There are many good foods for the liver that can help detoxify this organ naturally, stimulating the removal of toxic waste from the body. The list that I will mention below focuses mainly on foods that help clean the liver or improve, directly or indirectly, its functions. These foods may be the basis of a hepatoprotective diet, provided that the forms of preparation are respected, since in many cases those suffering from hepatotoxicity also have symptoms of dyspepsia or indigestion. To learn more click here.
How does the diet of modern society influence the health of the liver?
The diet of modern society is highly unfavorable for the health of the liver. Excessive consumption of food or following a food based on processed foods, causes us to be exposed to environmental pollutants or stress, which affects the liver’s functioning causing it to overload. There comes a time when this organ can not process toxins and fat in an efficient way. The following are some of the risk factors associated with impaired hepatic function.
· Low levels of potassium.
· Alcohol abuse.
· Intravenous drug use.
· Blood transfusions before 1992.
· Exposure to certain industrial chemicals and environmental toxins.
· Diet high in saturated fats and processed foods.
· Tattoos or body piercing.
· High levels of triglycerides in the blood.
· Certain prescription medications such as acetaminophen.
· Viral infections.
· Autoimmune diseases.
Good foods to detoxify and cleanse the liver
Avocado has been shown to protect and repair the liver naturally, as it contains a high amount of glutathione- producing compounds . Glutathione is the most important antioxidant compound in liver cells. For this reason, avocado can help increase the liver’s ability to be cleaned.Research has even shown that eating one or two avocados per week can make a big difference in the health status of the liver.Avocados can be enjoyed with virtually any meal (salads, sweet dishes, etc.) and are available all over the world.
Garlic is a superfood , known for its anticancer and anti-infective properties and is also one of the best foods to cleanse the liver, as it is very useful in the liver repair processes. The benefits of garlic are not limited to its hepatoprotective properties; it contains sulfur substances with a high stimulating potential for regulatory liver functions. The liver enzymes responsible for carrying out the cellular functions of detoxification and repair are activated and stimulated by these compounds. In this way, the expulsion of toxins increases considerably. In addition to sulfur compounds, garlic contains allicin and selenium , two important nutrients that play an integral role in protecting the liver.
The turmeric can help uniquely enzymes that are responsible for the detoxification of carcinogenic compounds from the diet. The result is increased protection, and even regeneration of the affected liver cells. Turmeric is also responsible for improving the health of the gallbladder. These benefits are in addition to the amazing ability of turmeric to fight cancer. In one study UCLA researchers found that curcumin – the main active compound of turmeric – has anticancer properties. The laboratory found that the enzymes in the mouths of patients responsible for promoting cancer growth were inhibited by the administration of curcumin supplements. Ingestion of curcumin even blocked the spread of malignant cells.
4. Lemon and lime
Although not exactly one of the foods with higher dietary properties, mixing hot water with lemon or lime each morning could be one of the simplest and most advantageous methods of improving liver health. The high vitamin C and potassium content of lemons can help regulate biological functions. Some experts, specialists in biological ionization applied to human nutrition, have also stated that the liver is able to generate more enzymes after the intake of homemade lemonade.
Beets contain a unique blend of natural chemicals (phytochemicals) and minerals that make them excellent fighters for infections. They also help increase oxygen at the cellular level, so beet is an excellent detoxifying food. In addition to all the benefits mentioned above, beets also help stabilize the acid-alkaline balance of blood (pH), which in turn supports a healthy detoxification.
Cabbage contains numerous anti-cancer compounds and antioxidants, and helps the liver decompose excess hormones. It also cleanses the digestive tract and relieves stomach overload, which could be partly due to its antibacterial and antiviral properties . Cruciferous vegetables such as kale show potent detoxifying activity, including the neutralization of some of the harmful compounds found in cigarette smoke (and smoke from environmental pollution). They also contain a compound that helps the liver to produce adequate amounts of detoxifying enzymes. A recent study published in the journal Nutrition Research compared the cholesterol absorption capacity of cabbage to steam with cholestyramine, a cholesterol-lowering drug. Incredibly, cabbages improved the cholesterol absorption process by 13 percent more compared to the drug.
The seaweed may be the most underrated vegetable in the Western world. Studies from McGill University in Montreal showed that algae bind to radioactive waste in the body favoring its elimination. Radioactive waste can reach the body through some medical tests or through food that has been grown where the water or soil is contaminated. Algae also bind to heavy metals to help remove them from the body. In addition, it is an inexhaustible source of minerals and trace elements .
