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Love Your Liver

There must be 50 ways to love your liver, but to truly love something you have to know what it is all about. Right?

Well, what impresses me most about the liver is not that it is the largest internal organ of the body, but that it performs over 5,000 functions. A small list includes balancing your cholesterol, storing vitamins, activating hormones, and metabolizing fat into glucose to give your body energy. It also acts as a filter to remove toxins (harmful substances) and waste products from the blood. Check this out - a healthy liver filters blood at a rate of about 1.5 quarts per minute. That's 540 gallons of blood a day and more than 13 million gallons over a lifetime! Wow.

The liver continues to function even with considerable damage, but that doesn't mean it is doing all of its jobs well. Signs of poor function include: tiredness, dark circles under the eyes, poor digestion and dull skin.

If your holiday season started out with a partying bang and lots of alcohol and fatty foods, you might want to do something nice for your largest organ. Want to know what foods help your liver out, then

  • Bitter food like broccoli, dandelion greens, cabbage and brussels sprouts have a cleansing effect on the liver.
  • In multiple studies, artichokes have been proven to promote liver health.
  • The spices turmeric, cinnamon and licorice are beneficial to the liver.

Of course it helps to avoid: saturated fats, refined sugar and alcohol (limit yourself to two drinks a day). Drinking plenty of water is always a good idea.

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Join The Conversation
justjaime27 justjaime27 9 years
Weird. The liver. Who would have thought? lol Sorry girlies...never paid much attention in science back in my school days...so I'm loving the learning experience here! Thanks for the post, fitsugar!
JK-Boogie JK-Boogie 9 years
I do a liver flush. I juice 2 grapefruits, 1 lemon, 200ml of water, crushed garlic, 2 tsp of extra virgin olive oil, crushed ginger. Blended then drank...very quickly I might add, then drink 2 cups of peppermint tea, and follow that by 2 litres of water in the day....your liver will be flushed and you will know this because you will spend a lot of time going back and forth to the toilet as you flush the toxins out of your body.
Jazsama Jazsama 9 years
THX fitsugar. FYI, my liver regenerated to full size in two weeks. The organ is just fascinating!
Ophelia0311 Ophelia0311 9 years
Thanks for the tips! I recently recovered from Hepatitis A, which proved a disaster on my liver. I'm better now, but it'd be great to show it some love. A friend recommended Milk Thistle- an herb that is supposed to aid in keeping the liver in top shape. Anyone know if it's good or not?
Fitness Fitness 9 years
Cool the way things come around full circle with a post on the liver. You are a great and giving daughter and I hope your dad is recovering well too. How amazing is it that you can donate part of your liver and still have a functioning liver left?
Jazsama Jazsama 9 years
Hey! I discovered this awesome site while I was laid up from a liver transplant surgery. 5 weeks ago I donated half my liver to my Dad who has healthy habits but got a rare liver disease. He is doing great by the way. Donate life, yall. Painful, but totally worth it. I went back to work last week.
Fitness Fitness 9 years
You ladies are awesome in your body knowledge. The liver is the largest INTERNAL organ. I love that you all know that about the skin being the largest organ - you keep me on my toes. Stone_Soup held a liver at BodyWorlds...how cool is that! And cams - I think the "understated" professor quote sums it up. Here's to the liver and I am toasting with water.
cams cams 9 years
This skin is the largest organ, but the liver is the coolest! We learne everything it does in biochemistry. . .in the words of my prof: "In general, liver failure is not a good thing" Liver and kidneys are the two organs I would NOT want to stop working.
stone_soup stone_soup 9 years
Skin IS the largest organ in the body. I've held a liver before. At BodyWorlds! It's huge! But a vital organ for survival. It is multi-functional. ____________________________________ Don't tick me off. Or you'll get it.
rubialala rubialala 9 years
Purplesugar, I always thought that skin was the largest organ...maybe they mean inside the body. Anyway, artichokes, huh? It's about time something that I like to eat is actually healthy for me!
scratch5 scratch5 9 years
I am making pizza for dinner tonight and I am going to add some artichoke hearts to the list of toppings. I had a little too much sangria last night.
purplesugar purplesugar 9 years
I always heard that skin was the largest organ. Were 'they' lying to me? regardless, over 500 functions - wow! that's got to be an important organ to take care of.
yayita yayita 9 years
The liver is the shizz! it is a kick ass organ. My BF's uncle had a liver transplant this year. It was sad that he was sick but at the same time I didnt agree that he got the organ.. my BF would kill me if he read this!! He abused it by drinking for years and years, he gets sick and in less than 6 months they give him a liver.. the old drunk.
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