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Liver detox in 5 easy steps

One of the main ways in which our body rids itself of toxins is through the liver. The liver is one of the hardest working organs in our body and it works tirelessly to filter our blood from toxins, produce bile (required to digest fat), break down hormones and store essential vitamins, mineral and iron.  When the liver is not working optimally, we are not able to digest food in general and fat in particular.


Some of the essential functions of the liver are:

  1. Processing nutrients absorbed by the intestines so they are better absorbed.

  2. Regulating blood composition to balance protein, fat and sugar.

  3. Destroying old and redundant red blood cells

  4. Producing essential chemicals which help blood clot properly.

  5. Breaking down and metabolising of alcohol and drugs (prescription as well as recreational).

  6. Producing essential proteins and cholesterol.

  7. Removing toxins from the blood stream including bilirubin, ammonia and others.

  8. Storing of minerals, iron and Vitamin A.


More often than not, when people think of liver disease, they mostly think of alcohol-induced cirrhosis, which is a serious condition, but not only caused by alcohol. In fact, there are a number of factors that can lead to cirrhosis of the liver and liver damage including eating uncooked shellfish, some medications (including acetaminophen), chronic malnutrition, eating poisonous wild mushrooms, and exposure to chemicals.  You get cirrhosis when scar tissue replaces the healthy cells in the liver. As the scar tissue continues to grow, the liver’s ability to function is reduced. Liver failure is the next physiological step and happens when the scar tissue has created so much damage, it’s no longer functioning.

Liver detox effectively removes toxins


Our homes, places of work and food supply are all full with environmental toxins.  These all contribute to the impairment of our liver function, and is associated with:

  1. Low potassium levels. 

  2. Heavy alcohol abuse.

  3. Intravenous drug use.

  4. Blood transfusions (mostly prior to 1992).

  5. Exposure to certain industrial chemicals and environmental toxins.

  6. Unprotected sex.

  7. Obesity, and a diet high in saturated fats, and processed foods.

  8. Tattoos or body piercings.

  9. High levels of triglycerides in the blood.

  10. Prescription medications including acetaminophen.

  11. Viral infections.

  12. Autoimmune diseases.


These are the signs and your liver is ‘broken’

It is particularly important to consider these symptoms if you identify with one or more of the risk factors mentioned above.

  1. Bloating and gas

  2. Acid reflux and heartburn

  3. Constipation

  4. Skin and/or eyes that are yellowish (a symptom of jaundice)

  5. Inability to lose weight

  6. High blood pressure

  7. Moodiness, anxiousness, or depression

  8. Dark urine

  9. Rosacea 

  10. Chronic fatigue

  11. Excessive sweating

  12. Bruise easily

  13. Poor appetite

There are 5 Steps to my liver Detox

Luckily, you can improve your liver’s functioning. Through a thorough liver detox, you can start to feel better as soon as a couple of weeks.


Step 1

Remove toxins from your diet- If you are eating a diet which is high in processed foods, you are endangering your liver.  Hydrogenated oils, refined sugar, junk foods and processed meats are notoriously toxic.  For example, added nitrates and nitrites, commonly found in junk foods, fast foods and processed meats, have been linked to serious health conditions. These chemicals are used to preserve foods to make them last longer, inhibit bacteria growth and preserve colour. Replace these foods immediately with healthy choices. Healthy foods taste great, and with a bit of creativity, you can create healthful meals. 

Roast your own organic chicken breast and turkey breast to replace deli meats for quick lunches and after school snacks. Replace crisps and other processed snacks with fresh fruit, carrot sticks, nuts and homemade granola bars.

Hydrogenated oils, also known as ‘trans fats,’ have higher levels of saturated fat. The chemical structure of the oil itself has been altered to increase shelf life. Consumption of trans fats dramatically increases the risk for heart disease by 25% or more. In addition, it is believed that trans fats cause problems with our immune system and can lead to inflammation.


Foods are your most powerful tool to protect and support the liver.    In order to have effective detoxification, you want to eat foods that contain compounds that support this process.  Below is a list of some of the best, but there are many!

  1. Artichoke– member of the milk thistle family which is long known to support liver function.  Artichokes also have compounds that support production and flow of bile which is key to good liver function and elimination.

  2. Garlic and all foods in the Allium genus of plants (leeks, onions, chives, etc) contain many compounds that support detoxification.  They are high in sulphur which help to support sulphation, an important pathway the liver uses for detoxification.

  3. Pomegranate– High in many compounds that protect the body from damage, one of which is Ellagic acid which supports the second phase of liver detox, critical for proper toxin removal from the body.

  4. Turmeric– Best known for its anti-inflammatory compounds, turmeric is rich in curcuminoids which are powerful antioxidants that protect the body during the detox process.

