Herbs to Support Your Liver
The liver is the largest organ in our body that performs over 500 functions, including detoxification. Many would say that you can’t detox your liver because it detoxifies itself, but there’s where they fail to understand one thing. With the busy lives we run these days, the liver easily becomes overloaded and poisoned with the same toxins it’s supposed to process and break down. That’s why some extra support is highly beneficial for the liver and can help it function better over time.
What functions the liver has that are so important for the well-being of the body, you may ask? This organ has many functions, including breaking down and eliminating toxins that enter the bloodstream, processing and sorting the blood and nutrients returning from the digestive process, balancing cholesterol and hormones, and much more. Therefore, it’s crucial to have a properly functioning liver for the overall health of your physical body.
You can help your liver work better with a few simple changes in your lifestyle. Some of them include adding or eliminating certain foods and practices, while others involve taking some herbal supplements. In the following article, we list some herbs to support your liver as well as other things you can do to promote the healthy functioning of the organ.
Signs of a Healthy and Unhealthy Liver
The liver works in constant communication with your stomach, pancreas, gallbladder, and other parts of the digestive system, ensuring that our bodies use all the right nutrients from the foods. It also flushes out the toxins from the body, acting as a blood purifier and using only the necessary nutrients. If your liver is working well, it will keep your hormones at optimal levels and make you feel full of energy.
On the other hand, the overloaded liver won’t be able to break down toxins, and your overall health will be jeopardized. This can lead to hormonal disbalance and result in weight gain, irregular menstrual cycles, fatigue, insomnia, nausea, migraines, and more. Digestive issues might be another sign that your liver is not working properly. If you experience intolerance to fatty foods, chronic constipation, high sensitivity to alcohol or caffeine, and similar symptoms, it might be time to give your liver more attention.
If any of these symptoms show persistency, don’t hesitate to seek medical attention. Doctors will perform the necessary tests and find the root of your problems.
Herbs to Support Your Liver
There’s immense power in the herbs around us. We are just not accustomed to using them that much in the modern age. Our ancestors knew better, and they relied on herbs to prevent and treat health conditions. They used natural remedies and herb-based foods and drinks to boost their immune systems and promote body functioning.
We can do much good for our bodies if we remember to include herbs in our daily routine. Among all the health benefits they have, herbs are also known to support the liver and help it function better. In the following section, you’ll find a list of herbs that are good for this organ and an explanation of why each one of them is so beneficial.
Milk thistle is one of the most popular herbs for treating and supporting the liver. It might come as a surprise, but the plant’s seeds contain a flavonoid called silymarin, which is an antioxidant that optimizes liver function and improves detoxification. Traditional medicine relied heavily on using milk thistle to treat many liver conditions, especially hepatitis and alcoholic liver disease. Because of its ability to eliminate toxins and restore liver cells, milk thistle makes one of the first choices for those who are looking for pure herbs for liver regeneration.
You should only be careful not to use too much milk thistle for extended periods. The herb might cause some side effects such as nausea, bloating, and diarrhea.
Turmeric is a common spice used to make meals more tasty and give them a rich gold color. It’s also widely popular because of its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Along with promoting healthy body functioning, turmeric prevents various diseases, including ones related to the liver. It is known to protect the liver from oxidative stress and enhance its function by improving blood circulation. Furthermore, one substance of turmeric called curcumin is very effective in preventing liver damage caused by drug overdose, particularly paracetamol.
However, turmeric has some side effects and needs to be taken carefully. You can read more about the herb and the recommended intake here.
The root of burdock has been used for removing toxins from the body for a long time. The herb has natural diuretic properties and is rich in inulin and prebiotic starches. For that reason, it has a long history of being one of the most useful herbs for liver and kidney health.
We only recommend caution for people with bleeding disorders because burdock might increase the risk of bleeding. It also might cause allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to the Asteraceae/Compositae family.
Our ancestors highly favored dandelion soup for many reasons. The first one is most certainly affordability – the herb can be found everywhere and it costs nothing to make a tasty meal from it. The second reason, however, regards all the healthy benefits dandelion offers.
Dandelion provides high support to the liver, gallbladder, and kidneys. Both the leaves and the roots are beneficial and used for treating different health conditions. The root offers protection against the toxicity of alcohol and promotes natural detoxification in the body. The bitter compounds in dandelion motivate the process in the digestive tract and help with getting rid of fat and waste. Furthermore, dandelion protects liver cells against oxidative stress.
When it comes to the negative effects, dandelion might cause allergic reactions, stomach discomfort, or heartburn in some people. That’s why dandelion should be taken in balanced doses.
