Your liver works hard to keep your body healthy and free from toxins. Support it by reading our latest blog post to discover which herbs are best for your liver.
One of the body’s most essential organs, your liver does many things to keep you healthy and well. As well as breaking down food to make energy and removing potentially damaging toxins from your blood, the liver plays a vital role in your immune system, detecting and destroying bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens.
Your liver also helps to maintain hormone balance, producing many hormones and breaking down others when they are no longer needed.
Plus, this amazing organ regulates the levels of sugar, fats, cholesterol, and amino acids in your blood.
With all that it does to keep us healthy, it’s especially important to take care of your liver and support it in functioning effectively.
Fortunately, the liver is also unique in being the only visceral organ that can regenerate, healing itself from damage and growing new cells.
However, this doesn’t mean that we should ignore our liver health. Keeping this essential organ working well is vital so that it can continue to carry out its many tasks.
You can support your liver by living a healthy lifestyle, which includes:
- Avoiding over-consumption of alcohol
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Exercising regularly
- Reducing the risk of contracting hepatitis by practising safe sex, not sharing needles, and avoiding blood-to-blood contact with other people
There are also certain herbs that support our liver health and help to keep it functioning effectively. In this blog post, we’ll explore some of these herbs and their benefits for our livers.
1. Milk Thistle
The best-known herb for liver support is milk thistle. It’s been used to treat liver disease for centuries and is also a popular natural hangover cure.
This herb contains an active compound called silymarin, which is an antioxidant and has anti-inflammatory properties. The silymarin in milk thistle helps to protect our livers against damage.
Warming ginger is another great herb for your liver. Like milk thistle, it contains anti-inflammatory compounds that help to protect against liver damage from toxins like alcohol.
Ginger also helps to reduce levels of fat accumulation in the liver, which in turn decreases your risk of developing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
Turmeric has become hugely popular in the past decade for its powerful anti-inflammatory properties. These have many benefits for our health, including protecting our livers against damage.
The curcumin in turmeric acts as an antioxidant, reducing oxidative stress and helping to avoid fat accumulation in our livers.
4. Liquorice or licorice
You may associate liquorice more with sweets than herbal remedies, but the root of the liquorice plant is packed full of benefits for our health.
Liquorice contains glycyrrhizin, a compound that has antiviral and antioxidative properties. This makes liquorice a great herb for supporting your liver health – it has been used in traditional herbal medicine to treat liver disease for hundreds of years.
5. Dandelion Root
The humble dandelion has many surprising benefits, including giving our livers a helping hand. It supports the production of bile, which is made by the liver to help with digestion and carry away waste.
Dandelion root also contains polysaccharides that act as antioxidants. By reducing inflammation in the liver, these polysaccharides help to protect our livers against damage from toxins such as alcohol.
How to Incorporate Liver-Protective Herbs into Your Diet
While you might reasonably use ginger and turmeric in cooking, especially if you like spicy food, most of us will find it more difficult to incorporate herbs like dandelion root and milk thistle into our daily meals.
As a result, most people access the liver-protecting benefits of these herbs in other ways. As interest in herbal medicine is growing, you can increasingly find herbal remedies available as powders, capsules, and tinctures.
However, our favourite way to get more of these wonderful herbs into our diets is by making them into a simple cup of herbal tea.
Not only is this one of the most accessible ways to enjoy herbs, but making tea is also a delicious and comforting ritual that gives us all a much-needed moment of peace and calm in our hectic days.
When it comes to supporting your liver health, we have two particular herbal tea blends to recommend. Both come from our premium range and include many of the ingredients on this list.
First, NutraLiver is a tasty tea that draws on the anti-inflammatory powers of milk thistle, Liquorice or licorice root, and turmeric. It also contains peppermint and fennel to support your overall digestive system (and give the tea a lovely fresh but sweet taste).
Second, our NutraCleanse blend is designed to support your liver and kidneys in removing toxins from your body. As well as milk thistle and liquorice, it contains ginger, dandelion root, and other herbs that help to protect these vital organs.