How You Can Maintain Good Liver Health

Maintaining your liver health is one of the most important things that you can do to ensure a healthy life.

Your liver is a vital organ and gland that you cannot live without. Yes, your liver is also a gland since it manufactures and secretes bile. Glands make and secrete stuff, and can be an organ or parts of an organ.

It is located just below your diaphragm, and the lower part of your rib cage. The right lobe of your liver, which is the majority of this organ, is in the upper right part of your abdomen, while the left lobe is in the left upper abdomen.

The primary functions of your liver are to

  • Manufacture proteins
  • Store and metabolize fats and cholesterol
  • Store and metabolize carbohydrates
  • Make and secrete bile
  • Eliminates bodily toxins like bilirubin from the breakdown of red blood cells, and ammonia from the breakdown of proteins
  • And the detoxification of drugs, alcohol and environmental toxins.

Steps Toward Good Liver Health

Eat Healthy

A Mediterranean type of diet is the best diet for your liver. This style of eating includes a lot of fruit and vegetables, nuts, seeds, fish and extra virgin olive oil. It is low in saturated fats and sugars.

You want to concentrate on foods that are high in the essential fatty acids, especially the omega-3 fatty acids, and fiber. Use as little sugar and salt as possible.

Eat as little highly processed foods as possible. Eat fresh vegetables and fruits, whole wheat breads, brown rice, legumes and whole grain cereals like steel cut oats and hulled barley.

This is especially important if you have a family history of insulin resistance or fatty liver disease. Left untreated, these disease can lead to permanent scarring or cirrhosis of your liver.

Use Alcohol In Moderation

Abuse of alcohol can damage and destroy liver cells.

Excessive use of alcohol can lead to fat accumulation in liver cells (fatty liver disease), which can inhibit or prevent proper liver function, cause inflammation (hepatitis) and scarring (cirrhosis).

If you already have liver disease, alcohol will only make your disease worse.

Exercise Regularly

Frequent and proper exercise will help prevent fat accumulation in your liver, and increase essential blood flow to that vital organ.

Concentrate on full body exercises, and Interval Training routines.

Full or total body exercises involve more than one set of joints and major muscles groups. This type of exercise influences that hormone response in your body to prevent fat accumulation, and to burn away the fat that you already have. Examples are dumbbell squats, dumbbell lunges and the bicycle maneuver exercise.

Interval Training involves alternating between high intensity, fast paced workouts with low intensity, slow pace workouts. For example, start by walking or running as fast as you can for 1 minute, then walk or run at a slower pace for 2 minutes. You keep alternating between the two paces for an eighteen minute workout.

Believe it or not, Interval Training routines will get you into shape faster than long duration, one pace routines.

Don’t Abuse Medications

This is especially true of acetaminophen.

Drug abuse will damage your liver. Use all drugs according to directions, and with your doctor’s supervision.

Avoid Environmental Toxins

Limit your contact with cleaning products, insecticides and chemicals.

Don’t smoke.

References
American Liver Foundation – Liver Health and Wellness
MedicineNet – Liver
MedicineNet – Drug Induced Liver Disease

Take the necessary steps to maintain your Liver Health, and live a long and active life.

For additional information, see Fatty Liver Diet.

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