11 Foods To Cleanse Your Liver and LOSE WEIGHT – Saturday Strategy
POSTED ON April 22, 2016 BY Drew Canole
I am sure you’ve heard all about cleanses – and you know we like our juice cleanses at Fitlife! But do you know WHY people cleanse – aside from the potential physical benefits?
There are a lot of reasons people may want to focus on cleansing, one of the main ones being:
And why is that so important? Well, let’s take a look.
What Is The Role Of The Liver?
The liver is the 2nd largest organ in your body – after your skin – and sits on the right side of your stomach. It weighs about 3 pounds, is responsible for over 500 functions and performs 200 of those functions for your body simultaneously every day.
At any given time of the day your night, your liver contains around 10% of your total blood volume. It pumps about 3 liters through every two minutes!
The liver is vital for survival and spends most of the day performing the following tasks:
The liver works with other systems in the body to digest, absorb and process food. After food passes through the small intestine it is absorbed and channeled through veins which eventually lead to something called the portal vein. The portal vein directs all the blood through the liver before it is taken to the rest of the body.
Separating Waste From Nutrients
Once blood from the small intestine enters the liver, the liver separates toxins and waste and sends them out of the body through your urine and stool. It then takes out the useful nutrients to synthesize into hundreds of biochemicals that your body needs for daily functioning.
The liver is also the main hub for hormone breakdown! Your body creates hormones like estrogen and testosterone and, once used, sends excess amounts to the liver to be broken down into bile and then sent through the colon to be excreted.
The protein serum that makes up a large portion of your blood is created primarily by the liver. Real, functional blood is something that we CANNOT create artificially.
The liver has an important relationship with the gallbladder.
It produces bile that is stored in the gallbladder, and eventually secreted for proper fat digestion.Remember, fat is not all bad. The right kinds actually help you BURN fat – but that only works if your liver and gallbladder are on point.
Metabolize Prescription Drugs
Without the liver you would be unable to use/metabolize any drugs or medications. The liver converts drugs into a form that our body can actually use. Without the liver you would take a pill and it would not do a thing for you!
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. The liver is able to convert amino acids and make them into proteins.
When you stand out in the sun you absorb energy in the form of vitamin D3. Once absorbed the body carries vitamin D3 to the liver where combines with extra oxygen and hydrogen molecules to eventually become the type of vitamin D that our body can use. Vitamin D is essential for strong healthy bones.
Extra Vitamin and Nutrient Storage
Your liver is kind of like a warehouse; it pulls extra vitamins and nutrients from the foods you eat and stores them for later use. When your body needs them and you haven’t eaten anything recently it will send them to your body’s cells.
The liver is responsible for converting the glucose you have consumed from carbohydrate rich foods into glycogen, which is stored in the liver and released between meals to keep your energy levels high.
Fact: the liver is your only internal organ that can heal and regrow its own damaged tissue! And it does this in just 30 days! That’s pretty amazing.
What Things Can Damage The Liver?
There are many factors which can slow down your liver’s ability to function at its best.
Eating a diet:
high in fat
and other foreign materials
… makes the liver work harder and can cause it to become bogged down or too fatty to function properly.
Mercuryand other heavy metals also take a toll on your liver’s natural detoxification process.
Most of us are dealing with some sort of metal toxicity – and most of us don’t even know it! (you can actually get this tested with your Naturopathic Doctor or Functional Medicine Doctor really easily).
That’s why having awareness around what you put in and on your body is so important.
Our liver also helps to process toxins that we breathe in from the air. Cities that are polluted and full of smog can take a large toll on the liver’s health.
Many studies have found that pollution may cause liver toxicity, swelling and steatosis.
Fact:Every vertebrate (living creature with a spinal cord) in the whole world has a liver. They are THAT important.
What Happens When The Liver Is Overtaxed?
Your liver is doing its absolute best to take care of you.
When there are toxins that the liver is unable to process, it stores them in fat cellsin an attempt to keep them out of your bloodstream where they would otherwise cause serious damage.
Any time there is congestion or toxic overload in the liver, you won’t feel your best. Some symptoms that your liver is working overtimeinclude:
Age spots and other marks on your skin
Running out of energy in the afternoon
Inability to lose weight
Mood swings, bursts of anger, irritability or anxiety
Boating and gas
Chronic fatigue, muscle aches
Bad breath and body odor
If ignored, these symptoms can worsen over time and cause serious problems for your liver and overall health. And I know you don’t want that!
If you cannot store glycogen well (which is the liver’s responsibility), you will be prone to hypoglycaemia. You may get sugar cravings and feel tired, weak, jittery or moody if you haven’t eaten for several hours. You may also experience poor quality sleep because your blood sugar is unstable throughout the night.
