Does your liver need some love?
The liver is the largest organ in the body and carries out some vital roles, the main one being breaking down and removing toxins and chemicals from the body. This can include:
- Used hormones
- Medications and supplements
- Chemicals such as parabens that can be found in cosmetics and toiletries.
- Chemicals in foods such as chargrilled meat or processed foods.
We want to ensure that any toxins are broken down and removed from the body as efficiently as possible. But sometimes our bodies can become overwhelmed if it has too much work to do from breaking down medications and detoxifying the food and drink that we put in our body. This results in sub-optimal health and the build-up of waste products.
The extra food and drink we have at Christmas and New Year can put an extra strain on the liver and so this can be a good time of year to start giving your liver some love.
But for anyone with a hormonal imbalance (such as PMS, endometriosis, PCOS or menopausal symptoms) or who takes painkillers or other medications, then taking some steps to support your liver will help to reduce any hormone imbalance.
There are plenty of foods you can incorporate into your diet to support your liver, these are my top six.
- Keep hydrated – drinking 1-2 litres of fluid a day helps to eliminate toxins. Filtered water means there are less toxins for the liver to remove. Remember this can include water, smoothies, herbal teas and soups.
- Start the day with 250-500ml of warm water and the juice of half a lemon to stimulate the liver and digestive system. This can also help to keep the bowels moving and reduce constipation, so ensuring toxins are removed from the body.
- Cruciferous vegetables – kale, cabbage, collard greens, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, watercress, rocket, radishes, all help the liver detoxification process and the breakdown of hormones. They also provide plenty of antioxidants to help protect the liver.
- Sulphur rich vegetables – such as onions and garlic, help support the liver to detoxify.
- Turmeric –protects the liver and supports it with the detoxification process. Turmeric also increases bile flow. Bile is produced by the liver to help with the digestion of fats and so turmeric can also support digestion.
- Berries- increase your intake of blueberries, cranberries, raspberries and strawberries. All berries help support the liver detoxification process. They are also a great source of antioxidants and protect the liver.
As well as adding in foods that support the liver, try to minimise substances that give the liver more work to do such as smoking, alcohol, chargrilled meats, processed foods, and sugar.
Try to get plenty of liver supporting foods in your diet this January to help your liver get back on track.
The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this blog are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this blog. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this blog. Emma Belton Nutrition disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this blog.