14 Foods that Cleanse the Liver
Modern society has created a sad state for our over-processed livers. Anytime we overeat or eat processed or fried foods, and, anytime we are exposed to environmental pollutants or stress, the liver becomes overworked and overloaded.
When the liver is taxed, it can’t process toxins and fat in an efficient way. There are many foods that can help cleanse the liver naturally by stimulating the natural ability to clean toxic waste from the body.
Just a small amount of this pungent white bulb has the ability to activate liver enzymes that helps your body flush out toxins. Garlic also holds high amounts of allicin and selenium, two natural compounds that aid in liver cleansing.
High in both vitamin C and antioxidants, grapefruit increase the natural cleansing processes of the liver. A small glass of freshly squeezed grapefruit juice will help boost production of liver detoxification enzymes that help flush out carcinogens and other toxins.
3. Beets and Carrots
Both extremely high in plant-flavonoids and beta-carotene, eating both beets and carrots can help stimulate and improve overall liver function.
4. Green Tea
This liver-loving beverage is chock-full of plant antioxidants known as catechins, a constituent known to assist the livers overall functions. Green tea is not only delicious, it’s also a great way to improve your overall diet. Learn more about the benefits of green tea.
5. Leafy Green Vegetables
One of our most powerful allies in cleansing the liver, leafy greens can be eaten raw, cooked or juiced. Extremely high in plant chlorophylls, greens literally suck up environmental toxins from the blood stream. With their distinct ability to nuetralize heavy metals, chemicals and pesticides, these cleansing foods offer a powerful protective mechanism for the liver.
Try incorporating leafy greens such as bitter gourd, arugula, dandelion greens, spinach, mustard greens and chicory into your diet. This will help increase the creation and flow of bile, the substance that removes waste from the organs and blood.
This nutrient-dense super-food helps the body produce glutathione, which is necessary for the liver to cleanse harmful toxins. Recent studies indicate improved liver health when avocados are eaten regularly.
High in pectin, apples hold the chemical constituents needed for the body to cleanse and release toxins from the digestive tract. This, in turn, makes it easier for the liver to handle the toxic load during the cleansing process.
8. Olive Oil
Cold-pressed organic oils such as olive, hemp and flaxseed are great for the liver, when used in moderation. They help the body by providing a lipid base that can suck up harmful toxins in the body. In this way, it takes some of the burden off the liver in terms of the toxic overload that many of us suffer from.
9. Whole Grains
Grains, such as brown rice, are rich in B-complex vitamins, nutrients known to improve overall fat metabolization, liver function and liver decongestion. If possible, do not eat foods with white flour, instead try eating whole wheat alternatives.
10. Cruciferous Vegetables
Eating broccoli and cauliflower will increase the amount of glucosinolate in your system, adding to enzyme production in the liver. These natural enzymes help flush out carcinogens, and other toxins, out of our body, which significantly lowers our risk of cancer.
11. Lemons & Limes
These citrus fruits contain very high amounts of the vitamin C, which aids the body in synthesizing toxic material into substance that can be absorbed by water. Drinking freshly-squeezed lemon or lime juice in the morning helps stimulate the liver.
Holding high amount of the amino acid arginine, walnuts aid the liver in detoxifying ammonia. Walnuts are also high in glutathione and omega-3 fatty acids, which support normal liver cleansing actions. Make sure you chew the nuts well (until they are liquefied) before swallowing.
Much like broccoli and cauliflower, eating cabbage helps stimulate the activation of two crucial liver detoxifying enzymes that help flush out toxins. Try eating more kimchi, coleslaw, cabbage soup and sauerkraut.
The liver’s favorite spice. Try adding some of this detoxifying goodness into your next lentil stew or veggie dish for an instant liver pick-me-up. Turmeric helps boost liver detox, by assisting enzymes that actively flush out known dietary carcinogens.
Tips For Doing a Liver Cleanse
Other liver-cleanse foods not listed above are artichoke, asparagus, kale and brussel sprouts.
Eating the foods listed above is a great way to keep your liver functioning properly. However, for the best results, I would recommend doing a liver cleanse at least twice a year to eliminate any foreign substances that may be trapped in your liver.
About the author
Dr. Edward F. Group III has his Naturopathic Doctorate, Clinical Herbalist, Holistic Health Practitioner, Clinical Nutritionist certifications, and is a Diplomate of the American Clinical Board of Nutrition and the American Board of Functional Medicine. He founded Global Healing Center Inc. in 1998 which has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.
A dynamic author and speaker, Dr. Group focuses solely on spreading the message of health and wellness to the global community with the philosophy of full body cleansing, most importantly colon cleansing, consuming pure clean organic food, water, air, exercise and nutritional supplementation. Visit GlobalHealingCenter.com to learn more about living green and healthy!