The liver is the largest organ inside the body. In an adult, it is about the size of a football and weighs close to three pounds. It is located behind the ribs in the upper right-hand portion of the abdomen. Shaped like a triangle, the liver is dark reddish-brown and consists of two main lobes. There are over 300 billion specialized cells in the liver that are connected by a well organized system of bile ducts and blood vessels called the biliary system.
The liver is such an important organ that we can survive only one or two days if it shuts down—if the liver fails, your body will fail, too. Fortunately, the liver can function even when up to 75% of it is diseased or removed. This is because it has the amazing ability to create new liver tissue (i.e. it can regenerate itself) from healthy liver cells that still exist.
The liver does hundreds of vital things to make sure everything runs smoothly. Some of the most important functions of the liver include:
- Stores vitamins, sugar and iron to help give your body energy.
- Controls the production and removal of cholesterol.
- Clears your blood of waste products, drugs, and other poisonous substances.
- Makes clotting factors to stop excessive bleeding after cuts or injuries.
- Produces immune factors and removes bacteria from the bloodstream to combat infection.
- Releases a substance called “bile” to help digest food and absorb important nutrients.
We can do a lot to help our liver with it's enormous job of keeping us healthy. Eat whole, fresh foods, limiting sugar, processed foods, fast foods and any foods with chemical additives. Organic foods will not have the pesticides that your liver must filter out. All medications must also be taken care of by the liver even a simple aspirin, so limit these too. Alcohol takes a tremendous toll on the liver. Detoxifying the liver regularly (this should be supervised by a nutritionist or Dr. Dave to ensure proper Phase 1 and Phase 2 liver detoxification support) and switch to natural cleaning products for your home. Drink plenty of filtered water, exercise regularly and consider taking some liver support supplements:
Take care of your liver and it will take care of you!
Submitted by Tricia @ Nutrition by Tricia