Boost Your Liver Health


Better Nutrition - - CONTENTS - by Kim Erick­son

Give this hard- work­ing or­gan some love with our top 5 cleans­ing sup­ple­ments and 10 liver- sup­port­ing foods.

The liver. It’s not some­thing that most of us rou­tinely think about. But the liver is the largest in­ter­nal or­gan in the body. Its best- known role is that of garbage col­lec­tor— in a world fi lled with tox­ins, it’s the liver’s job to break down the con­tam­i­nants that come our way and get them ready to be es­corted from the body. Ideally, the liver could process all of the tox­ins we en­counter, but due to the sheer vol­ume of in­dus­trial chem­i­cals and pol­lu­tants that we are ex­posed to to­day, the liver’s nat­u­ral abil­ity to detox­ify can have trou­ble keep­ing up. The fol­low­ing herbs and nu­tri­ents can not only help op­ti­mize over­all liver func­tion, but also specifi cally sup­port the or­gan’s detox­ifi cation mech­a­nisms.

AMLA FRUIT EX­TRACT is one of the most im­por­tant foods in Ayurvedic medicine, largely be­cause of its an­tiox­i­dant and anti- infl am­ma­tory prop­er­ties. Sci­en­tifi c stud­ies show that amla eff ec­tively pre­vents the toxic eff ects of many in­dus­trial chem­i­cals, heavy met­als, and phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal drugs. Amla is also one of the rich­est nat­u­ral sources of vi­ta­min C. Editor’s Prod­uct Pick: Vi­brant Health Su­per Nat­u­ral C

L- GLU­TATHIONE is the most pow­er­ful an­tiox­i­dant made by the body, and the high­est lev­els are found in the liver. Of­ten called “The Mas­ter An­tiox­i­dant,” glu­tathione is made up of three amino acids— cys­teine, glycine, and glu­tamine. Along with quench­ing free rad­i­cals in the liver, glu­tathione plays a crit­i­cal role in Phase II detox­ifi cation, a key part of the body’s two- step detox­ifi cation process. Editor’s Prod­uct Pick: NOW Foods Liver Re­fresh

MILK THIS­TLE EX­TRACT is per­haps the best- known herb for liver sup­port. Milk this­tle’s most ac­tive com­pound is sily­marin, a polyphe­nol with pow­er­ful an­tiox­i­dant ac­tiv­ity that scav­enges dam­ag­ing free rad­i­cals. What’s more, milk this­tle boosts the ac­tiv­ity of the body’s own an­tiox­i­dants such as glu­tathione. Stud­ies sug­gest that milk this­tle also in­hibits infl am­ma­tion, stim­u­lates new

liver cell pro­duc­tion, and pre­vents glu­tathione de­ple­tion. Ar­ti­choke, which is re­lated to the milk this­tle plant, is an­other liver- pro­tec­tive herb. Editor’s Prod­uct Pick: Enzymed­ica Pu­rify Liver Detox

BUR­DOCK ROOT is an­other liv­er­specifi c herb. Rich in iron, cal­cium, and vi­ta­min C, bur­dock stim­u­lates bile fl ow and pro­tects and tonifi es the liver. A study in the Amer­i­can Jour­nal of Chi­nese Medicine found that bur­dock de­fends against the toxic eff ects of ac­etaminophen and the in­dus­trial car­bon tetra­chlo­ride. Tai­wanese re­searchers found that bur­dock root also helps guard the liver from chronic al­co­hol con­sump­tion. Editor’s Prod­uct Pick: Gaia Herbs Liver Cleanse

CHLORELLA is a sin­gle- celled, fresh­wa­ter alga that has sur­vived on the earth for more than 2 bil­lion years. The se­cret to its longevity is chlorella’s fi brous outer wall. Hidden within that wall— which is in­di­gestible to hu­mans— are pow­er­ful detox­ifi cation prop­er­ties. For­tu­nately, sci­en­tists have found that break­ing the wall re­leases chlorella’s nat­u­ral abil­ity to bind tox­ins and heavy met­als through a process known as chela­tion. Chlorella also boasts a wealth of nu­tri­ents, in­clud­ing B vi­ta­mins, vi­ta­mins C and K, min­er­als, es­sen­tial fatty acids, and fi ber. Editor’s Prod­uct Pick: No­vaForme Cy­toGreens for Ath­letes, Choco­late

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