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Liver Cleansing and supporting Foods

liver foods collectionsThe liver has many important functions that keeps a person healthy. It removes harmful material from the bloodstream and helps digest food. A functioning liver works as our bodies’ fat-burning organ: It converts nutrients from the food we eat into essential blood components, storing vitamins and minerals and producing proteins and enzymes to maintain hormone balances in our bodies. Our livers also help our immune system fight infections, remove bacteria from the blood and make bile, which is essential for digesting our meals.

Problems with your liver can be inherited or can occur if your body is infected by any viruses or harmful chemicals, according to The Mayo Clinic. Mistreating your liver can raise the risk of obesity, cardiovascular disease, chronic fatigue, headaches, digestive problems, allergies and many other ailments. Although the immune system protects our body from many dangers, it is the liver that protects the immune system from becoming overloaded.

But the good news is the liver is the only visceral organ that possesses the remarkable capacity to regenerate. The liver can regenerate after either surgical removal, disease, or after chemical injury. It is known that as little as 25% of the original liver mass can regenerate back to its full size.

These foods below can help protect, regenerate, heal your liver. Add them to your diet, reduce stress, and cut out or, at least, reduce your intake of animal products such as meat, dairy, and others that are high in cholesterol.

1. Beets and Carrots
Beets are a high-antioxidant vegetable that contain a number of nutrients that have been shown to be cleansing and detoxifying. A few of these include betaine, which helps the liver cells eliminate toxins; pectin, a fiber which clears the toxins that have been removed from the liver so they don’t reincorporate back into the body; and betalains,  pigments with high anti-inflammatory properties to encourage the detoxification process. (1)

Carrots are one of the top sources of carotenoids called beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A. Carotenoids also help keep your liver healthy. The liver produces bile, which removes wastes, but bile stays in the liver or gallbladder until fats enter the small intestine and trigger its release. Carotenoids are fat-soluble, so when you eat a carrot, they stimulate bile to flow and remove wastes. 


2. Grapefruit
High in both vitamin C and antioxidants, grapefruit increases the natural cleansing processes of the liver. A small glass of freshly-squeezed grapefruit juice will help boost production of the liver detoxification enzymes that help flush out carcinogens and other toxins. (2)


3. Cruciferous Vegetables
These are a rich source of bi-functional modulators to balance both detox pathways in the liver. These include watercress, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, and brussel sprouts. The cruciferous vegetables contain phyto-nutrients such as sulforaphane, which is an isothiocyanate and a potent inducer of phase 2 liver detox enzymes.

4. Avocados
Avocados can help the body produce a type of antioxidant called glutathione. Glutathione is needed by the liver to filter out harmful substances and protect liver cells from damage. … In addition to glutathione, avocados are rich sources of Vitamin C and Vitamin E, antioxidants that neutralize free radicals.

5. Lemons and limes
Lemons and limes aid in cleansing, boosting immunity, balancing pH levels. The vitamins and minerals contained in lemons, help to loosen toxins from the body thereby flushing unwanted materials from the digestive tract. The citric acid in lemons helps maximize enzyme function, which stimulates and aids the liver in detoxification.
6. Milk Thisle seeds (ground)
Milk thistle contains silymarin and silybin, antioxidants that are known to help protect the liver from toxins, including the effects of alcohol. Not only has silymarin been found to increase glutathione (a powerful antioxidant that is crucial for liver detoxification), but it also may help to regenerate liver cells.
7. Garlic & Onion
Garlic has compounds that can flush away toxic from your stomach. It is rich in selenium, Allicin, and enzymes that clean the liver.
There are many key compounds in onions that promote liver health. Folic acid – is essential for protein metabolism and the formation of red blood cells. Liver disease is often accompanied by a deficiency in folic acid.
8. Chlorella & Cilantro Combo
Chlorella eaten with food or dosing chlorella 1 hour prior to a cilantro dose will bind the neurotoxin in the bile with the chlorella and carry it out in the feces. Cilantro causes the liver to release the bile. Cilantro is also an important source of organic selenium, a very important mineral in heavy metal detox.
9. Apples
Apples are rich in pectin, the soluble fiber that helps remove toxins and cholesterol from the blood, which helps your liver big time! They’re also rich in malic acid, a naturally cleansing nutrient that removes carcinogens and other toxins from the blood.
10. Green Tea
Green tea is packed with catechins, an antioxidant compound that in the proper dose delivers big benefits like lower cholesterol and reduced risk of heart disease and cancer.
11. Turmeric
Turmeric supplementation helps prevent high cholesterol levels in the blood and reduces the risk of fatty liver disease by regulating the enzymes responsible for cholesterol metabolism. It has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant.
12. Olive oil, hemp oil, flax oil
Liver damage is caused by inflammation and oxidative stress; extra virgin olive oil (also cold-pressed hemp and flax oils) can reduce this stress. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce inflammation throughout the body (a common cause of many chronic diseases). These need to be used sparingly – they best pair up with greens and vegetables (salads).

