Liver is the body’s largest solid organ, responsible for the healthy upkeep of the human body. Sizing almost to the bulk of a football, this organ is vital to life, as without a functional liver there is no scope of survival. Responsible for the body’s metabolic functions as well as the immune system, the liver contributes significantly in breaking down substances, extracting energy and removing toxins from the bloodstream.
When you have so much at stake, it is best way to keep the liver healthy. The first step to health is to avoid diseases.
Here are 10 tips to achieve and maintain liver wellness:
1. Target a healthy weight and maintain it
A healthy body weight is the first step to wellness. To keep your live healthy and avoid chances of having a fatty liver that will lead to one of the growing forms of liver disease, an ideal weight and ideal BMI (body mass index) must be maintained.
If you tend to be overweight or are higher up on the scale, it is essential to lose those extra pounds for a healthy liver. Weight loss plays an important part in helping reduce liver fat, which means a healthier liver.
2. Include a balanced diet
Food plays a significant role in overall health and so does it in the maintaining liver wellness. A balanced diet is a key to a healthy liver. Meals should have a platter of proteins, carbohydrates, fibres, fats and minerals. Hydration is equally relevant to a balanced diet, therefore water intake is also a key ingredient.
To keep your meals balanced, it is best to avoid high calorie-meals, saturated fat, refined carbohydrates (such as white bread, white rice and regular pasta) and sugars. Raw and uncooked fish and meats are to be prevented.
Healthy fiber from fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grain breads, rice and cereals must be added to the diet. Consumption of meat is needed (but the amount of red meat must be limited). Dairy (low-fat milk and small amounts of cheese) must be added. Also needed are fats in meals. The “good” fats that are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated ones derived from vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, and fish must be made a part of the diet.
3. Regular Exercise
Regular exercise is remedy to a number of health problems and the first step to prevent diseases. The liver similarly needs consistent exercises as it helps to burn triglycerides that leads to reduction of liver fat. Exercise always may not lead to weight loss but will certainly lead to reduction of fat stored in liver cells.
4. Keep away from toxins
Toxins in the body causes damage and brings the onset of disease. Liver cells are greatly injured by contact of these harmful toxins. Avoid direct contact with toxins. These substances exist in cleaning and aerosol products, insecticides, chemicals, and additives. While using such products, make sure to wear a mask and keep the room ventilated. Smoking is a habit that brings you in contact with toxins that cause huge damage, therefore it sis best to avoid or limit smoking.
5. Limit consumption of alcohol
Many of the modern day problems are associated with alcohol. The Liver is greatly affected by the consumption of alcoholic beverages. Regular consumption, too much amount and mixing of the beverage can cause damage, destroy liver cells and scar your liver.
To keep your liver healthy, it is advised to either quit the drinks completely or do consume only in moderate amounts so that there is no permanent damage on cells. For the best advice, consult a doctor.
6. Stay away from illicit drugs
Drugs, until prescribed are deadly for body. Liver gets permanently damaged with use of substances. Not are these drugs illicit, they are addictive as well as deadly. Reports state the numbers of such users growing drastically by the years.
Falling under the category of illicit substances are marijuana/hashish, cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants, or prescription-type psychotherapeutics (pain relievers, tranquilizers, stimulants, and sedatives) used non-medically. Stay away from these as they destroy liver cells causing irreparable damage.
7. Be safe from contaminated needles
Contaminated needles cause irreparable damage to the body. Coming in direct contact with bloodstream, the liver processes blood; purifying toxins and during this stage contaminated needles damage healthy liver cells.
Dirty needles are not just associated with intravenous drug use, they are a serious issue for a healthy body. Any type of skin penetration involving sharp instruments or needles, unsafe injection practices, tattoos and body piercings, etc. have the chance of contamination. It is advised to use safe needles free from contamination ensuring a healthy liver.
8. Take medications according to directions
Medicines are for good health and to cure disease but when taken incorrectly it will have serious effect on health, causing irreparable damage. Taking too much of it or too little or mixing up different medicines can seriously harm your liver. It is advised to not mix alcohol with other drugs and medications, even if they are not taken at the same time. Also when getting prescriptions for any ailments from your doctor, inform about any over-the-counter medicines, supplements, and natural or herbal remedies that you use.
9. Get vaccinated
There are vaccines available for keeping your liver safe from diseases. There are vaccines for hepatitis A and hepatitis B, but there’s no vaccine against the hepatitis C virus.
10. Don’t share personal hygiene items
Though this works for all, not sharing of personal hygiene items prevents disease. For example, razors, toothbrushes and nail clippers can carry microscopic levels of blood or other body fluids that may be contaminated. To keep your liver healthy it is a necessary precaution.
[Also Read: Multi Organ Transplant in India]