Good Liver health is fundamental to our overall health and wellbeing.
“The liver is one of the most dynamic organs in the body and it supports many functions,” reveals Jeff Butterworth, naturopathic physician, author and co-owner of Happy Healthy You, an online naturopathic hub that supports female health and hormonal changes. “Its main function is to clean the blood, however it also is involved in bile production, excretion of hormones, drugs and cholesterol, metabolism of fats, protein and carbohydrates, as well as storage of many vitamins and minerals.”
What Happens When We Neglect Liver Health?
“The liver can become damaged quite easily, resulting in a fatty liver,” explains Jeff. “Alcohol is one of the big culprits for developing a fatty liver, however sugar plays an equal role. For women in particular, the liver plays a vital role in hormone breakdown and metabolism. If the liver is not working well then conditions such as oestrogen dominance can develop. Symptoms may develop such as weight gain, mood swings, fluid retention, heavy periods, fibroids and fibrocystic breasts.”
There are myriad ways to support liver health and even heal some of the damage inflicted by the fun we’ve had over the summer break.
Make Your Own Liver Health Tonic
You’ll need 25ml of lemon juice, some sliced ginger and turmeric powder, each the size of a ten cent piece, and a dandelion tea bag. Add 500ml of boiling water and let steep and cool. “Drink this every day to help support liver health,” suggests Jeff.
This is especially important if you’re drinking alcohol, but it’s important to drink up to two litres of water a day to support optimal liver health. Jeff recommends: “either add a glass of soda water in between drinks or add soda to alcoholic drinks to dilute them.”
Reach for Pro-Biotics
Coconut water kefir, kombucha and other fermented drinks are a great way of introducing pro-biotics into your body. “The live probiotics enhance digestive function and liver clearance,” explains Jeff.
Take A Month Off
After the silly season, you liver health might be a bit compromised. Consider going dry for a month, and doing a gentle cleansing program. Feb Fast is a fantastic initiative and a good way to stick to your goals. As you help to raise money for Australia’s youth, you will be incentivised to continue on your health journey. Likewise, Happy Healthy You’s free 8 week program or 28 day RESET program can both give you the recharge you need. “It supports liver health as well as overall wellness,” says Jeff.
Take a Daily Tonic
If you don’t have the time or inclination to make your own liver tonic, try taking a daily supplement like Happy Liver, $29.95, WellCo The Super Booster Liver Tonic, $90, or Australian By Nature Liver Tonic Milk Thistle Capsules, $39.70.