 

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Teas in Bulk? Yes, Please!

Hi, darlings!

Several of you have asked me about teas – what kinds/brands I use, which ones I like and recommend, etc.

I prefer organic herbal teas without weird additives and usually in bulk! Herbs can boost your metabolism, stimulate digestion, and prevent and alleviate numerous health conditions.

These are the ones we usually keep in stock:

  1. Frontier Natural Products Organic Tea Lemon Ginger (my fave – you can be sure I’m sipping this brew as I’m writing  haha )

This is a generous one pound bag of great quality herbs. Ingredients are simply A-M-A-Z-I-N-G and include: organic roasted chicory root, organic ginger root, organic orange peel, organic lemongrass, organic lemon essential oil, organic hibiscus flowers, organic coriander seed, organic chips. If you are a tea lover and enjoy experiencing new kinds and flavors like I do, most definitely try this lemon ginger tea! It makes a flavorful and rich-in-color concoction. The herb combination provide your body with multiple benefits, some of which include:

-Chicory root

  • liver supporting properties
  • anti-inflammatory properties (useful in managing joint problems, including osteoarthritis)
  • source of inulin
  •  might assist in curing arrhythmias, fibrillation, and tachycardia, a state where the heartbeat is too quick. Additionally, it may be highly successful in treating thrombosis.
  •  functions like an all-natural laxative and may alleviate the distress of constipation. In one study people who used the nutritional supplement containing chicory found decreased difficulty when trying to use the bathroom, not to mention increased digestion.
  • rich in antioxidants, which, in plants, commonly come in the kind of compounds called phenolics.
  • raises the circulation of bile, which supports digestion. Chicory root might help optimize blood composition and may be worth consideration by anyone trying to reach the best liver and gallbladder health because additional bile helps break down fats.

*possible side effects:

There are some documented issues with using chicory if you’re pregnant or planning on breastfeeding. Chicory is an emmenagogue herb, which results in your body’s capability in having a period. What this means is that chicory may cause your menstrual period to begin before it otherwise would. Chicory is likewise a herb, which could lead to something similar to an abortion. It’s recommended to prevent making use of chicory if either of these 2 states (maternity/breastfeeding) relate to you personally.

Another potential complication of chicory entails its potential interaction with particular drugs. Chicory might interact with medicines recommended for cardiac circumstances, particularly medicines which are metabolized by means of an enzyme called cytochrome P-450. Therefore, you always need to talk about making any changes like this with your doctor.

Lemongrass:

  • helps treat numerous health conditions, such as nervous disorders, stomach problems, fevers, arthritis, menstrual problems and even cancer.

    This plant was used by the ancient Chinese to help treat the flu, colds, gas, cramps, pain and as a digestive aid.

     

Ginger Root:

  •  well known as a remedy for travel sickness, nausea and indigestion. It is a warming remedy, ideal for boosting the circulation, lowering high blood pressure and keeping the blood thin in higher doses.
  •  anti-viral and makes a warming cold and flu remedy.
  • a powerful anti-inflammatory herb and there has been much recent interest in its use for joint problems.
  •  is a medicinal herb used primarily for the treatment of Dyspepsia (discomfort after eating), this includes the symptoms of bloating, heartburn, flatulence, and nausea. It is also considered helpful as a preventative for motion sickness and as a digestive.
  • Due to it’s antispasmodic characteristic some people have used it to help ease menstrual cramps. In some traditional systems it is credited with the ability to treat arthritis, fevers, headaches, and toothaches.

Hibiscus Flowers:

  • Studies have shown that drinking hibiscus tea can effectively lower high blood pressure and reduce high cholesterol levels in many individuals.

