By Heide Kennedy, Arizona Farm Bureau Communications Intern
Many of us like to eat and drink certain things to improve the function of a certain part of the body. For example, eating probiotic-rich foods to promote gut health, or eating fiber-rich foods for your digestive tract. But how often do we think about eating to keep our liver healthy?
This little organ does a lot for you, as it removes toxins from your blood which promotes digestion, functions as a storehouse for vitamins, and a whole lot more. Dr. Christina Lindenmeyer suggests the following 8 foods to give your liver a boost!
It turns out that coffee can do more than just perk you up in the morning. Besides providing you with a caffeine boost, coffee can also lower the enzymes in your liver, which reduces any inflammation that might have been in your liver. Dr. Lindenmeyer notes that it is important that it be black coffee and not the super creamy and sugary kind.
For those who hate coffee, green tea can also promote liver health as well! The benefits of tea are similar to the benefits of coffee, as it also reduces inflammation in the liver.
Fish and chicken
Your liver also helps to process some of the macronutrients that you consume. Thus, Dr. Lindenmeyer notes that getting enough lean protein is important to fuel your liver so that it can produce some proteins that are important to your overall health.
Olives and olive oil
Olives are very rich in vitamin E as well as antioxidants, both of which your liver loves. Dr. Lindenmeyer says that olive oil raises your good cholesterol, which can help to prevent fatty liver disease, and not to mention, is good for your heart as well.
Just like olives and olive oil, nuts have healthy cholesterol and vitamin E too. They are also very high in protein. Some suggested nuts include almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios, pine nuts, and pumpkin seeds.
Your liver is in charge of blood clotting, and vitamin K plays a large role in this function. Leafy, green, vegetables are a great source of vitamin K. Dr. Lindenmeyer also notes that greens provide glutathione, an antioxidant that is good for your liver as well.
Just like leafy vegetables, coffee, and tea, berries provide a huge number of anti-inflammatory antioxidants. Dr. Lindenmeyer notes that blueberries are a great option.
Oatmeal is a great source of fiber, which benefits your liver in a somewhat indirect way. All the fiber in that oatmeal is great for keeping you regular. This benefits your liver in that if you get too constipated, toxins begin to build up in the body.
So, in addition to eating to maintain the health of our guts, or digestive tracts, among many others, incorporating some foods to promote liver health is great too! What makes this even easier, is that a lot of the foods that promote liver health are also good for other organs or body functions as well!
For more health-related articles, check out the Fill Your Plate blog!