The New Year is a good time to give your liver a rest after the festive season. It is the biggest organ in your body and works very hard to try and keep us healthy. Its main functions include:
Breaking down and eliminating toxins including alcohol.
Balancing blood sugar by storing and releasing glycogen. If the liver fails to do this, fatigue, sugar cravings and weight gain may result.
Producing bile, which helps digestion by breaking down fat and removing excess cholesterol. Without it digestive disorders can result, including bloating, irritable bowel syndrome, nausea and the malabsorption of fat-soluble vitamins.
Breaking down and eliminating excess hormones.
Storing nutrient such as iron, copper, vitamins A, B12, D, E and K.
Tips to rejuvenate your liver:
Drink alcohol in moderation and avoid ‘saving up’ allowances to drink in one day.
Replace caffeine with plenty of water or herbal teas.
Exercise will help to oxygenate your blood and your liver.
Avoid high fat foods, especially processed ones containing hydrogenated fats.
Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables, in particular green leafy vegetables and foods rich in sulphur such as onions, garlic, broccoli, kale, cauliflower and cabbage.
Include spices in your cooking such as cinnamon, turmeric and liquorice.
Herbs such as milk thistle and artichoke can support the liver but don’t self prescribe without speaking to a qualified practitioner.