The Purpose and Functioning of The Liver.
Tips To Maintaining A Healthy Liver
The Purpose and Functioning of The Liver.
Tips To Maintaining A Healthy Liver
The Liver is amongst the most important and vital organs in the body. It is the largest solid organ present in the human body. The Liver is located in the upper right-hand portion of the abdominal cavity just beneath the diaphragm. It resides on the top of the stomach, right kidney, and intestines.
Our goal with this blog article is to discuss various liver functions and suggest some tips that you should adopt to ensure that your Liver stays healthy. So, stay tuned and continue reading this article until the end to grab all helpful information related to the Liver.
What is the Liver?
The Liver is amongst the most crucial organs found in the human body and is responsible for performing various functions. Unlike other organs, if a liver fails, it is very difficult to surgically fix or replace it. Hence, you must pay significant attention on how to improve the health of your Liver if this is a concern.
A healthy liver ensures the healthy functioning of your body. A human's Liver weighs about 3 pounds, is reddish-brown, and presents a rubber feel when touched. Usually, a person cannot feel the Liver because the rib cage protects it. Another interesting and unique fact is that the Liver is the only organ in the body that can regenerate itself.
Functions of the Liver
The Liver's primary function is to filter the blood from the digestive tract and then pass this filtered blood to the entire body. In addition to that, it performs plenty of other functions, such as converting the food we eat into essential blood components. Although more and more research is being conducted, studies up till now indicate that the Liver is responsible for performing more than 500 functions in a human body. Let's discuss some of the tasks performed by the Liver.
Bile is a digestive fluid produced and released by the Liver and is stored in the gallbladder. Bile eases digestion by breaking down fats into fatty acids, which can be easily taken into the body by the digestive tract. It helps the small intestine in breaking down and absorbing fats, cholesterol, and certain vitamins. Bile consists of cholesterol, Bilirubin, water, bile salts, and electrolytes.
Absorbing and Metabolizing Bilirubin
Bilirubin is a yellowish substance present in a human's blood. It is formed as a result of the breakdown of red blood cells. Bilirubin passes through a person's Liver, gallbladder, and digestive tract before finally being excreted. The Liver helps in absorbing and metabolizing this Bilirubin. Any condition that affects the functioning of your Liver may cause Bilirubin to build up in your blood. A buildup of Bilirubin in the blood leads to a condition called hyperbilirubinemia. When this happens, your Liver loses its ability to remove and process Bilirubin from the bloodstream.
Supports Blood Clotting
Another essential function performed by the Liver is that it helps in supporting blood clots. As you may know, vitamin K is needed to create certain coagulants that help in blood clotting. Bile is essential for the absorption of vitamin K and is created in the Liver. Hence, if the Liver does not produce enough bile, clotting would become quite challenging.
Metabolizing Fats and Carbohydrates
The Liver plays a role in metabolizing fats and carbohydrates making it easier for the body to digest. The carbohydrates are stored in the Liver, where they get broken down into glucose and pass into the bloodstream. They help in maintaining normal glucose levels. Carbohydrates are stored as glycogen and are released whenever a quick burst of energy is needed. In addition to that, bile produced by the Liver also helps in breaking down proteins for digestion.
Storing Vitamins and Minerals
The Liver serves as a storage house for vitamins A, D, E, K, and B12. These vitamins are stored in the Liver and are held as a backup for several years. Furthermore, the Liver also stores iron from hemoglobin in the form of ferritin and stores and releases copper. The iron released from hemoglobin gets stored in the Liver and is used to make the next generation of blood cells.
Filtering the Blood
An essential function of the Liver is filtering the blood. It removes compounds from the body, including hormones such as estrogen and aldosterone, and compounds from outside the body such as alcohol and other drugs. The Liver helps your body in fighting against infections by removing bacteria from the blood.
Helps in Developing Strong Immunity
The Liver is also responsible for performing immunological functions. It strengthens the immune system by fighting against infections and removing microorganisms from the bloodstream. The Liver is an integral part of the mononuclear phagocyte system. The Liver is known for containing a higher number of Kupffer cells that are involved in immune activity. These cells help in destroying any disease-causing agents that might reach the Liver through the gut.
How the Liver gets harmed?
The most harmful things for your Liver are:
=> Environmental toxins <=
=> Infectious organisms <=
=> Alcohol <=
=> Poor Diet <=
Environmental toxins and Infectious organisms
Exposure to harmful environmental toxins significantly alters the functioning of the Liver because the Liver keeps on trying to neutralize and deactivate these poisonous substances. Some of these environmental toxins include xylene, benzene, heavy metals, pesticides, cigarette smoke, and disinfectant byproducts.
The primary cause of liver inflammation is infectious organisms. Some of these infectious organisms are hepatitis viruses, with hepatitis B & C being the most dangerous. In addition to that, other chronic infections such as Lyme, aflatoxin, influenza, and mycotoxins can inflame and damage the Liver.
Alcohol and Poor Diet
Alcohol and poor diet are disastrous for your Liver. Alcohol has to go through the Liver's detoxification cycle to get metabolized and to be deactivated in the body. Consistent alcohol consumption damages the Liver by depleting the Liver's valuable glutathione, sulfur compounds, and methylating elements, including zinc, riboflavin, folate, B6, and B12.
Similarly, a diet high in processed foods containing toxic additives, preservatives, pesticides, GMO's, etc., drains the Liver from valuable sulfur compounds, glutathione, and methylating elements.
Individuals who habitually consume high amounts of alcohol and processed foods do not consume the key nutrients they need to produce glutathione, sulfotransferases, and methylating agents.
How to Maintain a Healthy Liver?
Having understood the importance of maintaining a healthy liver, you might be searching for some tips and tricks that you can adopt to keep your Liver healthy. Search no more. Here are a few tips that you can adopt to ensure the healthy functioning of your Liver.
Consume Foods that are Good for Your Liver
Adopting a healthy lifestyle and making some dietary changes can significantly improve the health of your Liver. Skip all those foods that are bad for your Liver, such as processed foods, refined foods, and some other food sensitivities such as gluten, peanuts, soy, pasteurized dairy, and corn.
Instead, add those foods to your diet which are healthy for your Liver. The best foods for your Liver are the ones rich in vitamin B, C, and trace minerals. Some of the foods that are best for your Liver include: Grapefruit => Green tea => Nuts
Fatty Fish => Avocados and Avocado Oil
Olive Oil => Ginger
Non-Starchy Vegetables => Grapes
Use Certified Organic Products
If you are experiencing liver complications, then I recommend using only certified organic, chemical-free products, including food choices, personal hygiene products, and even household cleaning agents. That's the best way of reducing your exposure to environmental toxins.
Adopt Liver Detoxification Lifestyle
A liver detoxification lifestyle is the one that involves reducing toxic pressure and at the same time enhancing immunity, rebuilding glutathione levels, methylation, and sulfur compounds.
It is usually said, "Bitter is good for the liver," which indicates that bitter herbs are good for your Liver and the body's detoxification process.
Implementing detoxification techniques such as Epsom salt baths, oil pulling, coffee enemas, intermittent fasting, dry brushing, and water flushing is incredibly beneficial for your Liver. These detoxification techniques should be implemented whenever possible, along with consuming healthy foods.