You're dieting, exercising, eating fruit and salads and you're still gaining weight. You're at your wits end and blame it on your age, your genes, your metabolism, your luck. The problem may be your liver.
Your liver is the largest organ in your body. As such, it is one of the most used and essential body parts. Your liver is vital in the process of digesting nutrients, as well as providing vitamins, nutrients and helping in the excretion of waste. Additionally, the liver metabolizes and breaks down the products of digestion and detoxifies materials that are harmful in the body, such as ammonia and alcohol. It is a storage house of Vitamin B12, iron and copper. You couldn't live without your liver.
The liver is also responsible for making cholesterol and other fats that are needed by the body. It produces immune factors to fight infection, regulates hormones, blood clotting and also produces bile.
When it comes to metabolism your amazing liver is an essential metabolic organ. You may be asking yourself how the liver does all this miraculous work? The answer is surprising: glucose. That's right -- your liver needs lots of sugar for it's metabolic work. As an insulin-regulated organ, the liver's behavior changes depending on the level of insulin in the body and its sensitivity to that insulin. The type of sugar the liver needs is not refined however, it is natural sugars provided in fruits and vegetables. To illustrate, when levels of glucose (and consequently insulin) are high in the blood, the liver responds to the insulin by absorbing the glucose.and bundling the sugar into granules called glycogen, filling up the liver cells, so the liver becomes a storehouse for excess glucose to be released to maintain the smooth function of the adrenals and the pancreas during times when you're not eating. Conversely, any abnormal metabolism of glucose in the liver promotes insulin resistance, diabetes, and nonalcoholic fatty liver diseases and this can cause you to hang on to weight.
We don't gain weight because we're getting old. We don't develop Type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure or heart disease because of age either. We develop these diseases because the liver, over time has become unable to do it's filtering work. This is a diet related issue. When this filtering process becomes sluggish or blocked, symptoms of hypertension, high cholesterol, Type 2 diabetes and heart disease appear.
The liver is the number one fat burning organ in the body and when you can't seem to lose weight no matter what you do, you liver relies on your to help it get working again. The very good news is the liver is regenerative. This is in large part due to the fact that the liver has an immune system of its own. This means, major diseases can be thwarted by taking special care of it.
You likely have a sluggish liver if:
- You are obese
- Eat a diet high in protein and fat (animal products)
- Eat fast and processed foods
- Drink Alcohol excessively
Three easy ways to begin gently healing the liver include:
- Drinking lemon water daily upon waking.
- Lowering animal protein in the diet.
- Lowering fat in the diet.
- Drinking dandelion root tea with a teaspoon of raw organic honey, especially before bed.
- Green vegetable juicing.
- Carefully targeted natural supplementation.
A sluggish liver can affect anyone at any age. Generally, healing a sluggish liver completely may take anywhere from one month to one year depending on severity, but the effort is well worth the health benefit and the weight loss if this is needed. If you feel you're a candidate for a sluggish liver, and want to reverse it, consult with a holistic nutritional practitioner or naturopath to begin making diet and lifestyle changes immediately.