6 foods that protect the liver
Foods for your liver are essential to keeping your body’s powerhouse—your liver—functioning optimally. A healthy liver plays a key role in relieving digestive issues, such as a sluggish metabolism, gas, bloating, and constipation.
It regulates blood sugar levels, which—when out of balance—can cause sugar cravings, fatigue, and fuzzy thinking.
A toxic liver can lead to inflammatory diseases, such as diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, and autoimmune diseases. Without a healthy liver, you may suffer from hormonal imbalances that can cause headaches, mood swings, and depression.
It’s time to nurture this amazing organ!
Here are 5 natural foods that enhance liver function in addition to improving liver health.
Crucifers contain vital phytonutrients—flavonoids, carotenoids, sulforaphane, and indoles—to help your liver neutralize chemicals, pesticides, drugs, and carcinogens, and they’re also some of the best foods to fight spring allergies.
Crucifer foods include broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, bok choy, and daikon, a root rich in phenolic compounds that could prevent the formation of carcinogen in your stomach in response to foods made with hydrogenated oils and sodium nitrite.
2. Garlic (lasoon)
Loaded with a wide range of healthy nutrients, garlic acts a perfect natural food to improve liver function and protect against various diseases. A single clove of garlic has the ability to activate enzymes which play a key role in flushing out toxins responsible for liver damage. It contains high amounts of two natural compounds namely selenium and allicin that helps in its liver cleansing process.
3. Dark Leafy Greens
Kale, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage are powerful brassica vegetables that contain high levels of sulfur, which supports your liver in its detoxification process, triggering it to remove free radicals and other toxic chemicals.
Dandelion is another dark leafy green known as one of the most effective and recommended plants to support liver detoxification. One of it’s chemical components, taraxacin, is believed to stimulate the digestive organs and trigger the liver and gallbladder to release bile, which supports digestion and fat absorption.
Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and cranberries are among nature’s superfoods because they contain phytochemicals—antioxidant-rich plant compounds that help your liver protect your body from free radicals and oxidative stress, which have been linked to chronic diseases and aging. Anthocyanin and polyphenols found in berries have been shown to inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells in the liver.
5. Turmeric (haldi)
Used as a natural food colour, turmeric is loaded with myriad healthy nutrients that help in keeping the liver healthy. Add a pinch of turmeric to a curry, soup or dal to enhance the taste of the dish and improve the detoxifying ability of the liver. In addition to removing the dietary carcinogens from the body, turmeric also helps in stimulating bile production.
In general, fish is healthy and protein-rich. Some wild-caught fish, such as Atlantic mackerel from Canada, sardines, and anchovies, are notable for their omega-3 fatty acids and their low level of contaminants. Wild salmon, an excellent source of protein, is also one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids from the krill and shrimp they eat—that’s what gives salmon their beautiful color and makes them rich in antioxidants.