A reddish brown lobe that sits on your body’s right side, the liver is a multifunctional organ and one we cannot do without. It helps convert the nutrients from the food we eat into essential components of the blood, stores vitamins and minerals for later use and also produces proteins and enzymes vital to maintain the hormonal balance in our bodies. Not just that, the liver is the defacto protector of our immune system and helps our bodies fight off infections and also makes bile, essential for digestion. Basically, there’s an awful lot of work a liver has to do – and to support it to keep us healthy is a wise step indeed. While a balanced diet and regular exercise will go a long way in doing just that, some foods are especially kind to the liver. So go ahead and gorge on these 10 liver-friendly foods that in turn will make you happy, healthy and glow with vitality…
- Garlic: Ah, the goodness of garlic. Garlic activates digestive enzymes that in turn flush out the toxins and keep the liver stress free. The natural compounds contained by garlic (and to an extent by onions too) -- allicin and selenium -- are nature’s liver cleansers as well.
- Citrus: Be it grapefruit, oranges or lemons – citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C which is an antioxidant that flushes your body of toxins, thereby lessening the strain on an overburdened liver.
- Beets: These ruby-colored root vegetables are rich in beta-carotenes and other plant-flavonoids that help the liver perform that much better and also reduce the oxidative stress on the liver with their antioxidant function.
- Leafy, Green Veggies: Leafy and crunchy greens like spinach, lettuce and mustard greens can reduce heavy metal toxicity in the body, as well as neutralize many chemicals and pesticides in our food and become a blanket protection for the liver instead.
- Green Teas: Green teas are rich in phytonutrients called catechins that help the liver work that much better.
- Avocados: Think avocados and you must think of glutathione, a compound that aids the liver in cleansing the body of toxins.
- Cruciferous Vegetables: Broccoli and Brussels sprouts may not be your favorite veggies to munch on but they are great for the liver since they increase glucosinolate levels in the body, which in turn helps the body make more digestive enzymes.
- Turmeric: A spice so often used in Asian cuisine, turmeric aids the body in fat digestion and increases bile production. It’s also an anti-inflammatory and can help heal a stressed liver faster.
- Walnuts: High in glutathione (like avocados) and omega-3 fatty acids, walnuts help support our liver and lend it support to further detox the body.
- Apples: Apples are high in pectin and pectin is a fiber that can really help cleanse the digestive tract. This, in turn, reduces pressure on the liver and makes it function all the better.
We hope these foods make your liver be its healthiest – and in case it’s your pancreas that needs help, well, go through the best foods for them as well.