Supplements for Liver Function

The liver is an amazing organ which performs many metabolic and detoxification functions, including the processing of nutrients, glucose regulation, bile production to aid fat absorption, and elimination of natural waste, including hormones, from the body. It is able to fully repair and regenerate itself, however, many factors can put a great burden on liver health and affect its vital functions.

Exposure to environmental toxins, poor diet, viral infection, alcohol and drug use and even stress can cause liver inflammation, impact liver function and lead to chronic disease. According to the British Liver Trust, over 40 people die from liver disease in the UK every day. Symptoms of liver inflammation may include a bloated abdomen, change in colour of urine and/or stool, fatigue, itchy skin and/or skin rash, fever, appetite loss, nausea, vomiting and a yellow appearance of the skin and whites of the eyes (jaundice).

You can look after your liver by avoiding excessive alcohol intake and by consuming specific foods and nutrients that support its metabolic and detoxification functions.

Key Foods for Liver Function

  • Cruciferous vegetables for example Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and kale. These foods support liver detoxification processes and help to protect against liver damage.
  • Berries or other fruits and vegetables which are red, purple or blue in colour, contain plant compounds called anthocyanins, which can protect against oxidative stress caused during normal liver detoxification.
  • Beetroot contains betalains, pigments which have anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and liver-protective properties. They support detoxification enzymes and stimulate bile flow.
  • Phytoestrogens are ‘plant oestrogens’ found in soybeans and soy-based products such as tempeh and tofu, as well as chickpeas, mungbeans and flaxseed. They support liver detoxification and healthy hormone balance.
  • Green tea is packed full of antioxidants to support liver enzymes. It can reduce fat build-up in the liver and helps to lower the risk of damage from oxidative stress.

Which Supplements Can Support Liver Function?

  1. Milk Thistle
  2. Dandelion (Taraxacum)
  3. Glutathione
  4. N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC)
  5. Artichoke Extract

Top Tips on Buying Supplements for Liver Function

  • When choosing herbal or nutritional supplements, try to find products with minimal filler ingredients, particularly if you have a sensitive gut.
  • If you are pregnant, breastfeeding or are taking any medications, consult your doctor or pharmacist to check the above supplements are safe for you to take.
  • Herbal supplements such as milk thistle, dandelion or artichoke extract can often be found in tincture or capsule form. Seek the guidance of a qualified herbalist or registered nutritional therapist before taking herbal supplements to ensure the right dosage and duration.

Nutritional Therapy Support For Liver Function

Work with a registered Nutritional Therapist for a personalised nutrition and diet plan, tailored to your specific health requirements. For one-to-one support with liver function and to book a consultation, head over to our expert page here:

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