Here is the original article before it was edited due to space concerns:
Tune-up Your Liver this Spring!
The liver is the largest internal organ in the human body and its most important job is the reduce and remove toxins in the bloodstream (as the liver stores blood) and acts as a filter between the heart and the large intestines. It also makes digestive enzymes. It suffers most when it comes to substances like: drug poisons (pharmaceutical and recreational including alcohol), metal and various chemical poisons (including preservatives, additives, pesticides, herbicides, and a myriad of environmental toxins) and overload from pathogens (such as Candida yeast, viruses, bacteria and parasites). Toxins can accumulate and be stored here, impairing proper functioning of this organ. If the liver becomes overloaded it can become unable to detoxify the whole body!
The liver is located under the rib cage just underneath your right breast. If you press around in this area and find soreness, this could mean that there is an accumulation of toxicity in your liver!
Simply put, some physical signs of a congested and/or sluggish liver and accumulation of wastes products are: pain on the right side of the body, strong underarm odor (especially if stronger on the right side), allergies, stiff neck, malabsorption issues, diarrhea/constipation, hemorrhoids, jaundice, upset stomach, indigestion, gas, bloating, puffy face, tendency to hold weight in the upper abdomen, nausea, headaches, cold sweats, “age” spots, groggy sluggish feelings, high cholesterol, hormonal imbalances, blood sugar issues, insomnia and chronic throat problems.
Traditional Chinese medicine
In traditional Chinese medicine, each organ is associated with a particular season of the year and Spring is the season for the liver. Spring is a great time to ensure that your liver is in balance and a particularly good time to decongest the liver. Regular cleansing with the seasonal change honors this relationship and keeps things running smoothly.
In the five element theory of Chinese medicine, each organ has been determined to be related to a specific emotion. The liver is related to anger especially repressed anger or frustration. When the liver energy is congested, a person can experience depression or irritability or defensiveness or discouragement as well. Hence the liver plays a vital role in our emotions. Ironically, this works both ways. With our modern technological busy lives, we have all but lost touch with our physical bodies and its rhythm which leads to stress which leads to anger and frustration which can be the biggest factor in causing a liver imbalance. When our liver is healthy, we have more patience, endurance and perseverance.
The body is always talking to us - we need to learn to listen
In 1976, Louise L. Hay wrote her first book, “Heal Your Body” containing a list of different bodily ailments and their “probable” metaphysical causes.
Liver (From Louise Hay’ s book “Heal Your Body”): Seat of anger and primitive emotions. Chronic complaining. Justifying fault-finding to deceive yourself. Feeling bad.
If you see a correlation between the physical issue, in this case the liver, and the metaphysical probable cause listed, then Louise Hay also lists a new thought pattern to repeat to yourself. (I write out sticky notes and post them everywhere when I am working on a condition.) Here is what “Heal Your Body” suggests as new thought patterns to help your Liver vibrate at a new frequency and get its energy flowing: “Love and peace and joy are what I know.” “I choose to live through the open space in my heart.” “I look for love and find it everywhere.”
An old formula to decongest your liver
In the spirit of keeping things simple and gentle, here is an old formula used in many parts of the world to "flush" your liver to clear it of congestion:
Ingredients (organic is preferable) 1 Tbsp. cold pressed olive oil (be sure it is not rancid) The juice of one lemon A big pinch of cayenne pepper
Mix all these ingredients and drink first thing in the morning before you have anything else. (I just shoot it back!)
The effect of this is to gently jolt the gallbladder which then flushes the liver. You may feel nothing in which case you can go ahead and have your breakfast. Sometimes the flush can make you empty your bowel.
If you feel a little nauseated (which is not typical), just drink some apple juice or water to dilute the mixture and lie down for about five minutes before going on.
If you find this mixture is too strong for you, simply cut the portions in half the next time you do it.
This combination of the lemon and the olive oil helps dissolve hard bile. Lemon juice is a very alkalizing drink and will help normalize your liver and blood. The cayenne (also known as capsicum) promotes secretion and is a great overall catalyst which stimulates circulation.
Connect with your body and ask it how often you can do this recipe. I like to do this several mornings in a row to mildly move the sludge that has built up.
You will be amazed at how it changes the way your body smells and especially how it changes your breath. It’s simple!
A note on Liver Flushes and Cleanses
There are bunches of articles and recipes for liver flushes that can be found on the Internet. There are also many boxed liver cleansing programs and kits. If you wish to do a full blown liver flush or cleanse, use caution as you must FIRST cleanse the colon and kidneys in order to handle the added load of toxins that will be released from the liver. Just prioritize for best results. Consult with your colon hydrotherapist, acupuncturist, ayurveda consultant, herbalist, chiropractor, holistic health care provider, etc. for specific guidance. The Diet
Hopefully it goes without saying that a diet that is made up of whole vital organic foods is optimal for a healthy strong liver. I believe that when I am conscious of the healing properties of foods, that connection potentiates the benefits even more. So when you eat any of the foods listed below, think to yourself, “I am nourishing and nurturing my liver”. Here are some foods which are very beneficial to include to support your liver:
allspice apples apricots artichokes beets bitter leafy salad greens (dandelion, chicory, endive, rocket) butternut squash carrot juice collard greens cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage) dandelion leaves, stems and roots garlic and onions ginger green peppers high-antioxidant fruits (cherries, cranberries, gooseberries, grapes, plums, pomegranates, quince, raspberries, strawberries and tangerines). lemon or lime water omega 3 oils parsley peppermint sage stewed tomatoes watercress white beans
Carrot Salad for 7 days
Here is a recipe for a carrot salad which will also help cleanse the liver if eaten every day for 7 consecutive days.
Ingredients (organic is preferable)
1 cup grated or finely shredded carrots 1 Tbsp. cold pressed olive oil (be sure it is not rancid) 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice Optional: raisins or pineapple, to taste
Combine all ingredients and enjoy eating it. Be sure you do not miss a day for seven days or you must begin all over again.
Another way to give your liver support is through the additional of fresh vegetable and fruit juices to your regimen.
Here are some combinations that N.W. Walker, D.Sc. compiled in his book “Raw Vegetable Juices” that help a troubled liver:
Carrot, beet and cucumber Carrot and spinach Carrot Carrot, beet and coconut Carrot, celery and parsley Carrot, dandelion and lettuce
The use of concentrated herbal preparations can also play a role in restoring balance to your liver. Herbal preparations work on many levels: energetic, functional, chemical and mystical. (Because herbs work in this multidimensional way, synthetics and pharmaceutical products don’t work in the same way.)
Again there are tons of resources on the internet about what herbs you can use to strengthen and cleanse your liver function. It is commonly agreed that the herb milk thistle is a good one to start off with as it contains some of the most potent liver cleansing and protecting substances known. Consult your local herbalist to discuss the best options for you.
When your liver is healthy and happy, your whole body will sing with joy! So support and nourish your liver and have infinite gratitude for all the work it does for you!