Ladies, have you ever heard of the phrase "you are what you eat"? Well, in Chinese medicine, they believe that "you are what your liver is." That's right, despite western Medicine spending so much time on gut health, we have failed to pay respects to the most important organ in your body, the liver. If your liver is unhealthy, you could be in for a world of trouble, premature aging and disease. But don't worry, we've got you covered with tips on how to detox, heal your liver and reverse the aging process from within!
The liver stores many enzymes and hormones, including insulin, glucagon, and estrogen. When the liver is not functioning properly, it can affect the balance of these hormones in the body. For example, an unhealthy liver can lead to high levels of estrogen in the body, which can cause a range of symptoms including weight gain, mood swings, and irregular menstrual cycles. It can also feed oestrogen sensitive cancers, commonly found in breast cancer.
Additionally, the liver is responsible for metabolizing and eliminating excess hormones from the body. When the liver is not functioning properly, it can lead to a buildup of hormones in the body, which can also lead to hormonal imbalances, which lead to a long list of physical and mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression.
So, what are the symptoms of an unhealthy liver, you ask? Well, they include fatigue, weight gain, bloating, acne, anger, moodiness, thinning hair, psoriasis and even bad breath.
Now, you might be wondering how to detox and heal your liver. Well, it's actually pretty simple. First and foremost, you need to eat healthy. That means cutting out processed foods, gluten, dairy, sugar, and alcohol. I know, I know, shoot the messenger… but keep in mind there must be short term pain for long term gain, so once you’re fighting fit again you can try to enjoy these vices in moderation.
Next up, you should try incorporating liver-friendly foods into your diet. Foods like leafy greens, beets, garlic, fermented foods, lemon and parsley are all great for your liver.
And if you're feeling adventurous, Herbs and supplements that are good for the liver include medicinal mushrooms, milk thistle, dandelion root, turmeric, and artichoke extract. These herbs have been shown to improve liver function and protect against liver damage.
MEDICINAL MUSHROOMS ESSENTIAL FOR LIVER REPAIR
There is actually a whole host of scientific evidence to suggest that certain medicinal mushrooms, including Reishi, Chaga, Lion's Mane, and Cordyceps, may have liver-protective properties. However, the mechanisms by which these mushrooms exert their effects on the liver are not fully understood and more research is needed.
Here are some of the findings from peer-reviewed studies on these medicinal mushrooms and their potential effects on the liver:
Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum): Reishi mushrooms have been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which may help to protect the liver from damage caused by toxins or inflammation. One study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food found that a water extract of Reishi mushrooms was able to reduce liver damage in rats exposed to a toxic chemical. Another study published in Food and Function found that a polysaccharide extract from Reishi mushrooms was able to protect liver cells from damage caused by oxidative stress.
Chaga (Inonotus obliquus): Chaga mushrooms have been shown to have antioxidant properties, which may help to protect the liver from damage caused by free radicals. One study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that a water extract of Chaga mushrooms was able to protect the liver in rats exposed to a toxic chemical.
Lion's Mane (Hericium erinaceus): Lion's Mane mushrooms have been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which may help to protect the liver from damage i caused by inflammation or oxidative stress. One study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that an extract of Lion's Mane mushrooms was able to protect liver cells from damage caused by a toxic chemical.
Cordyceps (Cordyceps sinensis): Cordyceps mushrooms have been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which may help to protect the liver from damage caused by inflammation or oxidative stress. One study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that a water extract of Cordyceps mushrooms was able to protect the liver in rats exposed to a toxic chemical.
Bee pollen is not a medicinal mushroom, but it has also been studied for its potential effects on liver health. One study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that bee pollen was able to protect liver cells from damage caused by oxidative stress.
WHAT COMPOUNDS ARE AFFECTING THE LIVER?
Medicinal mushrooms and bee pollen contain various antioxidants, compounds, and nutrients that are believed to support liver health. Here are some examples:
Antioxidants: Medicinal mushrooms and bee pollen contain various antioxidants, such as polysaccharides, triterpenoids, and flavonoids. These antioxidants are believed to help protect the liver from oxidative stress and inflammation, which can contribute to liver damage. For example, Reishi mushrooms contain polysaccharides and triterpenoids that have been shown to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects on the liver.
Beta-glucans: Beta-glucans are a type of polysaccharide found in medicinal mushrooms like Reishi, Chaga, and Cordyceps. Beta-glucans are believed to help stimulate the immune system, which can aid in the removal of toxins from the liver.
Ergothioneine: Ergothioneine is an antioxidant found in some mushrooms, including Lion's Mane. Ergothioneine has been shown to have protective effects on the liver and may help to reduce liver damage caused by oxidative stress.
Essential nutrients: Medicinal mushrooms and bee pollen are also rich in essential nutrients that support overall health and may benefit liver function. For example, Cordyceps mushrooms are a good source of amino acids, which are essential for liver detoxification. Bee pollen is rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can support liver health and overall well-being.
MORE ALTERNATIVE THERAPIES
Some more natural therapies that scientific literature has proven supports the detoxification and health of the lover are;
1. Infra red saunas and ice baths can also be beneficial for the liver. Infra red saunas help to increase blood flow and stimulate the lymphatic system, which can help to remove toxins from the liver.
2. Ice baths, on the other hand, can help to reduce inflammation in the liver, which is important for maintaining healthy liver function.
3. Last but not least, make sure you're getting enough exercise. Exercise helps your body sweat out toxins and keeps your liver functioning properly. Plus, it's a great excuse to wear those cute new workout clothes you've been eyeing.
In conclusion, your liver is a pretty big deal. So, take care of it, and it'll take care of you. And if you need some extra motivation, just remember: a healthy liver means you'll have more energy to live your best life, chase your dreams or simply engage with your kids and loved ones without feeling exhausted and disconnected.