Ginger is a tasty and versatile herb that provides many benefits for our bodies. The root is very useful for the liver because it has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant powers. Ginger also protects from liver fibrosis, which is why it can be found in medical treatments. To sum things up, this herb lowers inflammation, removes toxins, reduces fibrosis, and increases the body’s natural antioxidants.
The herb does have some mild side effects, mainly heartburn, diarrhea, burping, and stomach discomfort. It also might increase menstrual bleeding in women.
Peppermint is widely used for both culinary and medical purposes. The herb has a huge calming effect on the nervous and digestive system, relieving pain in the stomach, reducing bloating, and treating other related conditions. It also stimulates the liver and gallbladder, promoting bile production and detoxification.
Even better, peppermint is a tasty herb you can use to make refreshing drinks daily. It makes one of the most commonly used ingredients in kitchens and you can experiment with it as much as you like. However, if you notice symptoms such as heartburn, dry mouth, nausea, and vomiting, you should stop consuming peppermint. These side effects are extremely rare but can happen.
Ways to Incorporate These Herbs into Your Life
If you want to introduce some of these herbs into your life, tea and tinctures make a good start. You can always hand-pick these herbs and make tea from them all on your own. However, if you don’t have access to them, we suggest getting liver support supplements from reliable companies. It’s crucial to take all-natural products without any additives and alcohols so you can support your liver adequately.
Greenbush Natural Products offers two concentrated extracts to help you enhance your health and keep your body functioning properly. These two products are made from pure herbs and don’t contain any additives. One of them contains dandelion and the other one milk thistle, so you get to choose the one that works best for you. Even better, you can get both extracts to mix them daily and provide better protection for the liver.
Foods to Support Your Liver
Another way to support your liver is by eating healthy meals. Vegetables, fruits, nuts, and berries are all foods good for the liver, and you’ll enjoy them all. Within a few simple steps, you can make tasty meals and keep your liver and body healthy. Here’s what we recommend:
Broccoli, Cauliflower, Kale, Cabbage, Brussels sprouts
Blueberries, Cranberries, and Grape
Grapefruit, Avocado, Lemon
Wasabi, Horseradish, Mustard
It’s important to remember that we can significantly improve the functioning of all our organs (not only the liver) by implementing healthy habits in our lifestyles. We tend to neglect the needs of the body and deprive it of enough sleep, healthy foods, and physical activities because we’re too busy with our daily duties and chores. However, no matter how much work we have for the day, we can always take an hour or two to give our body the attention it deserves. That way, we can keep all our organs at optimal performance, improve the overall health, and feel better about ourselves.
Things to Do
Along with using herbs and eating healthy foods to support your liver, you can also do so by leading a healthy lifestyle. There are some steps you can follow to make your body healthier on a daily basis, and they don’t even require much effort.
- Take the time to rest and provide your body with adequate sleep at night.
- Regulate your diet and keep it well balanced with live, unprocessed fruits and vegetables. If you’re overweight, you run at the risk of having fatty liver disease.
- Exercise regularly to keep the organs, muscles, and blood vessels in good condition.
- Drink enough water because it helps the liver get rid of wastes in the body.
Things to Avoid
On the opposite end, here are some things you might want to avoid for keeping your liver in the best condition:
- Avoid alcohol, processed foods, and pharmaceutical drugs. Alcohol can destroy liver cells, so keep the intake as low as possible. Drug overuse can also lead to serious health issues. Lastly, high-calorie meals, saturated fat, refined carbohydrates, and sugar are sworn enemies to your liver.
- Don’t share personal hygiene items because they might get contaminated. Also, avoid using needles that are dirty or you suspect they are contaminated in any way.
Herbs to Support Your Liver
Lastly, if you’re wondering how to support your liver in the best way, we recommend combining all of the listed habits, foods, and herbs. While herbs can be your great allies in supporting the liver, they only make one of the components leading to a healthy lifestyle. Thus, take your time to explore various dietary decisions and give your body the physical activity it needs. Over time, you’ll grow healthy habits and support your liver and entire body naturally, without even thinking much about it.
*INDIVIDUAL RESULTS MAY VARY. STATEMENTS IN THIS WEBSITE HAVE NOT BEEN EVALUATED BY THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION. THE FDA DOES NOT EVALUATE OR TEST HERBS AND HEALTH FOODS. THESE PRODUCTS ARE NOT INTENDED TO DIAGNOSE , TREAT, CURE OR PREVENT ANY DISEASE. FOR DIAGNOSIS OR TREATMENT CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN. USE HERBS IN MODERATION AND WATCH FOR ALLERGIC REACTIONS. REMEMBER THAT DIET, EXERCISE AND RELAXATION ARE EQUALLY IMPORTANT TO YOUR HEALTH.