I love Spring. Here in Missouri, it is my favorite season. While walking our land, new shades of yellow or green growth appear each day. So far, bursts of color dot the landscape as Sweet William, Indian Paintbrush, and Wild Geranium offer their cheer; all while Red Bud and Dogwood add a mysterious beauty to our surrounding woodland.
Our bodies go through daily and seasonal changes as well. Energetically, Spring is the time to renew and strengthen the liver and gall bladder. It is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of seasonal foods, herbs and energies to heal and renew these organs.
The liver is located in the upper right-hand portion of the abdominal cavity, beneath the diaphragm and on top of the stomach, right kidney, and intestines. The major liver functions are to:
- Produce bile, which helps carry away waste and break down fats in the small intestine during digestion.
- Produce specific proteins for blood plasma.
- Store and release glucose as needed.
- Process hemoglobin and use its iron content (which is stored in the liver).
- Convert harmful ammonia to urea (and sends it out through the urine).
- Clear the blood of drugs and harmful toxins in foods.
- Regulate blood clotting.
- Produce immune factors and removes bacteria from the bloodstream.
- Clear excess bilirubin from the body.
- Produce enzymes that break down foods for processing in the digestive tract.
When our blood sugar is high or low, when our digestion is sluggish, if we don’t digest dairy carbohydrates well, or our immune system is compromised, our liver is not operating efficiently.
Give your liver attention this Spring; focus your intention and create new dietary and exercise habits that take advantage of this energetic opportunity and help your liver health throughout the year.
GALL BLADDER FUNCTIONS
The gall bladder is a small pear-like structure that is just under the liver on the right side. It stores bile made by the liver that is used in the digestion of fats.
Stomachaches after eating fats, heartburn and gallstones are signs of an overworked gall bladder. It is the trend today to remove gallbladders for these issues. When the gallbladder is removed, the bottom portion of the liver takes over the labors of the gallbladder and most people become even more sensitive to eating fats. This in turn puts more stress and strain on the liver. Instead, consider dietary changes that can heal the liver and gall bladder and add vitality and longevity to your health.
Foods that Support Liver Health
- Garlic helps your liver activate enzymes that can flush out toxins. It has high amounts of allicin and selenium, which aid liver functions.
- Grapefruit and grapefruit juice help your liver flush out carcinogens and toxins due to its high Vitamin C and antioxidants.
- Beets and carrots help your liver with its high flavonoids, which improve the overall function of the liver.
- Spinach and leafy greens help neutralize heavy metals, chemicals and pesticides and act as a protective mechanism for your liver.
- Avocados have high amounts of glutathione, which help your liver filter out harmful materials.
- Cruciferous vegetables have high amounts of glucosinolate, which help our body digest food better.
- Lemons are high in vitamin C and help the liver cleanse metals and toxins and aid the digestive process.
- Turmeric helps the body digest fats and increases the production of bile. It is a natural detox for your liver.
- Walnuts are high in glutathione and Omega 3 fatty acids, which cleanse the liver.
- Apples are high in pectin which hold the chemical constituents necessary to release toxins from the digestive tract. This lessens the toxic load that the liver has to handle.
- Olive oil, cold pressed organic, hemp, and flax seed are great for the liver in moderation. It helps the body by providing a lipid base that can draw out harmful toxins, which lessens the liver’s burden.
This is an excellent way to help the liver cleanse and revitalize. One thing that many people may not know is that it is important when you juice to chew your juice. It is the movement of the masseter muscles in the jaw that activates and releases amylase in the saliva, which initiates digestion in the mouth and stomach.
To learn about juicers, and juice recipes, check out: http://www.rawjuicecleanserecipes.com/what-juicer-is-the-best-for-me/
For other excellent juice recipes, try: https://juicerecipes.com/recipes/
Liver Gall Bladder Formula: Dr. Christopher’s brand offers an excellent quality, economical liver transition formula and a Liver/Gall Bladder formula. The transition formula is helpful for people who have used drugs, alcohol, caffeine, antibiotics, medication or have heavy metals in the body. The Liver/Gall bladder formula is for those who want to strengthen and rejuvenate the liver. If you want to accomplish both, start with several months of the liver transition and then change to the liver/Gall bladder formula until you are satisfied with the results.
Lemon: 1 drop of organic lemon essential oil in 1 quart of water stimulates the liver to gently cleanse the liver, lymph and kidneys. This can be done over a long period of time with no ill affects. It is important when drinking lemon oil to drink plenty of water each day, so the body can eliminate toxins from the system and not accumulate sediment in the kidneys or bladder.
Grapefruit: 1 drop of grapefruit in 1 quart of water stimulates the breakdown of fatty tissue in the liver as well as fat cells in the body. This is done over a period of time.
Tri-Citrus Blend: mix grapefruit, lemon and bitter orange in equal parts and then put 1 drop in 1 quart of water. This mixture tastes great, and supports cleansing of the lymph, liver, kidneys and breaks down fat cells in the body.
Holy Basil or Sweet Basil Compress: Put 3 drops of either of these oils in 1 t of olive oil and rub on the area of the liver. Place a hot compress over the area and rest for 15-20 minutes. Used once or twice per week, this is very supportive and nurturing to the overall health of the liver and immune system.
Lemon Compress: This is a helpful treatment for gallstones. Mix 2 drops of lemon in 1 T of castor oil and apply to the liver. Place a hot compress over it and relax. It is vital to drink plenty of water after this compress treatment. Do this several times per week until the issue is resolved. Make sure to drink plenty of good water to flush your entire system.
For more details, see foods and herbs that help spring cleansing of the liver in my article: http://www.napashaway.com/spring.html
Written by Char Milliman on April 11, 2016.