Getting people to love their liver has been my number one mission lately (if you’re a typically healthy person, it’s easy to take your liver function forgranted!). This kick butt organ simply doesn’t get enough attention for all that it does for us.
Serving over eighty crucial physiological functions, more than any other organ in the body, your liver processes EVERYTHING you eat or drink and stores most of your nutrients. It should be one of the first things to consider when it comes to maintaining health.
In Chinese Medicine, the liver is referred to as “The General” and it’s considered to be the master of our defenses. The liver is the guy who’s down in the trenches, rallying the troops, and making sure there’s a safe space for the system to run smoothly
As we move into spring, our liver starts to kick into high gear and issues surface more readily. Our “General” is working some overtime and needs a little extra attention right now.
Here are five ways I integrate liver support into my daily habits. I like these five because most of them are foods as well. You could combine them with a juice, steep in a tea, add them to your dinner menu, or simply take in supplement form.
Milk Thistle Supplement
Milk thistle is one of the best medicinal herbs for liver cell support. The plant chemicals in the seed are the only known substance with the ability to regenerate liver cells. It also has the ability to stimulate the lymphatic system, which is equally as important for detox. I like the Gaia Milk Thistle or Pure Synergy Milk Thistle supplements to try to take this everyday or every other day.
Turmeric is one of the most potent anti-inflammatory foods available. It supports the liver by aiding in the metabolism of cholesterol and scavenges free radicals. It makes a great addition to stir-fry and becomes more potent when paired with black pepper. I also juice the fresh root or steep it as a tea. Kept in the freezer, the root will last for quite a long time. If supplements are more your style, I recommend Gaia Turmeric Supreme or Pure Synergy Turmeric.
Dandelion is bitter, which means it’s able to stimulate the liver’s digestive abilities. It kick starts the liver into high gear and gets it ready to flush toxins. I’ll often have a cup of Traditional Medicinals Dandelion Tea on an empty stomach about 30 minutes before a meal.
Asparagus is a potent liver healer. It improves our liver’s ability to process and break down alcohol and it does this by increasing the quantity of enzymes responsible. When seasonally available, I throw fresh asparagus into my morning green juice. Move over kale and spinach, let asparagus do some work.
Barley Juice Extract Powder
Barley Juice Extract Powder is my go to green to help support liver detox. It helps alkalize the system and aids the liver in breaking down fat. It also helps combat heavy metal toxicity by binding to substances, like mercury, and guiding it out of the system. I take Vimergy’s Barley Juice Extract daily. It can be taken on its own or mixed with a fresh green juice.