Nothing in our bodies is there by accident, and each and every cell, tissue and organ serves a valid purpose as designed by our Creator.
While it’s hard to say that a certain organ is more important than another, one organ that puts in a valiant effort 24/7 to keep you above the ground and healthy is your liver!
The liver deserves special mention because of its incredibly wide range and number of functions and the fact that it deals with challenges both within your body and from your external environment.
But unlike your other organs and systems, unfortunately you don’t always get glaring warning signs when something is awry with your liver…so yours may be suffering and you don’t even know it.
Let’s take a look at some of your liver’s most important, life-saving functions and see how yours might be doing.
Your hardworking liver
Unlike other parts of your body, liver issues don’t necessarily jump right out at you.
As a matter of fact, your liver can still function when up to 70 percent of its capacity is lost! So, many people don’t even know they have a liver problem until it’s practically getting ready to shut down.
Your liver performs over 500 functions that are all essential to life and health, but here are five of the most critical:
1- Producing bile
In addition to breaking down fats, bile helps your body absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.
Bile also is the "escort" for toxins that your liver filters out of your system. The toxin-drenched bile gets absorbed by fiber in your intestinal tract and is whisked out the back door when Nature calls.
But if bile secretion is too low, toxins can accumulate, and your liver can actually become constipated just like your gut!
2- Regulating cholesterol and hormones
Although you do get some cholesterol from food, the vast majority is made by your liver.
Your liver closely monitors your cholesterol level. When you take cholesterol in with food, it temporarily backs off on its own production of cholesterol until more is needed.
So truly, the health of your liver is the primary indicator of whether you'll have a cholesterol problem—not your diet!
Note that statins only make the problem worse because they shut down your liver’s ability to make cholesterol, as well as open you up to a myriad of side effects.
Poor liver function can also lead to hormone-related conditions.
For example, PMS, fibrocystic breast disease, ovarian cysts, uterine fibroids, and cancers of the breast, ovaries and uterus are all associated with elevated estrogen, and that can be the result of your liver not breaking down and eliminating old estrogen like it should.
3- Controlling blood sugar
Your liver works with your pancreas and adrenal glands to control your blood sugar level.
If your liver isn't carrying out its part of the cycle properly, you are a candidate for Type 2 diabetes and increased fat storage.
4- Filtering blood and detoxing
About two quarts (8 cups) of blood pass through your liver EVERY SINGLE MINUTE.
Although that sounds like a lot, a healthy liver can efficiently handle 99 percent of the toxins you take in before they enter circulation and make you sick.
But if your liver is NOT healthy, toxins will begin accumulating in your cells, tissues and organs, creating a perfect breeding ground for disease.
5- Immune health
Most people don’t realize this, but the liver is an important part of your immune system.
When you take in bacteria, viruses or fungi with your food, the immune cells in your lower GI tract typically fight off those microbes. But if they get past this first line of defense, they are carried by the hepatic portal to the liver.
The liver contains a high concentration of phagocyte immune cells, which in turn engulf and destroy the dangerous microbes, thereby keeping you free of sickness.
The various signs
The signs and symptoms of a liver problem are varied and can include:
- Intolerance to greasy foods
- Foul smelling stools or urine
- Bitter taste in your mouth
- Grayish skin or yellowing in the whites of your eyes
- Bad breath/halitosis
- Excessive body odor
- Fatigue or headache after eating
- Dry skin or hair
- Right sided abdominal pain
- Water retention
- Pain in big toes or pain that radiates along the outside of your leg
- Blood in stools
- Elevated blood cholesterol and/or triglycerides
The biggest challenge to your humble liver
Environmental pollution, chlorinated water, household chemicals, herbicides and pesticides all put tremendous stress on our livers to clean everything up.
But the biggest challenge to your liver is: YOU.
Habits such as eating processed and fast food, drinking soda, smoking, using recreational drugs, drinking too much alcohol or too little water, and overusing prescription and OTC drugs drain the life out of our livers.
But your liver isn't something you can be without!
So it’s time for you to take responsibility for your liver’s health before it’s too late!
Ways to pamper your liver
Here are some surefire ways to help preserve the health of your precious liver:
Support it with your diet
Have a diet of real fiber-rich foods which will help your liver in eliminating toxins with your BMs. If you want some great ideas for delicious dishes featuring nutrient and fiber-packed real foods (as well as ways to help support tip-top digestion) check out my Great Taste No Pain health system.
Also, limit your fructose consumption to one piece of fresh fruit each day, and avoid sources of high fructose corn syrup (especially soda). Fructose is very taxing on the liver.
Also, incorporate onions and garlic into your diet, as they help your liver escort heavy metals out of your body.
Pamper your liver with turmeric
Turmeric is a very potent and proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.
It has been shown to have a marked beneficial effect on several conditions and systems, including cancers, brain disorders, autoimmune conditions and…liver protection!
In fact, turmeric helps restore liver enzyme levels and even stimulates the repair of a damaged liver!
If you want to unleash the impressive power of turmeric to support your liver and other health goals, look no farther than our Optimal Turmeric Blend.
It provides a soothing 750 mg of organic turmeric, plus black pepper fruit extract, which enhances absorption of the turmeric.
Watch what you’re drinking
Drink mainly filtered water throughout the day—at least eight 8 oz. glasses should be your minimum.
Also limit alcohol to a drink or two, preferably with a meal, and avoid soda at all cost—both regular and diet.
If you smoke or do recreational drugs, please stop. If you need help quitting, there are many programs out there for you to explore. Keep in mind acupuncture can be a tremendous help.
Also, if you are on any medications, talk to your doctor about reducing your dose or possibly weaning off them altogether. There are natural alternatives to many drugs—here are some examples:
- Omega-3 fish oil has been medically proven to help safely and naturally lower blood pressure. Check out our VitalMega-3 fish oil formula, which provides 1,200 mg of pure wild-caught fish oils, including the brain-loving EPA and DHA fats.
- Herbs like mastic gum, licorice and ginger are very effective against occasional heartburn and are far safer than Tums, Nexium or Pepto Bismol. Our outstanding Gastro BeCalm Blend contains these natural digestive soothers.
- Ashwagandha has a 2,500-year history of supporting liver function, better sleep, healthy cholesterol levels and much more! Take advantage of this superstar of Ayurvedic medicine in our very own Ashwa Blend Gummies.
Do all you can to help support the health of your precious liver.
And it will return the favor with a healthier you for years to come!
To your health,