7. Green juices
It can be almost impossible to eat all the raw vegetables needed to make an effective liver cleanse. However, by extracting juice from a variety of raw vegetables, you can easily get 4-5 servings of fresh and organic vegetables that are needed. With altered liver function, vegetable juices have the added benefit of making vegetables easier to digest, and more readily available for absorption. Vegetables ideal for a detoxification of the liver include cabbage, cauliflower and brussels sprouts. While the combination may not sound very enjoyable, other vegetables can be added to the mix including carrots, cucumber or beetroot. All of these vegetables help reduce acid levels in the body, helping to create a healthier pH balance.
Organic fresh carrots are essential for liver cleansing. In the liver, beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A and helps eliminate toxins in the body. The high fiber content contributes to a healthy digestive system, accelerating the elimination of toxins from the body.
9. Sweet potatoes
Surprisingly, banana is not the richest food in potassium. It’s the potato. A single medium sweet potato contains about 700 milligrams of potassium, not to mention high fiber content and beta-carotene. A sweet potato only has 131 calories, however, it is rich in vitamins B-6, C, D, magnesium and iron. Although naturally sweet, sugars are released slowly into the bloodstream through the liver, without causing an increase in blood glucose.
10. Homemade Tomato Sauce
Potassium and other beneficial nutrients in tomatoes are concentrated significantly in a sauce, mash, or pasta. Thus, a cup of tomato puree contains 1065 milligrams of potassium, while 1 cup of fresh tomatoes contains only 400 milligrams. To make homemade tomato sauce, cut organic tomatoes in half and bake them face down in the oven for 30 minutes at 425 degrees until the skin has wilted. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Remove the skins and tritural with the blender slowly. Pour the sauce into a pot and cook over low heat until thick.
11. Beet and spinach leaves
Rich in antioxidants, beet leaves contain more than 1300 milligrams of potassium per cup. ¨ They can be taken with vegetable juices in raw salads. Organic fresh spinach is easily added to the diet, and is a good source of potassium, containing 840 milligrams per serving.
White beans and beans are rich in potassium, protein and fiber. They can be used in soups, salads or hummus .
Just 2 teaspoons of this rich natural syrup contain 10% of the daily recommended amount of potassium. In addition to potassium, molasses is rich in iron, calcium, manganese, and copper. It can be incorporated into the diet by replacing it with other natural sweeteners.
Providing 470 milligrams of potassium, bananas help in digestion, and release toxins and heavy metals from the body.
Thanks to its contribution of vitamin C, grapefruit is one of the foods with greater capacity for detoxification. Vitamin C contributes to the reduction of oxidative processes, which are the ones that generate free radicals and damage liver cells . In addition, grapefruit helps to stimulate the action of liver enzymes that are essential in waste disposal.
These nuts are among the highest food sources of the amino acid arginine . For this reason, nuts are a food with a high depurative power. They help the liver in the metabolism of ammonia, a highly polluting substance. In addition, walnuts contain the most important cellular antioxidant (glutathione) and omega-3 fatty acids. Because the latter are easy to oxidize, glutathione exerts a protective action against the oxidizing action of the free radicals generated in organic processes.
17. White Tea
In a clinical study published in the journal Nutrition and Metabolism it was shown that white tea can stimulate lipolysis, which is the process by which fats are metabolized to fatty acids and then oxidized. It can also prevent adipogenesis, ie fat deposition. On the other hand, white tea is a source of caffeine and epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), compounds with a high lipolytic power.
According to a study published in the Journal of Food Science , amino acids and minerals found in asparagus can relieve hangover symptoms and protect liver cells from toxins. These vegetables are also a natural diuretic, which helps to remove excess water from the body.
Broccoli has a high level of antioxidants and chlorophyll, and is rich in natural fiber that cleanses the body of carcinogens and other toxins. Broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and other members of the cruciferous family also contain glucosinolates that help the liver produce enzymes that aid in eliminating toxins and in digestion. Broccoli is also a good source of fat soluble in vitamin E , an antioxidant especially important for the liver.
Apples are rich in pectin, the soluble fiber that helps eliminate toxins and reduce the absorption of cholesterol, which greatly helps liver function. They are also rich in malic acid , a natural nutrient that removes carcinogens and other toxins from the blood. Granny Smith apples are especially rich in malic acid, as well as being one of the apple varieties most rich in antioxidants. All apples are excellent for the liver, however be sure to choose organic apples as they are one of the worst sources of pesticides.
Like garlic, onions are also rich in allicin , a compound that stimulates hepatic detoxification functions. They are also packed with potassium, fiber, phytonutrients and flavonoids that help fight infections and eliminate toxins, not only through the liver, but through other organs (intestines, skin, kidneys). To avoid possible indigestion, avoid eating them raw and give them a gentle baking. for more information just click here.