Your liver helps your body filter out unhealthy substances, known as toxins, so blood is kept as clean as possible. Basically, the liver kicks poisons to the curb so that you stay as healthy as possible. Blood with increased levels of toxicity can take a toll on your body, leading to heart damage and a compromised immune system. In turn, you may notice problems with weight gain, allergies, fatigue, bloating, abdominal pain, acid reflux, and skin blotching. The liver also plays a role in digestion, so problems with the organ can make it difficult to properly digest fatty foods—another telltale sign that the liver needs help.
Many times, proper nutrition is the answer when it comes to achieving optimal well-being or even reversing certain ailments. To keep your health on track, make sure you keep the following liver-friendly foods in your home.
Remember A, B, C
Avocados (A), beets (B) and cruciferous (C) vegetables (e.g. broccoli and leafy greens) are instrumental for good liver health. Avocados contain compounds said to help repair the liver; in fact, one study discovered that consuming up to two avocados weekly for just one month has the ability to fix a damaged liver.
As for beets, they contain flavonoids (or phytonutrients), which do everything from ridding the body of damaging free radicals to helping cells communicate and carry out complex processes. It’s for these reasons that Canadian nutritionist Hermeet Suri encourages people to eat more beets—their flavonoids boost liver health.
You can never go wrong with eating cruciferous vegetables, so it’s unsurprising that they assist in maintaining an optimally-functioning liver. The likes of cabbage, broccoli and kale contain organic compounds that boost digestion, which (as noted above) is an important role for the liver.
Garlic contains allicin and selenium, which are natural compounds that have the ability to activate toxin-flushing compounds in the liver. These compounds vastly aid the liver’s detoxification process, making it an excellent addition to meals.
This soothing tea is brimming with antioxidants that are particularly strongly linked to preventing fat accumulation in the liver. Toxins are kept at bay as a result.
Vitamin C and antioxidants are considered extremely powerful liver cleansers. Fortunately, grapefruit contains both, making it an outstanding choice when it comes to detoxifying the liver. It has the ability to wipe out toxins and carcinogens from the organ, so enjoy it often. Of course, there are certain medications believed to negatively interact with grapefruit or grapefruit juice, so double check with your doctor before eating this citrus fruit.
Lemon has gained a large amount of traction throughout the health-conscious community. Experts advocate frequently adding its juices to water, especially first thing in the morning. It kick-starts the body and also helping the liver eliminate toxins by detoxifying the body. Additionally, it helps the liver with digestion, so this one’s a win-win on all fronts.
Nuts are considered part of a healthy, balanced diet not only because they taste great and boost brain health, but also because they’re high in omega-3 fatty acids. This means they do a great job in aiding the liver’s cleansing process. These delicious nuts have the ability to oxygenate blood and remove an especially worrisome health threat—ammonia.
This spice adds serious zing to meals, and it can also help purify your liver immensely. Its active ingredient—curcumin—has often been touted as having multiple health benefits. When it comes to your liver, turmeric actively provides protection, and has even been shown to actually regenerate damaged liver cells.
As with every aspect of your body, it’s important to eat a healthy balance of fresh, whole foods when trying to protect your liver, with an emphasis on fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds like the ones mentioned in this article. Lean meats are also beneficial, depending on your dietary choice. Do your best to refrain from adding sugars to foods and from eating overly processed foods containing unpronounceable ingredients, chemicals, flavorings and additives. Further, be sure to add plenty of water, physical activity, rest and stress reduction to this mix. Your liver, and overall health, should improve as a result.