2. Matcha Tea

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Matcha is a type of green tea that comes in powdered form. Matcha tea is prepared by whisking matcha powder with hot water, which forms a frothy liquid. Matcha powder is also sometimes used as an ingredient in foods and non-tea beverages (such as smoothies). Some of the benefits are:

  • High in antioxidants
  • Increases energy levels
  • boosts immune system
  • detoxifies
  • enhances mood
  • helps prevent cancer
  • lowers cholesterol
  • improves skin

3. Peppermint Leaf Tea

tea

Peppermint tea is a delicious and refreshing way to boost your overall health in a number of ways, due to its ability to improve digestion, reduce pain, eliminate inflammation, relax the body and mind, cure bad breath, aids in weight loss and boosts the immune system. Its impact on the digestive system is considerable, and its base element of menthol is perhaps the most valuable part of its organic structure.

4. Gunpowder Green Tea

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Green tea is the healthiest beverage on the planet. It is loaded with antioxidants and nutrients that have powerful effects on the body. This includes improved brain function, fat loss, a lower risk of cancer and many other incredible benefits.

  • It is loaded with polyphenols like flavonoids and catechins, which function as powerful antioxidants (1). These substances can reduce the formation of free radicals in the body, protecting cells and molecules from damage. These free radicals are known to play a role in aging and all sorts of diseases. One of the more powerful compounds in green tea is the antioxidant Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG), which has been studied to treat various diseases and may be one of the main reasons green tea has such powerful medicinal properties. Green tea also has small amounts of minerals that are important for health.
  • green tea contains more than just caffeine. It also has the amino acid L-theanine, which is able to cross the blood-brain barrier (2). L-theanine increases the activity of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, which has anti-anxiety effects. It also increases dopamine and the production of alpha waves in the brain.Studies show that caffeine and L-theanine can have synergistic effects. The combination of the two is particularly potent at improving brain function. Because of the L-theanine and the smaller dose of caffeine, green tea can give you a much milder and different kind of “buzz” than coffee.
  • Green tea increases fat burning and Improves physical performance (3, 4, 5).
  • A meta-analysis of observational studies found that women who drank the most green tea had a 22% lower risk of developing breast cancer, the most common cancer in women (6).
  • One study found that men drinking green tea had a 48% lower risk of developing prostate cancer, which is the most common cancer in men (7).
  • A study of 69,710 Chinese women found that green tea drinkers had a 57% lower risk of colorectal cancer (8).
  • Green Tea May Protect Your Brain in Old Age, Lowering Your Risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s (9).
  • Some studies show that they can kill bacteria and inhibit viruses like the influenza virus, potentially lowering your risk of infections (10).

The other teas I buy are

  • Positively Tea Company Irish Breakfast Tea – I believe this is the BEST black tea I have ever tasted in my life (it is my hubby’s favorite). We have given it to many of our friends and they concluded the same.
  • Raspberry leaf
  • Traditional Medicinals Teas

 

Hope this list helps! Drink to your healt! 😛

 

 

 

 

beet salad

Beet Salad

Sometimes you just don’t have a lot of ingredients on hand, nor you want to get out of the house to get them. Making a simple dish like this beet salad is a clever solution – a solution that your tummy will thank you for! Why?  Because it’s simple and cleansing. It’s steaming with nutrients and vitamins. And, it’s full of living enzymes!

Beets are a unique source of phytonutrients called betalains. Betanin and vulgaxanthin are the two best-studied betalains from beets, and both have been shown to provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. Unlike some other food pigments, betalains undergo very steady loss from food as the length of cooking time is increased. For example, one recent study has shown the red betalain pigments in beets to be far less heat stable than red anthocyanin pigments in red cabbage. The difference between 15 minutes of steaming versus 25 minutes of steaming, or 60 minutes of roasting versus 90 minutes of roasting can be significant in terms of betalain damage. For these reasons, we use living fresh beets!

Sharing the recipe from Rolheiser:

Ingredients

1 small beet

juice of 1/4 lemon

juice of 1 orange

1 – 1 1/2 tbs extra virgin olive oil            

handful chopped dill

salt to taste

 

1. Wash and grate the beet.

2. Add lemon juice, orange juice, and olive oil. Add chopped dill and mix.

3. Add salt to taste. Serve right away or store in an air tight container in the fridge for 1-2 days.