The modern lifestyle and the changing eating patterns across the globe have taken a toll on liver health. The liver, like all the other organs in our body, plays a major role in ensuring the overall health and well-being of a person. An unhealthy liver can cause various health problems including metabolic disorder, type 2 diabetes, and more.
We are all aware of the damage alcohol consumption does to our livers however, not many are aware of the dangerous effects a diet can have on the organ. With liver diseases affecting millions, it’s important to know that an unhealthy fatty diet can cause serious non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. While you can’t manage or monitor all the risk factors that cause liver diseases, consuming certain foods and drinks may help improve liver health.
In this article, we at TABIIB would like to talk about a few foods and drinks that can improve liver health and a few others that can diminish your liver health.
Foods To Consume For Better Liver Health
Consuming high fiber foods such as oatmeal is known to be helpful for the liver as they are high in beta-glucans. The compound beta-glucans in general have various benefits and are popularly known to improve cholesterol levels and boost heart health. A 2017 study also identifies that these compounds help the fight against inflammation, diabetes, and obesity.
With regard to the liver, the benefits of beta-glucans have so far been only tested on mice. A clinical study identified that these compounds protected the liver of mice by reducing the amount of fat stored.
Eating healthy and adding veggies to your diet can have various benefits to the body. Broccoli in particular can help with keeping your liver healthy. Some studies show that broccoli can help protect the body from non-alcoholic fatty liver diseases. The vegetable is also known to protect the liver from damage by increasing the liver’s natural detoxification enzymes. So next time you are looking for something healthy to eat, try steaming or stir-frying this healthy vegetable.
3. Green Tea
Are you a green tea fan? Then we have some good news for you. Research shows that green tea has an antioxidant called catechins which are known to protect the body from all types of cancer including the liver. In addition to this, a 2015 study identified that green tea can help your body reduce the overall fat content and other signs that cause non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
Almonds are a perfect midday snack. They curb your hunger, give you energy, and most importantly, improve your overall health. With regards to the liver, Almonds are a great source of vitamin E, a nutrient that is popularly known to help protect the liver against fatty liver disease. Interestingly, these nuts are also known to improve heart health. So the next time you are at a grocery store, pick up some almonds, and add them to your diet.
Yes, you heard that right! Drinking coffee might save you from life-threatening liver diseases. A study conducted in the Netherlands discovered that coffee does wonders for the liver. The research in particular showed how coffee protects the body from liver fibrosis, a disease that affects one out of 10 Americans.
Foods To Avoid For Better Liver Health
In general, a healthy, balanced diet is important for the overall well-being of your body. However, the consumption of the below-mentioned foods in excess can damage your liver health in particular.
1. Fatty Foods
Fatty foods cause harm to your entire body. Excess consumption of foods such as burgers, french fries, or foods that are generally rich in saturated fats can cause damage to your liver. Over time, this poor choice of diet can lead to inflammation and cirrhosis, a deadly liver disease.
2. Sugary Foods
Sugary foods might satisfy your cravings but they can damage your liver health in the long run. If you didn’t already know liver helps in converting sugar into fat. So when you consume too much sugar, your body ends up with too much, hanging around in places it shouldn’t.
Alcohol is the mother of all evil. Too much alcohol can cause fatty liver disease as well as other liver disorders. So do the liver a favor, and limit your alcohol intake.
4. Excess Salt
Our body needs some salt, but excessive consumption can cause great damage. A study identified that excess consumption of salt can actually cause fibrosis, the first stage of liver scarring.
5. Packaged Foods
The problem with packaged foods is that they are high in sugar, salt, and fats. These ingredients can cause a lot of damage to the overall health of your body. So the next time you crave these foods, think about the long-term effect they can have on your body.
Like most organs, even the liver plays an important role in the smooth functioning of the human body. So it’s very important to not take that for granted and ensure that you eat the right foods to keep your body healthy. While you can’t control all the risk factors you can certainly control what you eat or drink on a daily basis. So when you are choosing your foods, be wise, and opt for foods that will benefit your body. If you wish to know more consult a nutritionist for a customized plan.