Detoxify your liver to stay healthy

If your liver fails, it won’t be long before you are lying in your coffin with a lily in your hands.

Yet, despite the enormous role the liver plays in keeping us alive and well, most of us give scant regard to it.

In fact, most people worry about and spend more on their hair (which is actually dead!) than for the liver. To a lot of people, if they are not a chronic alcoholic or they do not have hepatitis, the liver is supposed to be fine.

New research, especially in the holistic area, shows this perception to be dangerously flawed. The liver is the seat of metabolism and detoxification. It powerfully affects the way you feel physically.

Take a simple test (top right) to see if your liver has been neglected and could actually be begging for some caring.

HOW TO DETOXIFY

The liver is the major organ that can help you detoxify. If the liver is not functioning optimally, you are coping with an unnecessary toxin load.

Avoid eating while on a detoxification diet. Digestion is an very energy-consuming process. Energy towards healing and detoxification.

Take it easy. Do light walking exercises while on a detoxification programme. Heavy exercise consumes much energy and diverts energy away from healing.

BLOOD PURIFICATION

Herbs called ‘ blood purifiers’ strengthen the liver. This aids cleansing of the blood by making toxins harmless.

These herbs contain natural soaps called saponins. They break down damaged red blood cells so that the iron and nutrients that they contain may be recycled.

These also help the river in clearing away impacted toxins.

You might think of saponins as the ‘laundry detergents’ for your blood.

We sometimes call blood purifiers “alternatives”. This is because they “alter” blood chemistry.

Dr Henry Bieler in his book, Food Is Your Best Medicine, explains that the liver is an alkaline organ. If you have tried eating oxen or other liver, you will know that it is a bitter organ.

If you have vomited bile which is produced by the liver, you will certainly remember the bitter taste.

The liver neutralises poisons by alkalinising them and eliminating them via the bile. Bile is the substance which emulsifies (makes an oily substance become water soluble) the fats that we eat.

Dish soap is also a bitter alkaline substance which emulsifies fats on our dishes so that they may be washed away.

The bitter components of blood purifiers are believed to aid the liver in washing away irritants in the blood.

Thus, in traditional medicine, eating bitter foods is considered good for liver health. That is why the bitter gourd and bitter melon are held in high esteem in Ayurvedic diets.

Today, we avoid all things bitter. Our lives are filled with sweet drinks, food and desserts.

Sometimes, you may notice an aggravation in the very symptoms that you are attempting to eliminate.

The old rash come back. You see some pimples. You should consider these as positive signs that the purification is in progress.

As your body release the toxins,you will find an increased energy level and feeling of well being.

SIMPLE DETOX

Try going on a weekend detoxification. Go light on Friday evening. Skip your meals.

Just take fruits and drink lots of water. This prepares your metabolism to slow down and start the cleansing process.

Start your detoxification on Saturday morning with a glass of pure and raw carrot juice.

Carrot is one of the most efficient cleansing juices. It is packed with vitamins and minerals.

It is also one of nature’s richest beta carotene source – an important free radical neutralising agent. It seems to help boost the enzyme systems in the liver.

Follow this through with some lime juice – one part lime to nine parts pure water.

Lime and grapefruit juice are very cleansing. It also helps dissolve impacted material and stones in the gall and urinary bladders.

During the day, continue to take lots of pure water(distilled or reverse osmosis).

The other juice that complements carrot juice very well is apple. There are 68 varieties of apples and they are all cleansing and nutritious.

Young coconut water is another nourishing juice. You may add a dash of lime to this. It also has a cleansing especially on the liver.

Try to do only water and juices during the weekend.

FOLLOW THROUGH CLEANSING

Now you are rady for some solid food. Here are some foods that can bevery helpful at this stage: Melon, cucumber, cauliflower, papaya, celery and falx-seed oil.

All vegetables should be lightly steamed without salt, sugar, spice and condiments.

You can also take fish oil. If you are supplementing, make sure your fish has undergone molecular distillation and is toxin free.

At this stage, you should keep yourself well hydrated by drinking lots of juices and pure water.

A metabolic cleansing programme is n ot a weight loss diet – you should not feel hungry. Choose at least six servings a day from the foods suggested.

A serving is one piece or a full cup (eight ounces). Just doing this even until lunchtime Saturday will already yield results.

If you can stretch this further to SUnday night, it will be even better.

WHAT TO EXPECT?

As the liver removes accumulated toxins over the course of the metabolic cleansing programme, you may experience some minor discomfort during the first few days.

Common symptoms include fatigue, poor stamina, light headedness, headaches, insomnia, muscle pains, joint pains, gas and bloating, skin irritation and an irritable mood. Prepare those around you for this.

An important word of caution: if you are ill, on prescription medication or under medical care, seek your doctor’s advise and permission before you embark on a programme like this.

Extra caution is also advised if you are diabetic or prone to yeast and fungal infections.