Love your liver by Carmen Potgieter

Have you ever thought of sending your liver some love? In this article raw food lover Carmen Potgieter, looks at healthy lifestyle guidelines that care for your liver.
When looking at the vitally important roles the liver plays ' we see how important a healthy liver is. Just like every house needs a good spring clean from time to time ' the liver is the most important 'room' in the body to give a good sweep out. It's said that in the body, symbolically, the heart represents the mother and the liver the father. Resolve to keep the 'father' of your house functioning at maximum capacity. Some of the main functions of the liver are:
  1. The liver stores and releases glucose as the body needs it.
  2. It stores iron that has been processed from hemoglobin.
  3. The liver clears the blood from drugs and harmful substances. It's where all medication is metabolized.
  4. It produces bile that helps break down fat in the small intestines during digestion.
  5. Importantly, the liver changes certain chemicals into more useable forms like harmful ammonia to urea and silica to nutritional calcium.
Not only do toxins get processed in the liver ' but emotions too, especially those like anger. This explains why its fairly common for individuals to experience a flair up of emotions a few days into an intense detox. Taking time out for meditation and breathing techniques are a vital part of dealing with emotional build up. It is helpful to include products like MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) and chlorella to a detox programme. Both of them have toxin neutralising properties that bond with toxins (especially heavy metals) and make it easier for toxins to leave the body. The easiest way to give your liver a rest is to have certain days in the week where you have no alcohol or caffiene. Animal protein also provides quite a lot of work for the liver. You might decide to join in on the Meat Free Monday movement and turn it into a fun activity where family members take turns to make veggie dishes. Doing a 21 day detox once or twice a year is a beneficial practice and great habit to get into. You may want to try a few days of only drinking a detox juice. You would need to consult a health practitioner though, if you are going the fasting route. Although a juice fast might sound intense, nutrients are delivered in a perfect bio-availabe form directly to the cells. When the body has ample nutrients it stops sending out hunger pangs and cravings. Juicing is an excellent way to give your liver a break; to flush out toxins; and allow it to operate at maximum capacity. Your liver detox need not be for 21days if this seems too much of a challenge. You could start with 7 days or even 3 days or you could even just swap your morning breakfast for a green juice. Just one step in the right direction will bring you benefits. Remember ' the body is continuously healing itself and any help you provide will be rewarded. Having a healthy, fully functional body is the best high a person can ever experience Guidelines for a safe detox: Cleaning the liver is a great goal for a detoxification programme. It should be a gentle process and shouldn't add strain to an exhausted liver. START WITH A CLEANSING JUICE Start the first few days with a juice fast of fresh organic apple, cucumber and lemon juice. Cucumber provides a cooling aspect to hot emotional livers. It's important to note that with a masticating juicer like the Oscar, your juice will keep it's nutritional value for a full day in the fridge. A blade or centrifugal juicer only stays protected from oxidation for up to 45 minutes. REMOVE SALT & SUGAR Remove all salt and sugar from your diet. It's possible that blood pressure might increase during the first part of the detox as toxins move from the lymph into the bloodstream ready to be excreted from the body. If you feel like something sweet, have a little honey with Dandelion tea - great for detoxing the liver. CHANGE ANIMAL PROTEIN TO PLANT PROTEIN During this time swap animal protein for high quality plant protein, like hemp seeds, chia and goji berries ' all complete protein sources with a high profile of amino acids. Add the superfood Maca (not a complete protein, it has 17 of the 18 essential amino acids) and you have a benificial hormone component. CUT ALCOHOL & CAFFEINE Remove all alcohol and caffeine. Drink 2 litres of good quality spring water daily to facilitate detoxification. DID YOU KNOW? The liver has a remarkable capacity to regenerate. Even after surgical removal or chemical injury, only 25% of the original liver mass is needed to regenerate back to its full size. TRY THIS Use specific products to help your liver rejuvenate
  • Goji berries are a tonic adaptogen, and will enhance the livers' ability to detox.
  • Aloe Vera activates glutathione production by the liver, a crutial antioxidant in the production of white blood cells.
  • Milk Thistle is known for it's restorative nature for liver damaged by alcohol and drug abuse.
Carmen Potgieter has launched a new blog called Raw Love with wonderful ideas and tips on healthy raw eating.

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