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Ways to Flush Your Liver of Toxins

Here’s how to keep your liver happy.

How healthy is your liver? According to the CDC, 4.5 million adults in the US are living with liver damage. Thankfully, small lifestyle changes can make a huge difference in liver health. "It's one of the only organs that can regenerate itself," says liver specialist Christina Lindenmeyer, MD. "If you have an infection or an injury to your liver, it's possible that if you live a healthy lifestyle and eat the right foods, your liver may be able to heal itself." Here are five ways to support liver health, according to doctors. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.


Be Mindful of Alcohol

different cocktails

Limiting—or completely eliminating—alcohol can have a significant impact on liver health. "Almost all heavy drinkers develop fatty liver, which is the earliest stage of alcohol-related liver disease," says Omar Mousa, MBBS. "Most people with fatty liver don't have symptoms, although they can have an enlarged liver or mild discomfort in the upper right side of the abdomen. This is a preventable disease, and it's reversible if treated early. The best treatment is for the patient to stop drinking."


Be Wary Of Supplements

vitamin supplements

"Make sure that none of your medications, herbs, and supplements are toxic to the liver; you can crosscheck your list with this LiverTox Even acetaminophen (the generic ingredient in Tylenol and some cold medicines) may be harmful if you take too much for too long, especially if you have liver disease or drink alcohol heavily," says Wynne Armand, MD.


Maintain a Healthy BMI

Female leg stepping on floor scales

Being overweight or obese is strongly linked to liver disease—so try to maintain a healthy weight to support liver health. "Patients who have hypertension (high blood pressure), have high cholesterol, are overweight or obese, and have diabetes or insulin resistance are at greater risk to develop fatty liver disease," says Johns Hopkins Medicine. "Physicians and scientists do not fully understand why the excess fat causes these liver changes. They do know that by losing weight, liver enzymes may normalize and liver inflammation may improve.. Studies show that losing 10 percent of your weight causes the liver enzymes to improve, which correlates with a reduction in the liver inflammation caused by the extra fat."


Eat Potassium-Rich Foods


"Some studies found that low potassium levels increase metabolic disorders, including fatty liver and type 2 diabetes," says Amy Myers, MD. "Optimal amounts of potassium are 4,700 mg daily, and I'd be willing to bet you aren't getting that much in your diet. There are a lot of health benefits of potassium, including lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, supporting heart health, and promoting optimal liver function."


Drink Coffee and Work Out

large coffee

"Some studies showed that patients with NAFLD who drank coffee (about two cups every day) had a decreased risk in fibrosis,' says Dr. Armand. "However, take into consideration the downsides of regular caffeine intake. It appears that aerobic exercise also leads to decreased fat in the liver, and with vigorous intensity, possibly also decreased inflammation independent of weight loss."

Ferozan Mast
Ferozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer with a passion for making science and research-backed information accessible to a general audience. Read more about Ferozan
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