Your thyroid gland manufactures T4 but it is an inactive hormone. In order to be activated, it must be converted into T3. The majority of that conversion occurs in your liver.
T3 is necessary for efficient metabolism in every cell of your body. If you do not have sufficient levels, you can feel tired, bloated, depressed and you will likely gain weight. You can have a perfectly healthy thyroid gland, but if your liver is sluggish you may still have a thyroid hormone deficiency.
Type 2 Diabetes
Your liver is about 10% fat. If the liver’s fat percentage goes above 10% it is called “fatty liver”. When the liver contains too much fat it become unable to store glycogen efficiently and this can lead to problems like type 2 diabetes.
Funny Colored Poop
Did you know that the bile created by the liver is what’s responsible for the color of your poop? Yep. If it’s not brown, there may be a sign that your liver is out of whack.
Like I mentioned before, the liver is responsible for breaking down excess hormones. If it becomes backed up or “bogged down” with fat and toxins, these hormones won’t be disposed of properly and can end up in your bloodstream. This can cause conditions such as estrogen dominance, PMS, migraines, irregular periods, endometriosis, fibroids and even infertility.
Fact:The Greeks considered the liver to be the home of all human emotions. According to Greeks, the liver was the organ which was closest to divine presence.
Liver Detox Strategy
The liver is actually quite capable at detoxing on its own, and most liver “cleanse” programs have little or no scientific backing.
Studies HAVE found that eating certain wholesome foods and herbs may significantly improve liver function and reduce symptoms of liver distress.
Instead of a typical cleanse, we recommend supporting your liver’s natural ability to detoxify by giving it the building blocks of success: REAL FOOD.
Certain foods have been studied for their powerful, healing benefits specific to the liver.
Green leafy vegetables have large amounts of antioxidants and enhance phase 2 detoxification of the liver. (study)
Cruciferous vegetables(such as radishes) up-regulate enzyme activity in both phase 1 and 2 of liver detoxification processes. (study)
Beetshave been found to have a protective and balancing effect on the liver. (study)
Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, may have a protective effect against mercury exposure in the liver. (study)
Lemons help to boost enzyme activity in the liver and other organs and may help combat diet-induced obesity. (study)
Dandelionhas powerful antioxidant, diuretic and choleretic properties that increase bile secretion from the liver and are believed to lower or slow down oxidative-related lipid peroxidation. This reduces risk of diseases related to oxidative stress. (study)
Artichokecontain choleretic and cholagogue properties that stimulate bile production in the liver and also help it to discharge when needed. Studies have shown that artichoke may help to decrease cholesterol and fat levels in the liver.
Walnutshelp to reduce excess cholesterol levels in the liver. (study)
Appleshave been shown to have many beneficial effects on the liver. (study)
Research has shown that chelation therapy using a combination of chlorella and cilantro removes readily available metals from the liver and body. Nature is amazing!
Taking good care of your liver will bring increased energy, better sleep, a clearer mind and overall improved health.
THAT is why I love taking care of my liver with great FOODS – Superfoods and my favorite detoxifying, fat burning, youth enhancing drink – ORGANIFI!
Add everything into the juicer, then drink immediately for best results!
No time to juice? Grab some Organifi, which is loaded with superfoods including turmeric to help with detoxification!
Your liver is one of your body’s most important organs for detoxification, and it is important that you take good care of it.
You really don’t need fancy concoctions from the health foods store or a lengthy detox protocol in order to take care of your liver. Mother nature has provided an ABUNDANCE of healing foods that are designed perfectly to keep all your organs in the best shape possible!
Focus your life around real, whole foods that are packed with vitamins and minerals and micronutrients. When you do this you will find energy and vitality that you didn’t even know was possible!
What is your experience with liver detoxification? What are your favorite cleansing foods? Share below!
Drew Canole is a rockstar in the world of fitness, nutrition and mindset, with a huge heart for others and doing his part to transform the world, one person at a time.
As the founder and CEO of Fitlife.TV, he is committed to sharing educational, inspirational and entertaining videos and articles about health, fitness, healing and longevity. He is also a best selling author and the founder of Organifi, an organic, incredibly delicious greens powder, chock-full of superfoods to make juicing easy no matter your busy schedule.
During my FitLife transformation, I lost 70 pounds! That's why I signed up for the protocol, but the most exciting result is that I found ME in the process. I had been hiding under a pile of pounds, self-doubt, and grief! FitLife changed my life and I knew I had to share it with others.
-Lynne, Longwood FL
I started with Fitlife back in 2011-2012…I wrote into Fitlife asking for an extreme amount of help. I was 300 pounds, with high cholesterol, and Drew helped me transform my life. I lost over 130 pounds and I no longer have high cholesterol. Not only did I lose weight, so did my husband, who lost over 70 pounds!