  5. Broccoli, good old broccoli and all members of the brassica family (kale, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, etc) are rich in many compounds that aid liver detoxification.  One of these important compounds is sulforaphane that boosts phase 2 of the process and again ensures proper removal of the toxin out of the body.

If you’re not sure what to eat or just too lazy to make your own clever choices, I can supply you with a detox plan that includes complete instructions including recipes and shopping lists.


Step 2

Drink raw vegetable juice- It can be virtually impossible to eat all of the raw vegetables you need to make your liver cleanse effective. However, by juicing a variety of raw vegetables, you can easily get the 4-5 servings of fresh, organic vegetables your body requires. Even vegetables that aren’t your favourites can be disguised and enjoyed in a fresh vegetable juice.

With impaired liver function, juicing vegetables has the added benefit of making the vegetables easier to digest, and more readily available for absorption.  Vegetables ideal for a liver cleanse include cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. While that combination may not sound much fun, you can add other vegetables that you enjoy to the mix including carrots, cucumber, beets and greens.

All of these vegetables help reduce acid levels in the body, helping to create a friendlier pH balance. Experiment with your favourite flavour combinations; you can add fresh herbs including parsley, mint and others to make the juices more enjoyable.

The high fibre content helps support a healthy digestive tract, hastening the elimination of toxins in your body. Some vegetables can help soothe the digestive tract, reduce intestinal gas, and has strong anti-inflammatory compounds as well as essential vitamins and minerals.

Once again, if you don’t feel like making your own choices, I can supply you with a full juicing plan which includes shopping lists and substation tables.


Step 3

Load up on potassium rich foods- Are you getting the recommended 4,700 milligrams per day of potassium? Chances are, you are not. Potassium-rich foods help to lower systolic blood pressure, lower cholesterol and support a healthy cardiovascular system, in addition to helping cleanse your liver. If you have been tempted to take potassium supplements, instead add these healthful foods to your diet.


Step 4

Eat animal liver or take liver tables- Liver from young, healthy, grass-fed cattle or chicken is rich with Vitamins A and B, folic acid, choline, iron, copper, zinc, chromium and CoQ10. Liver is one of the most nutrient-dense foods you can get.  If you eating liver is not for you, you can take beef liver pills. Look for a supplement that guarantees no hormones, pesticides or antibiotics are used in the feeding and care of the cattle.  I recommend Vital Proteins, Beef Liver 750mg, 120 Caps.


Step 5

Take supplements-

  1. Milk Thistle - is considered the “king” of detoxifying herbs, making it ideal for a liver cleanse. It helps to eliminate the build-up of heavy metals, prescription medications, environmental pollutants and alcohol in the liver.  In addition, it helps to reduce the negative effects on the liver after chemotherapy and radiation. The active ingredient silymarin helps to strengthen the cell walls in the liver, while supporting healthy regeneration.

  2. Turmeric -  reduces joint pain, is an effective anti-depressant, aids in digestion, helps to restore a healthy blood sugar balance, and supports healthy liver tissue and liver metabolism. 

  3. Dandelion Root - its root, is packed with vitamins and minerals.  It has a natural diuretic effect, allowing the liver to eliminate toxins quicker. It also helps to strengthen the immune system, balance blood sugar levels, relieve heartburn, and soothe digestive upset.

  4. Basic detox nutrients- Is designed for individuals with environmental toxicity. It can be used within a cleansing program or as a stand-alone product for preventive use. Basic Detox Nutrients is a complete multi vitamin-mineral formulation with higher levels of nutrients commonly found to be deficient in those with chemical overload, as well as those nutrients and botanicals that help the body handle the toxic load. I recommend Thorne research, Basic Detox Nutrients, 260 Veg Caps 

  5. Prothera Dual Detox is advanced blend of green plant concentrates and enzymes helps protect the body against chemicals ingested in the daily diet and through environmental exposure. Dual Detox™ is rich in chlorophylls from Chlorella and contains a unique broccoli extract with glucosinolates. The chlorophylls in Chlorella form tight molecular complexes with a wide variety of toxic chemical compounds preventing their absorption from the gastrointestinal tract. A high-strength enzyme blend also breaks down dietary antigens and may support assimilation of beneficial constituents of Chlorella. Glucosinolate compounds in broccoli are potent inducers of phase 2 detoxification processes in the liver. Most substances detoxified by the liver are released into the bile for excretion through the intestinal tract. Chlorella helps trap these toxins to avoid reabsorption. Dual Detox™ can be used as an adjunct to short-term detoxification programs or for daily detoxification support.  I recommend Prothera Dual Detox


Whichever supplements you decide to take, I can recommend medically graded supplements upon request. 

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