and any toxins ingested can overburden the liver. Since your liver is the major detoxification organ of the body, it’s logical that, for the most efficient elimination of toxins, you want your liver to be functioning optimally.
If your diet is high in fatty food, refined starches, junk food, and alcohol, you could be overworking your liver. This can lead to your body being unable to fully absorb nutrients like vitamin A, D, E, K and EFAs; leading to some serious symptoms from malnutrition. This is why many people do choose to do a fast or other type of ‘cleanse’; to take the burden off the liver for awhile so it can properly detox. Fortunately, there are some dietary changes you can make right now that will help improve how your liver functions.
Your Liver Is Awesome
Your liver is an efficient filter, screening everything in the blood that enters it. It deactivates toxins and heavy metals, breaks down coffee toxins, alcohol, nicotine, drugs, pesticides, and additives. It also regulates the contents of sugar, fats, protein, and hormones in your blood. Since the liver does so much, it can be overworked. Here are some signs that might be happening.
Some Signs Of A Poorly Functioning Liver
- Food allergies and sensitivities
- High blood cholesterol
- Headache and dizziness
- Weak or aching joints
- Immune weakness
How To Improve Your Liver’s Ability To Detoxify
- Avoid foods you’re sensitive to. Food sensitivities can put additional stress on your liver.
- Eat liver-protective foods. Beets are a great liver supporting food. Also include foods high in antioxidants like organic grapes and blueberries, and sulphur amino acids found in nuts and seeds, egg yolks, red peppers, garlic, onions, and broccoli.
- Eat lightly and let yourself have 12 hours between meals overnight. This means that if you have a snack at 9pm, try not to eat again until 9am.
- Drink lots of purified water. Get a good water filter; tap water just doesn’t cut it.
- Get enough protein in your diet. This isn’t just meat, but also the protein found in things like quinoa, avocado, spirulina, beans, etc. A high quality protein supplement (from the health food store) is also a good option for vegans/vegetarians who may not be getting enough protein in their diet. (I use hemp protein)
- Avoid foods like: Coffee, tea (non-herbal), soda, alcohol, sugar, and artificial sweeteners like aspartame, Splenda, high fructose corn syrup, etc.
- Get enough fiber in your diet. Foods like beans, while grains, brown rice, nuts, apples, oatmeal, and crunchy vegetables are excellent sources of fiber.
- Avoid trans fats and hydrogenated fats. They are bad.
- Reduce the amount of refined and simple carbohydrates in your diet; primarily in processed things like cake, candy, cookies, soda, white bread & pasta, and sugary cereals.
- Include more dark green leafy veggies in your diet
- Supplement with probiotics.
- Take a high-quality daily multivitamin (from the health food store) that contains selenium, calcium, zinc, magnesium, iron, vitamin C and B2.
- Sleep! Get enough of it.
- Try to reduce your stress levels and/or try stress reduction techniques like yoga and meditation.
- Don’t smoke and avoid cigarette smoke in your environment.
- Get some sun! Not too much… but some.
The proper function of your liver is so vital to how your body handles its atmosphere and what is ingested. It’s important you take care of it. There are toxins in our air, our food, our furniture, and our skincare products. Keeping your liver working as efficiently as possible is a huge part in keeping those everyday toxins from overloading us.
Some cleanses can actually help with liver function too. This is primarily due to the fact that while we are cleansing, we are not shoving junk food in our bodies. It’s the break the body needs to get back on track. So if you want to do a week long juice cleanse, go for it. It’s not necessary, but it might still help.
Prescription for Dietary Wellness
Phyllis Balch, James Balch. Avery Pub. Group. 1998. Print
Danielle Perrault. Ontario. CSNN Publishing, 2013. Print.
Nutritional Pathology – Third Edition
Brenda Lessard-Rhead. Ontario. CSNN Publishing, 2015. Print.
Eating Alive: Prevention Thru Good Digestion
Jonn Matsen, Jeanne Martin, Nelson Dewey. Crompton Books. 1988. Print
The contents of this website are for informational purposes only and should not be considered any type of medical advice. The information provided in this website should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health condition or disease, and should not be substituted for professional care. If you suspect or have a medical condition, consult an appropriate health care provider.