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NOURISHMENT – Transformation Stories

Start Loving Your Liver, and the Rest Will Follow

By Meagan McCrary

Want to sleep better, lose weight and/or have more energy? How about clearer skin and less bloating? Start by showing your liver some love.

A detoxifying powerhouse

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Most of us don’t even think about our liver unless it’s been brought to our attention, usually by a doctor, acupuncturist or health article. And while we seem to have a general sense of the importance of our liver, not many of us stop to consider how hard the vital organ works to keep us alive and thriving.

The liver is an incredible organ that works tirelessly behind the scenes to purify and filter out harmful substances, snatching toxins from the bloodstream and burying them deep within itself to protect the rest of the body. Ideally, the liver then neutralizes and detoxifies the toxins before they are removed through the various elimination channels. It also works hard to metabolize proteins and fats, providing the body with energy.

Your liver not only helps your body process the things you consume, but it also plays a critical role in keeping you well—allowing you to live out in the world where you encounter endless pathogens, chemicals and toxins without suffering the consequences. That is until the hardworking organ becomes weakened, sluggish and/or too fatty to do its job properly—and that’s when problems ensue.

A chronically overburdened liver

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According to Medical Medium and New York Times best-selling author Anthony William, a sluggish liver is at the root of just about every condition and symptom under the sun, including adrenal problems, autoimmune disorders, hormone issues, inflammation, diabetes, high blood sugar, irritable bowel syndrome, anxiety, depression, food sensitivities, migraines, headaches, sinus infections, brain fog and skin conditions like acne, eczema and psoriasis.

“The liver works hard, but it can only do so much in the face of a constant onslaught of pathogens and their byproduct, toxins, high-fat and high-protein foods (whether plant-based or animal-based), adrenaline and more, so over time, it can become mucky, stagnant, fatty and weak,” explains William, who offers a complete (and extensive!) list of what he calls “liver troublemakers” in his book “Liver Rescue: Answers to Eczema, Psoriasis, Diabetes, Strep, Acne, Gout, Bloating, Gallstones, Adrenal Stress, Fatigue, Fatty Liver, Weight Issues, SIBO & Autoimmune Disease” (Hay House Inc., 2018).

“When the liver is overburdened (and unable to perform its function properly), the entire toxic load of the body rises, causing more illness,” he says.

Some common liver troublemakers we encounter pretty much daily include household chemicals, chlorine, toxic heavy metals, chemical solvents, pharmaceuticals, stress hormones, and a variety of bacteria and viruses. On his blog, William explains that when our bodies are carrying a heavy toxic load and then we’re eating in ways that add even more of a burden, such as a high-fat diet, things start to really break down.

The good news is that our bodies can absolutely heal and recover when we give them the right support. “When you clean out those toxins and pathogens from the body and support your body with the nutrients it needs, you can turn around those health problems,” assures William, who has helped thousands (if not millions) of people recover their health worldwide.

3 reasons to start loving your liver

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foot-on-a-scaleFor weight loss. According to William, if you’re gaining weight, your liver’s sluggish. You can diet and exercise like crazy, but if you’re liver is bogged down, you’re fighting an uphill battle.

He explains that a strong liver is required to break down fat. Once overloaded, the liver can no longer produce the bile necessary to break down and process fat, which begins to accumulate more rapidly. The liver then becomes congested internally—forcing fat to build up on the outside, eventually resulting in a fatty liver.

“Fat cells then begin to accumulate in the intestinal tract, and eventually, the heart and arteries get saturated. Weight starts to cling on around the waist,” explains William, noting that a fatty liver is just one component of weight gain.

man-restingFor less bloating. Like everything gut related, bloating stems from an overburdened, sluggish or fatty liver, causing a slew of digestive issues.

A major reason is that when the liver is overloaded with toxins, heavy metals, bacteria and fat (as William points out on his site), pathogens can bleed from the liver into the intestines— coating the small intestine and colon—causing more bloating, among many digestive issues, as it hampers any good bacteria that are present and feeds bad bacteria and other unproductive microorganisms.

person-examining-skin-in-mirrorFor clearer skin. For those of us who suffer from more than the occasional clogged pore, William asserts that all skin conditions (including eczema, psoriasis and acne) that aren’t injuries stem from toxins and pathogens in the liver—not from the overproduction of naturally occurring oils in the body or a rise in hormone levels, as so many experts believe.

“The reason acne has a connection with various hormonal cycles—adolescence and menstruation, for instance—is that the immune system is strained during those times,” William explains. “The body is focusing its energy on other tasks, like growing, ovulating or menstruating. The lowered immunity gives pathogens the perfect opportunity to strike.”

3 ways to start loving your liver today

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Whatever your current health and fitness goals are, showing your liver a little love will help improve just about every aspect of your well-being. And while you may not see immediate results, you can trust that by supporting your liver, you’re taking the most crucial step toward a long, happy and healthy life. After all, it always begins with loving ourselves.

“Liver Rescue” is dedicated to showing you exactly how to support and love your liver for hundreds of symptoms and conditions. In the meantime, here are some immediate ways from the Medical Medium you can start giving back to your liver today:

  1. Increase your intake of powerful liver-supporting foods, such as apples, asparagus, apricots, arugula, bananas, berries, broccoli, kelp, tomatoes and fresh celery juice.
  2. Limit your intake of food-based troublemakers for your liver, such as dairy, eggs, vinegar, excessive salt and fatty foods.
  3. Support and detoxify your liver with herbs and supplements, such as nettle leaf, spirulina, zinc sulfate, licorice root and B12.

Video credit: Asier Romero, Shutterstock
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hoto credits: Aaron Amat, Shutterstock; gpointstudio, Thinkstock; Melissa Walker Horn, Unsplash; len4foto, Thinkstock; Rostislav_Sedlacek, Thinkstock; g-stockstudio, Thinkstock; Youngoldman, Thinkstock; margouillatphotos, Thinkstock

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Author

Meagan McCrary

Meagan McCrary is an experienced yoga teacher, freelance writer and author of "Pick Your Yoga Practice: Exploring and Understanding Different Styles of Yoga". She has been featured in Yoga Journal, Om Yoga Magazine, Mantra Yoga Magazine and Sweat Equity Magazine, and regularly contributes to YogaUonline.com. Highly knowledgeable in biomechanics and posture alignment, as well as restorative yoga practices, she has a passion for helping people find more ease, comfort and functionality in their bodies through a variety of modalities. Living and teaching in Southern California, Meagan teachers and works with a variety of clients specializing in yoga therapeutics, postural awareness, pain relief and prenatal yoga. You can also join her on one of her popular retreats.

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