What is the most important organ in the human body? Heart, brain, stomach? No, it’s the liver. It helps us to endure all the consequences of loud parties, overeating and prolonged illness. How to help the liver “punch”? Read our material!
The main function of the liver is the elimination of toxins from the body, it serves as a natural filter in the human body. The liver disinfects drugs, poisons, alcohol and other substances with which we poison ourselves. In the process of processing toxins, the liver itself destroys itself but is quickly restored through regeneration.
The liver is a fairly “strong” organ, but if it is abused by harmful foods, alcohol and drugs, it can not cope. One of the most common liver diseases is cirrhosis. This is a very dangerous violation when the liver cannot eliminate toxins, and they begin to actively destroy the body from the inside. Cirrhosis in particularly advanced cases can be fatal. We made a selection of simple rules for the prevention of liver diseases, which are quite easy to follow, but you will feel the benefits of them very soon.
Pay attention to the signs and symptoms
Unexplained fatigue may indicate liver problems, like dark urine. Yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes may be caused by jaundice. Abdominal distention, in which fluid builds up in the abdomen or legs, may be a sign of heart failure, or results from liver disease. If you have these or other suspicious symptoms, it is important to consult a doctor.
Pass required examinations and complete test
If you have symptoms of liver disease, then a doctor may order specialized tests:
- A liver function test is a blood test that tests the levels of liver protein and enzymes and identifies the possible presence of any disease. They can prescribe ALT (alanine transaminase), AST (aspartate transaminase), ALP (alkaline phosphatase) and GGT (gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase) tests.
- A bilirubin test checks for the presence of this orange-yellow fluid that may leak from your liver if it is damaged.
- A liver biopsy can check for the presence of both cancer and infection.
Don’t overuse medications, over the counter
Too much acetaminophen, for example, can cause acute liver failure, so ask your doctor how much is safe for you. Acetaminophen is often found in allergy and cold medications – sometimes they are listed as “APAP” or “acetam”, so check the composition to make sure that you do not double the amount of medication if you take several drugs.
Scientists from the University of California at San Diego also found that proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), often taken to reduce acid reflux, can increase the amount of intestinal bacteria Enterococcus. These bacteria can cause inflammation, which has the ability to lead to chronic liver disease, so if it bothers you, talk to your doctor about whether it is possible to stop taking an IPP or reduce the dose.
Ideally, your food should be fresh, not processed and packaged. Processed foods that contain sugar and saturated fats can increase the risk of developing diabetes, which negatively affects liver function.
You probably know that it is important for liver health to limit alcohol intake. The good news is that coffee can be left in the diet because it has a protective effect. A study conducted at the Erasmus University Medical Center in Rotterdam (Netherlands) found that three cups of coffee a day could potentially prevent liver obesity and stop the progression of the disease, probably due to antioxidants.
Keep an active lifestyle
Studies show that both aerobic and weight exercises improve insulin resistance and help the oxidation of fatty acids in your body, which is a powerful way to combat fatty liver disease. Go, run, do Pilates – no matter what you choose, keep doing this 30 minutes five times a week.
The most important thing in maintaining the health not only of the liver but of the whole organism is moderation. If you are able to control your appetites in food, alcohol, entertainment, then the body will help you and maintain good health. And any ailments are a kind of response to a disrespectful attitude towards their own health. It is important to always remember this!